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Seven years in the making, my first published book, This Phoenix Speaks , is now a reality. The tireless and tiring work invested to ma...

Kid Dates

I was thinking to myself that I haven't really shared any ideas for parenting in awhile and it might help me to remember how to get back into my groove to discuss stuff that really works for my family.  I usually get some of the best ideas (practical and successful) from other people, too. So, instead of taking ideas today, I will be "other people" and contribute. Hopefully someone will find it as useful for their family as I have done.

One thing that makes a difference in my children's lives is special, set aside one-on-one time. We call them Mom Dates, but I choose to call them kid dates here in order to encourage the fathers out there to make those one-on-one opportunities happen as well. Your children will love you even more for it!

For my kindergartener, I use the bit of time after school to go run errands with just him and I will get him a little treat or we will grab inexpensive lunch at the store we grocery shopped at and he loves those dates! I would actually say that all my children have enjoyed "shopping dates". They fit the bill for getting in some of that essential conversation time parents/children are looking for and it is uses your time in a way that is helpful for the busy parent. Pushing a cart and talking about their friends, school. problems, what they would like to get for Christmas, etc.= good times. :)

The third and seventh graders like to get out from time to time to do something extra different or big-ish, so I try to do that sort of thing any time the opportunity arises. It doesn't arise often due to money constraints, but I keep my eyes peeled for free/inexpensive fun outings and it works out.

My autistic daughter loves to get out of the house and go ANYWHERE. So if I have something I need to do and normally wouldn't take anyone, I take her. She lights up and feels all invited, as if to some amazing event. I love it. If we all could be just so contented, life would be simple.

So there ya go. I know not everyone out there reading this is a parent yet, but if you read it and can think of some mom or dad who might be needing a good idea that works-- share this!

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