Earlier this week I was reminded of a video that made the rounds a couple months ago. Parents were asked if they could have dinner with anyone, who would it be. The parent’s answers were not surprising as most picked celebrities or historical figures. Their kids were then interviewed separately and asked the same question. One of the kids asked, “Does it have to be a celebrity?” The answers the kids provided all revolved around eating dinner with family (cue the tears from the parents and anyone else watching).
There have been many iterations of videos like this where kids are interviewed and we assume we know their answer. However, we are always surprised by the honest simplicity or their answers. We are reminded time and time again, it is our time and attention our children crave from us above all else.
This is not to say we shouldn’t plan family adventures to maximize the summer experience, but we should also not diminish the opportunity to do simple things together. A trip to the library, a picnic in the park or converting your living room into a movie theater are just a few things that don’t seem like a big deal to us, but can mean the world to our kids.
The caveat is that no matter what it is we are doing, we do it with our full attention. This means no phones, no multi-tasking. (Did you just feel a little sinking feeling in your stomach? No multi-tasking? No phone? Is that even possible?) Give it a try, even if it is just for a short time. Too often we wait for the big event, the “special” memory, all the while missing all the small special moments in between.
It’s not too late to take last week’s quiz on Sibling Squabbles and sign up for my email series 6 Days to Summer S.A.N.I.T.Y. Click on this link, enter your email and take the quiz online. You’ll get your first email as soon as you sign up and the good news is, if you start implementing these ideas today, you'll be one step closer to keeping the sibling squabbles in your house at a minimum.
I started writing this blog because I wanted to have deeper conversations beyond "How are you?", "Busy", with other parents. Over the years I've shared personal stories, articles, authors and topics to facilitate conversations with parents about the joys and the challenges of parenting.