I know us ladies look forward to date night with the boo! We sure do because it’s always a good time and boatloads of fun. From time to time though, I love to take AnnDrew on a date and today was one of those days.  We always spend time together everyday, doing cool and exciting things, but sometimes you need to just go on a good old fashion date. Earlier, AnnDrew and I went to brunch and then hung out in the park. I had a nice glass of sparkling rose 😉 and the star had her water cup (she never leaves home without lol). We sat outside, so we got to people watch and enjoy the breeze. We relaxed in the grass at the park and I let her walk around exploring everything. Of course, she was saying hi and thank you to everyone that looked her way lol.

I definitely recommend taking your kids out on a date and just enjoy their company. It will pay off in the long run.

We had to get the classic date #Shoefie pic

When kids understand that their parents are available and accessible to them, kids will often thrive during the adolescent years. Parents who are present and involved in the lives of their kids place important emotional, physical and spiritual “deposits” that will continue to influence their kids for years to come. One key component for building kids’ lives is right in front of them: investing time, energy and a commitment to |be there| for their kids. A regular, one-on-one date night with each of your kids is a great place to begin intentionally investing in the overall health and growth of your child.

Here are five tips for having a great date night with your kids:

Choose to do something your kids want to do. At times, when parents want to do something together with their kids, they’ll select an activity that they have interest in, but their kids have little or no interest in. If you really want to create a positive date night tradition where your kids want to hang out with you, try doing things that the kids are interested in. While this is a simple idea, it can reap a lot of benefits! And remember, date nights don’t have to be complicated! They can be as simple as taking your child out to get an ice cream cone or throwing a ball around in the yard.

Communicate. Be sure to engage your son or daughter in conversation at some point during your date night. Don’t just talk about what you are interested in. Talk about anything and everything. Ask your kids about their interests, opinions, and feelings. Ask open-ended questions that can’t be answered yes or no.

Listen. Don’t do all of the talking on a date night with your child! Communication is a two way street, so be sure to work at listening. Listening is the language of love. Through listening, you demonstrate that you value your kids. When you take the time to really pay attention, show empathy and listen – you are taking a key step in connecting with your kids. When kids know that their parents will really listen (instead of immediately “correcting”) they will be more willing to talk.

Display affection. Be sure to offer your kids genuine affection through loving words, affirmation, encouragement, small gifts, and appropriate touch.

Never embarrass your kids in front of their peers. It’s possible that a date night activity might take you onto your son or daughter’s “territory” – to a place where they may run into some of their peers. Gentle teasing is one thing, but embarrassing your kids in front of their peers might be close to being an unforgivable in kid culture. Show respect to your kids and they’ll be more willing to hang out with you – and your date nights will be much more enjoyable as well. I never wanted to be embarrassed in front of my friends, so I already know this is a major no no in the kids world lol.

Here are some fun kid date ideas:

Movies in the yard

Go on a bike ride

Play in the park or other outdoor activities

Build a fort and have a picnic inside

Storytime with the child’s favorite books

Play cards

Arts & crafts

Visit a firehouse

Cook together

Brunch/Dinner

Bowling

Go get ice cream or make homemade ice cream

and plenty more….

 

What are some fun activities you like to do with your kids?

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