Being a mom isn’t always easy. Last week held a few of those days. Situations arise that you are left without answers for. As badly as you want to rise to the occasion and offer some wisdom of hallmark worthiness- some times you are left with nothing. Some days it’s easy to feel like we are totally failing at connecting to our kids.
How I wish they could just see themselves through our eyes. The incredible people they are becoming. How their worth is so much greater than what some mean girl says or some stupid boy forgets. How I wish these little humans came with instructions or that it was as easy as we just KNEW it was going to be when we vicariously raised strangers children in the grocery store check out line.
In these lives of constantly over packed schedules, social media blaring 24/7
, and what easily feels like no real ‘time’ left in our days:
How can we really connect with our kids?
Seriously, turn it all off. TV, phones, tablet, ALL OF IT!!! Even if it’s only one night a week. Break out your high school year books. Tell the kids about the good old days. If nothing else they will have material for their next tweet!
2. Family date day/night!
This doesn’t have to be a costly activity. You don’t even have to leave the house. Plan everything together, games, movies, creating your own pizzas, whatever your family enjoys- and then DO IT TOGETHER!!
3. Work for something!
Whether it be something for your family to enjoy together at home: A garden, a new feature in your yard or house, a family business,
OR a volunteer opportunity,
find something that unites you all in a common goal. Accomplishing something you all have your hearts set on is a great way to remind everyone just how strong your family is when you work together.
4. Say the words!!
Say I love you more often. Seriously- say it!!
5. Don’t be afraid to screw up and when you do own it.
Imagine if we never said we were sorry for a mistake we made in our outside lives/jobs/friendships…..
Being a mom is hard work. We have the weight of our worlds resting on our shoulders. Some days we are (high five mom) RIGHT….and some days we are SO INCREDIBLY wrong – If we want to connect with our kids- we have to be willing to own our mistakes. And more than that, we have to be willing to apologize for them. We owe our kids the same respect we expect.
Thats a tough one!! I have a few mistakes I need to own myself!
6. Laugh with them daily!
Laughter is the best medicine for everything!! Create inside jokes, family laughs, and joyful moments.
Think Legally Blonde – Happy kids don’t try to kill their siblings- how can you go wrong there?
7. Ask questions about their days/opinions/ talents and passions but then LISTEN!
Really really listen to them. I’m constantly amazed by how smart these little people of ours are! How well they articulate their opinions and how much they know about the things they are choosing to be passionate about. LISTEN to all of it- and then-
Join them in whatever it is that make their eyes light up!!
8. MUSIC!!! Bring on the rains down in Africa.
Nothing entertains our kids more than some YouTube MC Hammer or better yet hair band ballads! Sing the words (you know you remember every one!) and shake your groove things together! You won’t regret teaching them the words to Ice Ice Baby. These are things they need to know!
9. Teach them a skill you have.
Whether it be showing them how to bake the perfect pumpkin pie or teaching them how to change the oil in the car. Think about how you felt when someone taught you. Gift them with that same feeling of pride!
10. Say the words….AGAIN!!!
Look them in the eyes when you do. Add how proud you are of them! I’m willing to bet, you will hear it back.
We will never regret the moments we spent WITH these people we’ve been trusted to guide into adulthood. It’s easy to lose far too many moments of our real lives to our digital lives. Time is the only thing that won’t wait. The dishes, that work email, the next level of candy crush or the latest episode of Real Housewives- it all will! And if all else fails tell them to open their snap chat and take a few ‘together-ies’ with those crazy filters…. At least you will be sure to cover #6 that way! 😉