Daddy Dates

Spending special time with your children is important. For us, that means planning dates for five children. (Though technically, it’s still four, since one of our boys is less than one year old.)

My wife helps me keep track of who needs a date and when. Together, we do our best to plan dates for each child on a regular basis. In general, I hope to have some one-on-one time with each child at least once a month. And though my wife, Sarah, is always home with the children, we try to arrange times for her to get away for one-on-one time with each child, too.

Daddy dates and Mommy dates are important, especially when you have multiple children. They provide each child with a personal connection to you as their parent, making them feel important, special and loved. And they get a chance to talk with you about anything that’s on their mind, with none of their siblings listening in.

While some dates should be special and planned (and perhaps budgeted), others can be spontaneous, simple and cheap (or free!). Furthermore, some dates can be combined with errands and other events. For instance, when I get the groceries on alternate weeks, I usually take one of my sons along with me. During our shopping, we usually do a little ‘munching’ somewhere together. Good times.

Sarah recently emailed me this list of 35 Unique Parent & Child Date ideas. Do you have any to add? If so, leave a quick comment. I’d love to hear from you!

Here’s a short list of my own:

  1. A Mets home game (with free Kids Club tickets)
  2. Batting practice at a local park
  3. Groceries (with some ‘munching’ somewhere between stores; the Costco food court has excellent prices)
  4. A subway ride to somewhere in the city
  5. Ice-cream!
  6. A coffee shop
  7. The library
  8. A walk
2 replies
  1. Matt Barfield
    Matt Barfield says:

    We love to do museums geared toward the child’s interests. For my oldest, that means Aviation museums. Our fifth loves science. Our second, history. Our third child is wild about animals, so a zoo visit is great. We live near Washington D.C., so we have access to Smithsonian museum which don’t charge admission. I try to connect with the kids in places they are interested in, rather than places I am interested in. I really don’t care about airplanes much, but I love being with my son in a place where he is surrounded by what he loves.

  2. TOvermiller
    TOvermiller says:

    Matt – thank you for sharing these valuable thoughts! I especially like when you say,

    I try to connect with the kids in places they are interested in, rather than places I am interested in.

    So true, and I need to grow at doing this better. If you’re ever in the area and want to visit The Intrepid, right here in Manhattan, let me know. It’s my oldest son’s favorite date spot. It’s fantastic. You’re a blessing.

    By the way, keep up the good work over at http://www.autismmissionary.com/ and http://www.ipmworld.org/.

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