This week I had the pleasure of spending an entire day of one-on-one time with one of my children. This does not happen very often – in this case it was due to my son’s school having an in-service day which meant that I had to swap my work days so he could be looked after.
I think it is easy to underestimate the value of one-on-one time with your kids. It’s not easy to get a lot of this time, especially when you have 3 children who all demand and apparently need different things, all, amazingly, at the same time!
So, I have come to be grateful for those opportunities when I can spend some meaningful one-on-one time with my kids individually. It gives me the chance to get to know them better without the noise and distraction of the entire household and allows me to spend important time really listening to them.
For instance, I adore my Fridays with Delilah Bear where we do boring household things together but find lots of fun in the simple things. Her interest in the seemingly mundane and her excitement in discovering something new never ceases to make me smile.
I don’t get regular opportunities to spend individual time with my older two but I do try to grab them when I can. So while I was initially annoyed when I learned Gilbert had an in-service day the day before the end of the school term (insane timing, honestly) I ended up really looking forward to some rare alone time with him.
Gilbert enjoys going out to shopping centres – he always has. He loves the lights and the escalators and the travelators and the stairs and the lifts. When going on a shopping outing with Gilbert, you work on a quid quo pro arrangement. You get to go to your shop of choice as long as he first gets to travel on his mode of people transport of choice.
On these outings it’s also best to plan your itinerary so you both know what’s going to happen and can plan accordingly…
On Thursday, the plan was to go on an escalator, have a haircut, enjoy some morning tea (necessary bribe to get the haircut happening), try out a travelator, shop for various items (including a new book for Gilbert – thankfully Target had his favourite range of books on special!), take a trip on an even longer travelator and then head home.
We had a great day. Aside from our itinerary we also looked at a giant chess set that took his fancy. He now wants to learn how to play (while I’m racking my brains to remember all the pieces and their rules of movement…) We talked about his friends at school, what he wanted to do for the holidays and he helped me choose new sandals for his sisters.
He insisted on ordering our morning tea and did so beautifully. It is something he has been working on for a while and I was so proud to see him confidently making his order and using appropriate language.
He still likes to hold my hand (shopping centres can be quite daunting for him even with their shiny modes of people transport) and I like that too. He will be 8 next year, I’m sure it will become daggy sometime in the near future so I will treasure these moments while I have them.
I hope to take Matilda out for some mummy-daughter time this weekend. The warmer weather has highlighted some major holes in her wardrobe and she is getting to the age when she is developing her own distinctive style. I hope we enjoy an equally fun day shopping together.
So, I am very grateful for those rare moments of one-on-one time with my three little bears. I just have to be a little more proactive so I can have more of them in the future!
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That’s precious time, isn’t it?
A very worthy grateful.
It is precious time – just need to find a way to do more of it!
Sounds like you had a lovely day! Last weekend my mum took my eldest for a sleepover so hubby & I had some lovely solo time with BamBam. It’s so nice to be able to step back and appreciate their unique little personalities without the backdrop of sibling relationships.
It is great to have solo time with your kids, I really don’t do it enough. Next week the older two are taking turns having mini holidays with their grandparents so I’m hoping we can spend some quality time with each of them in turn. At least we’ll be spared their constant fighting for a few days!!!!
What a perfect thing to be grateful for! I have three small people and it is getting harder to get that special one-on-one time with each of them as they head off to school, kinder and creche.
It is hard to find opportunities for one-on-one time with kids, particularly amid the day to day grind. I’m trying to be more creative about it as it is so special to have dedicated time with them individually…it’s a work in progress!
Aside from time each week with my crazy Badoo, it is rare for me to get this kind of time with my older kids. The older two think they are a unit and go everywhere together. I do take Maxi to OT and it’s just the two of us plus his therapist… I daresay that doesn’t count!?! I have told myself for ages that I will make more time, but I’ve yet to follow through. Must do something about that!! x
I think you can count therapy time, esp. if you have to travel to it (you get some one-on-one on the way!) Unfortunately as I am so time poor both kids have had joint OT sessions lately which have not been ideal for anybody…(we will be changing that next term!) I need to make these opportunities happen with my kids, even if it is for only an hour at a time…it is definitely something to strive for.
Sounds like it was just the perfect day. It is very special when you do get the 1-1 time.
Bronwyn, it was a fantastic day. As well as allowing me to spend some quality time with Gilbert it also showed me how far he has come and makes me feel better about his impending transition to mainstream…I certainly needed the lift in confidence!
It never ceases to amaze me how different kids are from the same family. Each one of them brings out a different side of us too!
Carol, that is so true, although it would be far easier if they would at least have one thing in common!!!! But it is great they are all individual people, I’m enjoying getting to know each of them as they grow up.
I’m relishing being able to have one-on-one time with both girls at the moment. I know that will change in the future. It really is so important.
I hope you and Matilda get some quality time this weekend. x
Matilda and I didn’t get to go shopping this weekend (unfortunately) but as her brother is having a few nights away with his grandparents this week we will get our chance for mummy-daughter time soon. Glad you’re enjoying those special times with your girls, they really are very precious!
What a great reminder. It’s so true. The time goes so fast you have to remember to sit and and enjoy it 🙂
Caz, I am so bad at doing this normally – i’m always busy and distracted by one or more of my children. But I had such a lovely day with him and he clearly relished that time with me that I am determined to make more time for them individually – I’ll let you know how I go!
How lovely to have that 1:1 time. I never get enough of it, but it’s so lovely. I did take each twin out of preschool one day this week to have some much-needed down time and time with me and that was lovely. I think one day at least each term with each child would be good once they are all at school… and more as required. You do see them so differently when one to one.
Seana, that is so right. For my school aged kids it seems having days out of school may be the only way to get that one-on-one time with them…having one day a term sounds manageable and might also be a good mental break for them as well!
One on one time is such a wonderful thing 🙂 I’m glad you got some.
It is wonderful to have one-on-one time – just need to try and do it with them more often (which is much easier said than done!)