Parenting 101

How to treasure moments with your kids before they are all grown up?

They are growing up too fast!

It is a common complaint that every parent has. They feel like time is slipping away and their kids are growing up way too fast! While there is nothing you can do to turn the clock back, there are ways to still enjoy the time you have with your small kids (before they grow up). So, if you feel like you aren’t able to make every moment count, here are a few tips and reminders for holding on and making memories that last a lifetime.

Disconnect from technology…often

One of the most common reasons that you may feel time slipping away is probably because you are too engaged with technology and are not giving your kids the attention they need and deserve. No matter how much easier technology has made all our lives, it has also played a big role in disconnecting us from reality and diverting our attention from things more important in our lives.

So, do make it a practice to disconnect from technology every day (even if it is for a limited time). Spend undivided time with your kids and shower them with affection and attention. Playing with your children, story time, shared meals and a simple walk in the park are some everyday activities that will end up becoming the most cherished memories for your kids and for you too. It is good to enjoy TV time with your kids weekly (for age-wise recommended number of hours only). But your most memorable moments are usually the ones where you are more actively engaged.

Make a scrapbook

A great way of making the most of each day and holding on to the memories (when your kids are growing up) is by making a scrapbook. Knick-knacks, mementos, hand- and foot-prints, artwork – all are fair inclusions when it comes to making a scrapbook of childhood memories.

Take plenty of pictures too! Remember, they will let you style their looks only for a little while. So do make the most of it and dress your kids up in funny onesies and record those moments.  Also, do write down the witty, silly, insightful, quirky or clever things your little one’s say or do. You may think that you will remember those antics forever, but they tend to slip away with time. Writing things down is also a great way of reflecting on each day as it passes and making time stretch out a little by letting you relive your favorite moments.

Set aside your To-Do list

Most parents have a seemingly endless list of jobs that they should be doing every waking hour of the day. While many of these are a must, you can prioritize and organize your to-do lists to sideline the tasks that can wait for later to spend some quality time with your children. Give yourself permission to do less and cut out the non-essentials. Letting go of some of your commitments in favor of spending time with your kids is both liberating and worthwhile.

Get outside as much as possible

This is a follow-up to the technology point. Getting outside as much as possible is extremely important (hence the re-emphasis). A change of scene can help rejuvenate you and let you enjoy your time together free of all homebound distractions. This way, you can not only talk to your kids more freely but also be able to encourage their spirit of adventure and freedom. Try to find different activities that you can enjoy as a family so that you get into the habit of trying new things together.

Listen to your kids when they speak

It can be difficult sometimes to listen to everything your child says (They do have a tendency to talk forever!). But it is incredible to see their unique personalities develop. Kids appreciate it when they are truly heard. Believe me, they can tell the difference between real and distracted listening! By being present, you can encourage a much deeper bond with your kids. When they know that their words and opinions matter, it also helps build their self-confidence.

In leaving

Kids do seem to grow up in the blink of an eye. But by incorporating these doable steps into your everyday life, you can make those moments last longer and revisit them with fondness.

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