How to Sneak in Quality Time with Your Kids

Here’s how to get extra one-on-one time with your babes.

By: Amanda Mushro

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Photo by: Hero Images

Hero Images

Every parent can relate to the saying “the days are long, but the years are short.” With our busy schedules, those long days can leave us drained and we tell our kids things like “not right now” and “give me a few more minutes.” Rather than feeling guilty, let’s find a way to squeeze in the quality time we're craving.

Sometimes we need to adjust our schedule, and other times we need to adjust the way we think about our day. From everyday tasks to planning something special, here’s a few ways to get quality time in this week.

Schedule Appointments Separately

It’s definitely a time saver to schedule doctors and dentist appointments for your kids at the same time; but, if you separate their appointments, you’ll find yourself with extra time with just one kid. So, take advantage of that time and go out for lunch or breakfast to chat and enjoy just being a party of two.

Running Errands

You have a to-do list that is a mile long, and you can probably get through it faster without a kid in tow. However, running errands is a great time to sneak in quality time with your kids. Ask them to tag along for a day out together and tell them you would love to have their help. Depending on their age, let them hold your to-do list and check off items as you complete each task. Even if you are in a rush, try to focus on the extra quality time you are getting with your child.

Start Bedtime Earlier

If you find yourself falling into bed as soon as your kids are asleep or cutting the bedtime routines early, move the clock up a bit so that you can enjoy that time with your kids. When they are younger, you’ll have more energy for bath time and reading books, and when they are older, you can chat and let your kids read to you. You will find that some of your best conversations happen right before bed.

Have Them Help You Make Lunch or Dinner

Mealtimes can be hectic with kids, but if you have a helper—even if they are just stirring or putting out the plates and cups—you can talk about their day, ask what made them happy and share a little about your life, too. This is an easy way to turn a normal task into a moment for sharing some one-on-one time with your child.

Turn Ordinary Nights into Extraordinary

Rather than everyone sitting on their tablets watching different shows, have an impromptu movie night. Pop some popcorn, grab a few snacks and cuddle up with your kids.

Go for a Walk

Keep it simple and consistent, but a daily walk with your child can help you to connect every day and to show your kids that you value your time together. For younger kids, a walk before bedtime is a great way to get out their energy and get them ready for their nighttime routine. For older kids, this is a great break from their busy schedules and homework. Pretty soon, everyone will love lacing up their sneakers for a walk with mom and/or dad.

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