As moms, we know how quickly our day can get away from us. Whether you are a stay-at-home mom, a working mom, or a stay-at-home-and-work-part-time mom (like me!), sometimes it’s hard to complete everything you wanted to do in your day. Between getting the kids ready for school/daycare, laundry, washing dishes, changing diapers, breaking up fights, wiping drool, making dinner, picking up toys, (shall I go on?) we sometimes might forget to slow down and enjoy these days that are so darn fleeting. Our children are growing up fast and they need mommy time. Here are some things I try to do with my three year old son, Jamison, every single day:

 

1. Read Books

Read, read, read! Reading to children is so important, especially to babies and toddlers when they are learning to talk. Reading to children builds vocabulary, improves concentration and will help foster a love of learning. At 2.5 years old, Jamison was diagnosed with a slight speech delay. Along with working with a speech therapist and reading to him daily, his language has improved drastically. I try to read at least three books a day to him. Letting your child pick out the books and asking them questions about the book while reading is a great way at keeping them engaged.

Our favorite books:

  • Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown
  • Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bil Martin Jr and John Archambault
  • Corduroy by Don Freeman
  • The Very Hungry Catepillar by Eric Carle
  • B Is for Bulldozer by June Sobel

2. Go Outside

Too many children don’t get enough exercise. Playing outside is great for the mind, body and spirit. Ideally, children should be playing outside for at least one hour a day. That seems like a lot, doesn’t it? Especially when there are so many other things that need to get done. Instead of just sitting on the sidelines watching them, why not join in? You’ll be getting some fresh air and exercise and spending valuable one on one time with them. (more about this in #3.) If one hour a day does not fit into your schedule, try going outside for 20 minutes, heck even 10 minutes!

Try out these fun outdoor activities:

  • play catch
  • ride bikes
  • go for a walk
  • play tag
  • go to a nearby park/playground
  • play hide and seek
  • do some yard work and have your little ones help (rake leaves, pick up sticks)

    Playing in the leaves while mommy rakes!

3. Play One On One

Spending one on one time with your child shows that you care. Get down on their level. Play on the floor with them. Look into their eyes and ask questions. Smile and laugh together. Your child will learn to communicate better and build self confidence, not to mention build a closer bond between you and your child. What does your child like to do? My son loves to play with toy cars. We enjoy racing and making up conversations between them. I can tell how much he enjoys having mommy there playing right with him.

Here are some one on one time ideas:

  • make a craft
  • play with their favorite toys together
  • bake cookies
  • build a block tower
  • put a puzzle together
  • dance to music
  • color