One of the most important aspects of family bonding is quality time spent together. A great way to do this is to make a tradition of having one-on-one dates with your kids (Which goes back to my post on the 1 Thing That Changes My Child’s Behavior Faster Than Anything Else).
To make the most memorable experience the first thing you need to do is –TURN OFF YOUR PHONE!!! Never get it out. I do recommend taking pictures of things you do together, but I prefer using an actual camera. I don’t want to be distracted by a call, text or social media feed. If you need to use your phone camera, only get it out for pictures then put it away. Commit to get to know each other without any distractions. Create an unbreakable bond between you and your child. Most of all, HAVE FUN! Laugh with each other and create unforgettable memories together.
- Go to a Local Parade/Carnival/Fair – Walk around, sample the food, play some games and enjoy the fun environment together.
- Go on a Hike – Pack water, a snack, and enjoy a climb in the great outdoors.
- Ride Bikes – Find a fun bike route near you and bring a backpack with water and snacks or choose an exciting destination like a candy store, an ice cream shop, or favorite restaurant.
- Go Roller Skating/Ice Skating – My daughter didn’t know how to skate at all and I was totally rusty, but we had so much fun wobbling and falling together and we got pretty darn good by the end.
- Do a Balloon Launch – Buy some balloons and write kind notes to attach to the string. Do a count down and launch them to the heavens. Talk about where you think they will end up.
- Take a Dip in a Swimming Pool – Get soaked. Don’t worry about your hair or make-up, just dive in. Play sea creatures or mermaids or hide from pirates. Play like you are the only ones there.
- Go to a High School Play – Many high schools will host a spring play/musical. They are usually inexpensive and surprisingly well presented.
- Painting at the Park – Take your supplies with a snack and drinks. Find a shaded spot to lay out a picnic blanket and paint the landscape, or anything you’d like.
- Get Ice Cream – Choose flavors for each other, talk about your child’s dreams, passions, and whatever they’d like to talk about. Just listen, and see how much your child opens up.
- Mini Manicures/Pedicures – Go get them done professionally or do each other’s nails.
- Minute to Win it – Find some fun game challenges and grab the supplies you need (many of which you can find at home) and race ‘til your hearts content.
- Children’s Museum – Bring out the inner child in you and join in the fun with your son or daughter.
- Picnic for Two – Pack a lunch or dinner together and choose a local park. My kids favor the parks with ducks. They love feeding them pieces of their sandwich bread.
- Make Wishes and Counting Clouds – Visit a park, take a blanket, and lie on your backs and watch the clouds go by. Find fun shaped clouds and share with each other. Find dandelions and make wishes.
- Visit an Arcade – Let your child get the tokens and choose the game you will play together.
- Make a Sidewalk Chalk Mural – Choose a theme and go crazy. We like themes such as: under the sea, on the farm, at a restaurant, etc.
- Write Poems – Write separate poems and share. Then write a poem together.
- Take pictures at a photo booth – We love taking pictures in photo booths. Planning out our funny faces and then laughing about them after it just too fun. It never gets old.
- Miniature Golf /Laser Tag – You can never go wrong with these. If mini golf is going to quick or is too easy, change it up. Try left handed, backwards, lie on your belly and shot pool table style.
- Play One-On-One Sports – Choose a sport, get some equipment and get your game on.
- Exercise – Pretend to be personal trainers and teach each other fun exercises.
- Make Cookies – Let your child pick out their favorite cookie recipe and make it fun! Teach new skills and make a mess.
- Press Flower Art– Take a walk with a plastic bag and pick flowers along the way. Look for a variety of shapes and colors. Take them home and press them in a phone book or old text book. A few days later, take out your pressed flowers and glue your design on to white paper. Then cut it to size and frame it.
- Teach Playground Games You Played as a Kid – I loved hopscotch, wall ball, and jump rope tricks when I was younger. I was also a 3rd grade Jacks champion. Woot! Woot! Teaching games that are practically extinct is so much fun.
- Learn a New Hand Clapping Game Together – There are so many fun clapping games you can learn together. Teach each other games you learned at school. Here is a fun youtube channel for hand clapping games.
In reality it doesn’t matter what you do together. The time you spend together is meant to strengthen bonds and build a relationship of trust. You will find that making one-on-one time for each of your children will bring you closer together and it will continue to be something that you both look forward to doing.
What do YOU Enjoy Doing With Your Kids?