Its a small word but it has unlimited value. Time is a precious commodity that many working parents simply don't have enough of. As a working journalist and mother I don't spend as much time with our 3 year old daughter, as I would like to, and I live with permanent guilt as a result.
But I've learned that when it comes to spending time with your kids, its quality, not quantity that counts. My moment with Ntando happens at bedtime when I tell her a story. She has my undivided attention, when I tell her her favourite bedtime story, The Three Little Pigs.
Take a listen to our story telling session:
1. One on One time
Giving your child your undivided attention is the best way of bonding. For that hour or so when you are with them, make sure you are in the moment. You could be at the movies, or just taking a walk around the neighborhood. Switch off your phone and make sure there are no other distractions. For that time, you are theirs, and theirs alone.
2. Road Trips
My family and I enjoy driving long distance. It can be a bit of a challenge when you have little ones, but if you show your excitement, they get excited too. We often drive to KwaZulu-Natal and enjoy the views and the scenery. Ntando loves the sight of farm animals because its an excuse to sing her favorite song, "Old McDonald Had a farm"
3. Eat together
This one can be tricky sometimes, but try and eat together as often as possible. And when you do, ensure that you have very few distractions. Dinner table conversations are the perfect time to catch up with your child and to find out about his or her day.
4. Integrate time into your schedule
Children love to help, especially little children. Giving them a chance to help you clean around the house is an ideal way of bonding, and getting the cleaning done. Its true that sometimes in the process of cleaning, they will make a mess, but its always a fun and enjoyable process for you and your child.