One of my biggest concerns when we adopted our 5 daughters was how to find one to one time with each child. Spending one to one time with our sons was a very important thing to me and I didn’t want them to lose that or my daughters not to have that. But finding one to one time with each child as a mom of 8 was much more challenging and requires a lot more creativity.
Easy One to One time opportunities you might be forgetting.
- Shopping – Grocery shopping is something that I usually do at least once a week. It used to be crazy taking all of my kids with me. Then I got smarter and started to shop when my husband was home and later when the big kids were in school.I take just one or two kids with me so that they can really have my full attention. We talk and sing in the car and they help me get what I need at the store. I always let them pick a low cost treat at the store or sometimes we stop for ice cream or something before we go to the store.It’s fun for both of us and it’s an easy one on one time opportunity. Even my teenagers come with me to grocery shop and it turns something I have to do into something we all look forward to!
- Running Errands – How do you make getting your oil changed fun? Take a cute daughter or son with you! We get our oil changed at a mechanic shop that is right by a strip mall with very good and very inexpensive bagel sandwiches and Chinese food, and a coffee shop.I used to hate getting my oil changed but now it’s an excuse to have lunch with one or two of my kids. While we wait for my car to be ready, we eat and talk and window shop. Time passes much faster when I’m having fun with my kids!
- Cooking Dinner- There is a strength in working on something together and making dinner is a really good example. With a big family like mine, there is always a lot of potatoes to be peeled, cheese to be grated and vegetables to chop.This takes time and it’s a great time to really talk. While we are cooperating and working as a team, walls seem to go down and it’s easier to give compliments and hear about what is happening in their day.
- Doing Chores – Doing chores is a lot like making dinner. Sitting together pulling weeds is a good time to talk and be silly. Folding laundry is a fairly mindless job so it is easy to talk to each other. We like to play who’s shirt is this which get’s pretty challenging at time with a family of 10.Even helping them clean their room is a time to be together after my initial irritation that their room looks like a bomb went off. I sit on the bed and break the job into small tasks that they can do and challenge them to get it done in small amounts of time. As we do it, we always end up laughing and talking.
- Doing service – Going together to visit a friend or family member who is sick or sad, helping a friend or neighbor, etc is a great way to spend one to one time with your kids. Talking on the way about what you are going to do and how it will help someone is always sweet and on the ride home there is always so much to talk about and we have a good feeling.
- Read them a story – Even though my kids are older now there are special memories and sweet feelings about the stories I read them when they were little. Every once in a while, I go down to the book case and get one of those stories and we cuddle while I read them.
Spending one to one time with your kids doesn’t have to be a big thing. The simple times that I have spent with my kids are the times that we have really connected the most and the times that mean the most to them. If you are trying to find one on one time with your kids I recommend thinking about the things you do every day and which of those you could do with your kids.