Individual time with each of my boys is so important to me as a mama. This is why I do it, how we make it work, and what we do during those precious twenty minutes together.
We’ve been back in school for two weeks now, and I have to admit that I think it’s the best. We’re back in a good routine (I shared our school year daily routine here), and I feel so happy.
But finding and spending quality time together is much harder when they’re gone all day at school.
So today we’ve teamed up with Gymboree to share their super cute fall clothes, and talk about how I spend one-on-one time with my kids, what it looks like for each of them, and why I make time for it.
First, let’s talk about these really cute boy clothes for a second.
I’ve been shopping at Gymboree for my boys since B was a tiny baby. Their quality is exceptional, and their prices are so good, and I’m super excited to see the modern fit on their clothing this season!
Also I picked up a few new things for Sanny for fall. He wore these little skinny CORDUROY pants for him, and I couldn’t resist this little FLAG TEE with “courage,” “strength,” and “kindness” printed on it. I love a kids clothing company that puts great messages on their kids tees, can I get an AMEN?!
And finally, this little BLAZER CARDIGAN for Sanny is basically the best thing that ever happened to me. When the weather cools down, it’ll be perfect for church, or when we go out to a nice dinner.
So many cute, modern pieces that have amazing fit!
Ok, now let’s talk about one-on-one time.
How do we find time for one on one time?
Schedule it. It’s the only way. We’re not perfect every single day, but I try really hard to have this quality time with Fos in the morning after B goes to school (Fos is in half day kindergarten, so he doesn’t start until 10am).
For B, we do it after school when Sanny is asleep and Fos is in quiet time.
I don’t currently do one-on-one time with Sanny. Once he stops napping we’ll probably add it in. But I have plenty of little snippets of time with him throughout the day!
What do we do for one on one time?
The key for me is to find something I, as the parent, enjoy doing. I really dislike playing LEGOs, and I’m not super interested in their make believe.
If our one on one time is something that isn’t enjoyable for me, I’m going to struggle to make time for it. I want to savor this time, look forward to it, and work my day around it.
Reading is something I’ve always loved to do, and seeing a book come alive for my kids is more magical for me than anything else. So almost always for our one on one time, we read!
B and I are reading a novel together and loving it.
Fos and I practice reading together, and read early reader books. But sometimes Fos and I play games together for our one-on-one time. I shared our favorite games HERE!
How long does one on one time last?
Usually around 20 minutes. For most novels, a chapter only takes 10-20 minutes to read, so it’s a low time commitment with a big impact.
When I read with Fos, we read an early reader book together – he reads one page and I read the other throughout the whole book. I’ll be sharing a list of our favorites soon! These books take us about 15-20 minutes to read together, since he’s just learning to read and still going slowly on his pages.
What do the other kids do during one-on-one time?
In the morning, B is at school when I do my one-on-one time with Fos. Sanny is really great at independent play, so I just pull out some DUPLOs for him and he stays upstairs in the playroom while Fos and I read for 15-20 minutes.
During B’s one-on-one time, Sanny is napping, and Fos does quiet time in his room. He plays LEGOs, listens to an audiobook, or colors.
I make a big effort to make sure this one-on-one time feels special and very individual.
Why do I do one-on-one time?
I do it because I want my kids to know they matter. I want to connect with them. I want them to know that despite a busy schedule and demands of work, time with them to do something fun together is important to me.
Gymboree’s fall campaign is called #MakeThemSmile, and I’m telling you that setting aside this little chunk of time with each of them every day makes them smile, and makes me so very happy as a mom.
Leave a comment if you have any other questions about our one on one time – happy to answer!!