Have you ever sat and listened to your kids whining and fighting and wondered what you’re doing wrong? Why can’t you just have happy kids? Why are they always at each other’s throats, tattling to you, and not listening? It’s a frustation that most moms share, but the solution could be as simples as some one-on-one time with your children.
If you have more than one child, they’re bound to compete for your attention. It’s a natural thing that children do. The attention they desire can make them grumpy and needy, and let’s face it, pretty impossible. So, having some alone time with just you can be an immense help in calming those upsets down. When you spend one-on-one time with each of your children, you’ll notice almost immediate changes in the way they act. They will be calmer, more interested in listening and less likely to fight all day long.
How exactly do you get that alone time for your happy kids when you have to deal with every day life? While I always recommend Mommy dates when possible, it might just not be possible. When I was a child, my dad traveled quite a bit, so my mother wasn’t able to do a lot of individual activities with us. Her solution? Special nights.
How You Can Have Happy Kids
Special nights are a simple method for getting that alone time with your child and making them feel special. We had one night a week each where we got to stay up one hour later than our siblings. This hour was spent doing whatever we wanted with Mom. We read together, played games, made paper dolls and had fun together. Some nights, we baked cookies or just sat and talked. It was wonderful and it changed things drastically in our home.
A special night makes kids feel special. They feel like they’re valued and that they matter enough for you to spend time on them alone. Remembering those special nights with my mom brings back warm, comforting memories. It was a good time!
So, in short, special nights build a rapport with your child that is hard to replicate in another way. You’ll spend an hour a week completely focused on them. It builds confidence and makes them feel loved.
The end result of this hour of your time? Happy kids who are going to be more willing to behave during the days they aren’t getting a special night. They have something to look forward to.
Rules for Special Nights
Of course, you can do special nights any way you like, but there are some rules to follow if you want it to work out properly.
- The kid rules. Your child gets to decide what to do for special night. While you can make suggestions, in the end, they’re in control of the activity.
- No distractions. Put your phone away and don’t work on another project while you’re having a special night. This is their time and they deserve all your attention.
- No problems. This hour is a problem free zone . . . in that you will not discuss issues (unless your child brings them up) or use the time to punish or scold your child. It’s meant to be a period of time that is like no-man’s land. No upsets allowed.
- No siblings. You’ll find that other siblings will beg to join in when they find out you’re doing something fun. This is not allowed. Remind them that they will have their own night to do what they like and if they like this idea, they can use it.
- Have fun! This is a time to laugh with your child, talk with them and enjoy each other’s presence!
This is a fun, simple way to get some time alone with your kids, on an individual basis. I use it with my own kids when there’s no time for a mommy date, but there’s no reason not to make it a regular part of your life. You’ll want to, when you see your happy kids.