Life can be hectic and busy. Parenting can sometimes seem to compound that problem.
And then there are the holidays. It’s very easy to get caught up in your to-do list. Or at least, it is for me. We are always having to run here or there, finish this, clean that. Sometimes I find myself saying “no” when I should be saying “yes!”
Today, I wanted to share a few ideas on making time to slow down and have fun.
I try to allow time to have fun, but sometimes we really don’t have the time to jump over every crack.
When we’ve had an especially hurried few days I like to plan one day to be a preschooler’s paradise. We still do what needs to be done, but I take extra care in the planning and make it my mission to say yes. I try to view the entire day through the eyes of my preschooler.
Five things we do while running errands:
- We jump over the cracks! Both of us, it’s more fun that way.
- He pushes all the buttons! Elevators, debit card machines, coke machines.
- We stop at the grocery store with the carousel even if we don’t have shopping to do. It’s sacrificing five minutes time for some smiles and giggles. Well worth it.
- We take the time to stop and watch that trail of ants, find the perfect rock, or read every sign we see. This is something we try to do everyday, but it can often get pushed to the side when we are in a hurry.
- We have coin races in the Children’s Miracle Network donation bins. I bring a bag of change for this purpose. We watch the coins spin round and round. We declare victors.
Five ideas for the time spent at home:
- Let them help make dinner. Let them pick dinner! Yes, it might be more work for you, but they’ll be thrilled to help. And you might get the added bonus of them eating better than usual.
- Play that board game before you make the phone call. Most games don’t take that long to play and making your child a priority will make them feel extra special.
- Read them one more book. Or three!
- Is it going to make a mess? Help them make a mess! Let them help you clean it up. That can be almost as much fun as making the mess. No, really.
- Plan an extra special bath. Instead of getting them out, add more warm water once the original water turns cold. My son looks forward to bath time, but by that time, I’m often looking forward to bed time. This is always a favorite!
All of these things combined makes for a very happy child. I usually get a lot of sweet comments at the end of one of these days.
The truth is, I’m happier too. But you don’t have to do all of these things in one day like we do.
Have you been feeling rushed? Set out to try a few things from this list, or come up with a few of your own. You’ll all be glad you did.
Need a few more fun ways to slow down?
- Try these 10 tips for being hands on with your kids.
- Learn to let go… let the child lead the way.
- Try these 4 simple ways to squeeze more quality time into your day.
- Try some 10 minute challenges to refocus the day and your kids.