Prioritising quality time with our kids

Feb 11, 2021

Any day spent with you is my favourite day.
So, today is my new favourite day!
Pooh


Children need to feel loved and cared for, and as a parent, I have realised just how important it is to be more than being merely present in their lives but to be actively looking for connections with them.  

It’s not enough to be there just for important occasions or when they have a predicament, but children need love and attention on a regular basis to become mentally, spiritually, and fervently strong individuals. 

It’s vital to not only tell our children that we love them, but to show them that we do. 

The way we do this as a family is through uninterrupted periods of quality time, both one on one and all together.

There are many ways we do this and ways we have learnt to speak into our children’s lives. But there are 3 that we consider the most impactful for us.

 

Do you speak their language?



Gary Chapman and Ross Campbell have written an amazing series of books called the 5 Love languages and there is even one for children.

They highlight 5 areas that we express love, and experience it, namely physical touch, gifts, words of affirmation, acts of service, and quality time.   

These are an incredible resource into helping parents gauge how to really connect with their children. Quality time is important but what you do with that time is where the impact lies.

Having 3 children all with different love languages it can be a challenge to know where each one is emotionally and mentally at and how to tailor that time to have the most impact connecting with them so individually.

When verbal reassurances may mean so much to one don't mean nearly as much to the other who needs the hugs, cuddles, and physical displays of affection, and neither of those are effective with the baby of the house who thrives when we just simply be with her.  

It's all in finding the quality in the quality time.

 

Quality moments in your everyday routine



Each morning, before our children hop out the car at school, I take the time to look each of them dead in the eye… and inevitably you will hear one of them sigh because they know what is coming.

Every morning I pray over our children and their day ahead of them and remind them of who they are in Christ and the hopes that Sean and I have for them.  It normally it sounds like this…

"You are a boy/girl of integrity and character, a temple of the Holy Spirit, and you will love the Lord your God with all your heart. Today you will be a blessing to your teachers and friends. You are a boy/girl of valour, you are the head and not the tail, you are above it all and not beneath, you strive to be a leader and not a follower! The Lord's praises shall continually be in your mouth and you will stand up to the schemes of the devil because you have on the whole armour of God! Ok, love you, have a great day!!"

Quality time needn’t only be chunks of set aside time, but words of quality spoken over your children in the moment. Perhaps those 2 minutes of reminding them of their scripture-based value are the moments that are going to be most treasured to them that day and wouldn’t you be grateful that you took that time!

 

Family nights



Gathering your family around a table with a packet of crisps or a huge bowl of popcorn and a game is timeless.

Sean works long hours, he’s up early and can get home rather late and so he sees the children less than he would like.  Family game nights is where he finds his connection with all of us, where he can shut off from the hustle and bustle and focus on the you, me, and us structure of our family.  

A night a week with board game, even just a few games of “go fish” or Uno, also gives us the chance of engaging in a bit of “healthy family competition”, and as long as it isn’t Monopoly, it ends with us still liking each other!

Quality time doesn’t have to be expensive, extravagant, or draining, in fact perhaps it shouldn’t be any of those things.

Simply spending time at a local park, go for a walk or bike ride together, watching a movie uninterrupted, building a puzzle, doing arts and crafts, or simply sitting with a cuppa chatting about everything or nothing… it’s about making quality time a time of quality!


Kettrick Shefferman
Being His Presence In Every Place