Girls night in

Due to an unexpected family schedule conflict, I recently had the pleasure to spend an evening one on one with my daughter. I don’t know about you, but with my families busy schedule of activities, it’s too uncommon to have individual time with each of my children.

With the guys out of the house for a while, Little Bear and I had a blast being girlie. Although she can put on a great tomboy attitude to keep up with the older brothers, she does it in full pink style. She was excited to spend some mom time gussying up her nails. We did pedicures first and she chose pink. I usually stop there, but Little Bear was just too excited. She liked mom’s brown so much, that she opted to have a manicure and insisted that mom just had to have one to match. I did have to draw the line when she wanted to paint Rosie’s nails. I think we had a different vision of what it would look like to hold down the dog to do her nails….especially given Rosie’s growth and grace have earned her the nickname Moosie-Lucy….

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I had no idea that an evening of nail beautification was supposed to be followed by a game of Yahtzee Jr, but clearly Little Bear did. Although I won by one point, she was confident the game was rigged!Picture 058

We ended our evening by carefully scanning Netflix for a princess show. We snuggled on the couch watching an episode of Dora, without a single boy complaint that it was a girl show.

Although my polished finger nails never last longer then the next dish washing or house cleaning task, I would do it all again. The time talking and giggling with my daughter is irreplaceable. Currently we may discuss her love for our dog, her dolls missing shoe, or hurt feelings from a brother, but in the blink of an eye she will be a teenager and the topics will change. No matter her age, no matter her topic of discussion, she is important and I want to hear what she has to say. I want her to know that I am available to her.

Daddy and mommy dates with our kids do not occur often enough. We need to be more deliberate in setting time to spend with each of them individually. However difficult it is to set aside that time, I believe it is crucial in building strong relationships with each of our children and showing them that they are deeply loved and valued.

I recently read a post by Goodsirs where he provided a list of daughter date ideas and commented, “Long before your daughter begins to date, dad’s should set the bar very high and show her how a lady should be treated. With courtesy, gentleness, whimsy, and your undivided attention (put away the phone). This is one of the reasons why father-daughter dates are critically important.”

Although we find it easier to plan “family time” activities, we are striving to be more intentional with individual time with each of our children. My evening with Little Bear was a great reminder of how precious that individual time is.

How do you set one on one time with your children?

2 Comments

  1. One-on-one time is more difficult to create than it is to find, in my experience. What I mean is that I take the opportunity every time one presents itself, rather than try so hard to create the opportunity. At least, I try! Sometimes even that is difficult.

    For example, last week my youngest caught me going out the door for exercise and asked to join me, so I said yes. We had a great time together, her biking and chatting my ear off while I alternately walked and jogged alongside her. She loved it. Had I planned it, others would have asked to tag along. As it was, we spent an hour enjoying each other.

    Sometimes, I do plan one-on-one times together. Usually, these planned times tend to be with my oldest two daughters, ages 14 and 16. I don’t know why it works out this way in my family, it just does!

  2. I agree that one-to-one time is very important. Unfortunately I’ve not been very consistent in this area. I try to set aside a date once a month out of the house so that my daughter has my full attention (without her little brother interrupting every 5mins). For the younger sibling, I’m attending classes with him so I take the chance to bond.

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