8 simple ways to bond with each of your children individually

Hearing “Thank you, Mommy, for only taking me today. I love being alone with you” is like music to our ears. ?

8 simple ways to bond with each of your children individually

Every parent knows that when you have a big family, it’s really hard to find alone time with each of them. In my case, I have four children and I am still nursing my baby, so having time to escape one on one with the others can be quite challenging.

There is only one of me and four of them, and I certainly don’t want their childhood to slip out of my grasp without my consent.

Like most parents, I spend every waking hour making our house into a home, filling their memory bank with unforgettable experiences and campaigning every day for them to be kind, courteous and caring.

However, I recently started to worry if my attempts at raising awesome tiny humans were enough?

Am I spending enough time with each child individually? Am I meeting all of their needs? For quite some time now, we have been doing everything as a family unit. I can’t even remember a time when I actually did something fun with just one child alone. We are always doing things as a family, even story time is a family affair.

Why it’s important to bond with each child individually.

Reconnecting with each child—and getting a little alone time with no agenda has been one of my 2017 goals. Connecting with each of them will help lay the foundation for a trusting parent/child relationship. As I go through the motions with each child, I notice their hugs became tighter and the bond between us helps to give them the confidence they so deserve.

Here are 8 simple ways to bond with each child individually

1. Try a sport together.

For my 10-year-old Jackson, he knew I used to be an avid skier before I had kids. We recently took a trip to the mountains and I decided to put the little ones in lessons so I could spend time on the slopes with my first-born.

His first few tries weren’t that great, but I was able to encourage him to not give up and to keep going. After three runs, he got it. After, he said, “Thank you, Mommy, so much for only taking me today. I love being alone with you.” You pick the sport that would be easy to do with your child, but I can assure you, this one is a win.

2. See a performance or sporting event.

You can go to a concert, watch a sporting event, or go see a musical or a play. I took my daughter to see her friend play in a band and the experience was perfect. We went to the front row and she loved her time alone with me. During the performance, she grabbed my hand and I knew I was exactly where I needed to be—alone with her.

3. Go out to eat.

This one is very easy to arrange, so I tried it with my four-year-old Roman. I picked him up from school and took him out to lunch. I let him choose whatever he wanted off the menu and had him help me select my meal. He too mentioned he loved being alone with mommy.

4. Go for a walk.

Not only do I have four kids, I also have two dogs that need to be walked daily. I took my daughter to the beach with our silver lab Mabel, and we worked on training her. My daughter loved not having her brothers around, and happily shared her day with me.

5. Create a story together.

Besides reading a book, I find it really fun to create a story with your child. I start with, “Once upon a time, there was this little boy Roman who lived on a mountain. He… ” Then I have Roman create a fun tale of what happens next. We go back and forth for a good 20 minutes and all of my kids absolutely love this creative time. By doing this I find it a more restful, intimate zone that only we get to exist in.

6. Make a craft.

Lucky for me I live next door to a craft store and having the best diaper bag helps transport stuff for the baby and the supplies needed for craft time. Pinterest is a mom’s best friend and at any given time you can pull up hundreds of DIY Crafts.

7. Chaperone a school trip.

My volunteer days are practically non-existent with having a baby. However, my daughter really wanted me to accompany her on a school trip. I finally did it. I arranged for child care and went on my daughter’s trip. She was so proud to have me there, she introduced me to her entire class.

8. Play with your child.

Every child loves to play. Tapping into their innocent imaginations can be quite fascinating. My boys are Lego warriors that wear supercharged capes. They can climb any building and rescue all the good guys, while my daughter twirls in her tutu and seems to always have ten plus teddy bears to take care of. Learning how they play—and being part of their play time—is rewarding for both the child and the parent.

All children really want is our time.

We get one shot at this unpaved road called parenting. There is no manual and certainly no right way to be a stellar parent. All we can do is try. Schedule alone time with each child and you too will find out their passions and desires. It’s a privilege being the one person they get to call mom. I will gladly hold their hand one at a time through their magical unchartered journey.

This article was originally published on City Girl Gone Mom.

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14 sweet 'just thinking of you' gifts for every mama

A sweet surprise that tells her you've been thinking of her might be the pick-me-up she needs.

Who says you have to wait for birthdays or holidays to give your bestie a great gift? A sweet surprise that tells her you've been thinking of her might be the pick-me-up she needs in these more-than-trying times. We've rounded up some of our favorite go-to gifts that are certain to be a bright spot in her week. But be warned, you may want to snag a few for yourself. (You deserve it, mama.)

Here are some our favorite "just because" gifts to give our hardworking mama friends.

New Mother face + body care duo

volition face + body care duo

This correcting oil and stretch mark minimizer is perfect for the pregnant mama looking to keep her pregnancy glow. The correcting oil brightens the skin while reducing dark spots, and the stretch mark minimizer works to smooth her ever-growing belly.


Allover roller

esker allover roller

This jade roller goes beyond your typical face roller and can be used anywhere on the body. It works to increase stimulation and reduce puffiness and is perfect for applying any oils to the face or body. Plus, it feels like a mini spa treatment.


Kombucha making kit

farmsteady kombucha making kit

What could be a more perfect gift for the health-obsessed friend? This kombucha making kit comes with everything you need to brew your own homemade green tea kombucha. They'll think this is the tastiest gift ever.


Laetitia lipstick

cupid & psyche laetitia

This red lipstick is perfect for your makeup enthusiast bestie who is looking to spruce up her life in quarantine. Crafted in the United States, these bee and vegan-friendly and cruelty-free lipsticks are created to flatter all complexions. Cupid and Psyche Beauty makes finding the perfect red lip way too easy!


Jigsaw puzzle

inner piecec jigsaw puzzle

Mamas need to destress now more than ever during quarantine. This adorable jigsaw puzzle is perfect for the mama who needs a brain break! The 500-piece puzzle designed by artist Ray Oranges features an abstract gradient design that fits a standard frame when completed. Bonus: It's printed on recycled paper and the company donates $1 from every puzzle sold to youth mindfulness programs.


Matilda's Bloombox

matilda's bloombox

If we have to be stuck inside, we might as well have some gorgeous florals to brighten up the space. Matilda's Bloombox locally sources blooms, delivers them to her door and provides simple tips on how to arrange it into a beautiful bouquet.


'I Am Enough' bracelet

I Am Enough bracelet

Let this dainty bracelet serve as a constant reminder to your bestie that she is enough. She'll wear this on her wrist and read this daily oath to herself, "I Am Enough."


Glow assorted teas

vahdam low assorted teas

This tea gift box set covers the entire spectrum of flavors from sweet to spicy. Individually packaged in beautiful tins, your gal pal will feel like a queen sipping her morning tea. Originally $40, this set is currently on sale for just $24. We'll take two, please.


Find your voice journal

find your voice journal

Journaling is a great way to ease anxiety and will slow your bestie's racing mind before bed. This gift is perfect for first time journalists and includes prompts, daily quotes and coloring pages to help her unlock her potential and find her voice.


Premium frother

shore magic premium frother

This gift is fitting for your latte-sipping bestie who can't go a day without her coffee. All she has to do is add two scoops of collagen to her favorite drink, and she'll have a perfectly foamy drink ready in seconds. Skipping the drive-thru line has never been so easy!


Bath soak infusion kit

maude bath soak infusion kit

Say hello to hydration! She'll be feeling smooth and relaxed as ever after a long bath soaking in these salts. This vegan + cruelty-free set incorporates dead sea salt and dehydrated coconut milk powder for an ultra hydrating experience.


Tiny Tags 'mama' necklace

Tiny Tags 'mama' necklace

It's a hard-earned title she answers to a hundred times per day. Whether she's new to the club or a seasoned professional, this delicate script 'mama' necklace is guaranteed to be a perfect fit.


Superfood honey

Beekeeper's Naturals B.Powered honey

With a lack of sleep and jam-packed days, getting through the afternoon can be a real challenge. Send her a powerful pick-me-up in the form of a therapeutic blend of royal jelly, bee pollen, propolis and raw honey. It makes the ideal companion for tea, smoothies, yogurt or even on its on.


Calming midnight mask with melatonin

Who doesn't deserve a reminder to pamper themself every once in awhile? Even better, this mask does all its work at night while you're sleeping with no extra effort needed. It's an amazing plant-powered antioxidant-packed mask that has melatonin, wild dandelion leaf and hyaluronic acid to rehydrate, repair and reset facial skin. It's so good, you might want to gift it to yourself. We won't tell, mama.


We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.


Sorry, you can’t meet our baby yet

Thank you for understanding. ❤️

In just over three weeks, we will become parents. From then on, our hearts will live outside of our bodies. We will finally understand what everyone tells you about bringing a child into the world.

Lately, the range of emotions and hormones has left me feeling nothing short of my new favorite mom word, "hormotional." I'm sure that's normal though, and something most people start to feel as everything suddenly becomes real.

Our bags are mostly packed, diaper bag ready, and birth plan in place. Now it's essentially a waiting game. We're finishing up our online childbirth classes which I must say are quite informational and sometimes entertaining. But in between the waiting and the classes, we've had to think about how we're going to handle life after baby's birth.

I don't mean thinking and planning about the lack of sleep, feeding schedule, or just the overall changes a new baby is going to bring. I'm talking about how we're going to handle excited family members and friends who've waited just as long as we have to meet our child. That sentence sounds so bizarre, right? How we're going to handle family and friends? That sentence shouldn't even have to exist.

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This viral post about the 4th trimester is exactly what new mamas need right now

"We are alone. Together. You are surrounded all the other mothers who are navigating this tender time in isolation. You are held by all of us who have walked the path before you and who know how much you must be hurting. You are wrapped in the warm embrace of mama earth, as she too settles into this time of slowness and healing."

Artist and teacher Catie Atkinson at Spirit y Sol recently shared a beautiful drawing of a new mom crying on a couch—leaking breasts, newborn baby, pile of laundry and what we can only assume is cold coffee, included. Everything about the image is so real and raw to me—from the soft stomach to the nursing bra and the juxtaposition of the happy wallpaper to the palpable vulnerability of the mother—I can almost feel the couch underneath me. I can feel the exhaustion deep in this woman's bones.

My heart feels the ache of loneliness right alongside hers. Because I remember. I remember the confusion and uncertainty and love and messy beauty of the fourth trimester so well. After all, it's etched in our minds and bodies forever.

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