I celebrated my son Jayden’s 8th birthday (on June 9th) this past weekend and we had the funnest time in honor of the day I birthed him (exactly a week after my bday). During his bday weekend he had an amazing occasion spent with family and his closest buddies from school. On his actual birthday we enjoyed a day of sweet fun with the family at Candytopia in Santa Monica, an art installation and sanctuary of vibrant colors, confetti, candy art, grab-able treats in every installation room entered and a marshmallow tsunami. The next day was all about the pool and pizza with his best buds and all of the summer time vibes included (the weather in LA was so gracious). By Sunday evening we were pooped out (well, more so me, lol) and put year number eight celebration in the books of lasting memories.
For my son’s birthdays I like to be a little more creative about what we do to celebrate his life because I always make time to create fun memories with him no matter what time of year it is. I make it a priority to spend as much quality time with him by cherishing every second (especially now that I share custody with his father which limits the time we spend together). I believe how you spend your time with your child is important and will determine the outcome of their adulthood and the choices they make once they leave the nest. With time being on no one’s side, you want to savor the moments you have with them as a child because they won’t last forever. And it means a lot to them that you make the most of your time together count.
So on this post I’m sharing at least “eight” (in honor of my son’s 8th birthday) parenting tips on ways to spend quality time with your child.
1 Shared Reading
Research shows that it is highly beneficial to read together even if your child already knows how to read. Besides the valuable time spent together and the close bond your building, it gives your child a positive attitude towards reading and enriched cognitive development. I started off reading to my son and once he learned how to pronounce the words I had him read to me.
2 Game and Puzzle Time
It’s the perfect way to teach them social skills like how to co-operate with others, team work, problem solving and of course, relationship building. It’s fun learning and they don’t even know that they are.
My son loves playing board games and doing puzzles together. His favorite games are dominoes, connect four and monopoly. The puzzles he enjoys are usually the marvel super hero ones.
3 Go places together, like a museum (or Candytopia!)
It offers a great way to spend time together learning and seeing something new. Museums are one of those places you get to extend their imagination. They become immersed into creativity, critical thinking and explore their curiosities further. It creates a chance to connect and have a shared understanding of the environment. It can also turn into an at home art session after the inspiring experience. Art museums are our favorite!
4 Watch a family movie together
Watching a movie together provides an excellent moment to communicate even if it’s very little (lucky for me my kid likes to communicate a lot lol) about what they see or feel about the program. It creates a strong sense of cohesion between you and your child(ren) promoting emotional bonding. It’s an overall great way for a healthy discussion. So Netflix it up with your babies!
I usually let my son choose the movie, but often times we’ll choose one together.
5 Leisure and extracurricular activities
Not only is it important to put your kids in extracurricular activities to build self-esteem, confidence and teamwork, but it is also important for you to be involved to strengthen your parent-child relationship. It shows that you have interest in them and what they do which builds a strong and healthy connection.
I love watching my son play soccer and basketball. I’m always on the sidelines cheering him on and rarely miss a game. He has recently found interest in a particular musical instrument so I’ll be getting him lessons soon and will be encouraging him on his new found love.
6 Vacation together
Exploring the world together opens them up to a wanderlust world of adventure and cultures. According to researchers, it’s beneficial to their brain development opening them up to a fresh new perspective. Overall it creates great bonding moments and memories.
We are due for another family trip (just us two) after enjoying a vacation in Palm Springs last summer to celebrate our birthdays.
7 Homework and/or workbook
The commitment and focus is effective. It provides a meaningful setting for sharing and learning together. You establish a proactive learning environment. A nice blend between school and home.
This is a perfect way for my son and I to spend some one on one time together during the school week. It’s a big deal for me to show him that his education matters by working on it together or reviewing it as a team after its complete.
8 Meditate together
I’m learning just how important meditating is to our daily lives and implementing this into the life of your child will do wonders for them now and later. It is a healthy habit that promotes inner peace, confidence and concentration. I am gradually introducing it to my son by starting with meditation music before going to bed.
What are some ways you spend quality time with your child(ren)? If you have nieces and nephews (and no children), do you do any of these things with them? I would love to hear your thoughts on today’s post in the comments. Hope you enjoyed our pictures from Candytopia.
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