“I was thinking we should do date nights with the kids each week,” I said to my husband as my effort to get enough one-on-one time with each of our five children. “If we rotated the kids each week then you and I alternated every other week, but we would have to switch it up at some point so that we would also alternate who takes who so each of the kids gets time with each of us…” If my intricate and detailed kid date night was confusing for you, you are not alone… it was for my husband too. In fact, if I remember correctly, it lasted approximately two weeks and then fizzled out because it was just too complicated.
In a world where we are overworked and stretched too thin, sometimes if feels like we cannot get enough time in with our kiddos. And when we do, that time might feel rushed or squeezed in. However, over the years I’ve learned that quality times does not need to be over the top or complicated. Sometimes it is the simple moments that mean the most for our children and teens.
In the teen years, our time shifts from providing them physical care and quality time that is filled with play to a time of building a relationship that will eventually move into a mentorship and more of a friendship-quality as they enter into adulthood. This is the time we build relationship, which is done in the simple moments:
- Staying up a little late to catch up on your night-owl-teen’s friendship state of the union
- Going for a walk around the block a couple times a week
- Asking your teen to hang out with you in the kitchen or even help while you make dinner
All of these moments can be used to build the relationship. Ask your teen about their day. About their friendships. About their future hopes. Or simply about their most cumbersome teacher.
These moments are for connection, so be careful that they don’t turn into correction. Connection in these little moments, in a world where it feels like there is no time, makes all the difference.Share