I recently wrote about prioritizing your partner by setting aside both the time and money for a date night. While spending quality time with your partner is important, I also believe that parents should try to spend quality time with their kids as well.
Family time is important too, of course, but there is something absolutely invaluable about spending one on one time with each of your children individually. It allows you to focus on them without distraction and to talk to them about their lives without interruption. Giving your child your complete and undivided attention tells them that you love them, they are worth your time, and you enjoy them as unique individuals.
Talking with my husband, I realized that I had not spent any time alone with my daughter since our son was born. He is 13 months old now. I felt terrible with the realization that due to circumstance, the nature of my husband’s job, and a million other excuses, I had not spent any one on one time with my daughter in 13 months. For 3.5 years she was an only child with my undivided attention, but I needed her to know that even though she has a sibling now, she is still important to me.
Find the time and money for kid time
To remedy the situation, I set up a mommy and daughter date afternoon. We budgeted for an afternoon matinée to see the new Cinderella movie, complete with a fountain drink and candy. Her daddy bought her a new dress up Cinderella dress. I painted her nails, did her hair in an up-do, and let her wear a little bit of glitter and my colored Burt’s Bees Wax lip gloss. She was so excited to dress up and get to spend some special time with me. She practically glowed with her excitement.
Our “Date” Budget
All said and done we spent $20 on the dress, $10.50 for both of our tickets, $8.50 at the concession stand, and $5 to spend in the arcade before the movie started. $44 spent. We are on a really tight budget and can’t be spending $44 willy-nilly, but this mommy-daughter date was special. It was a one time extravagant memory being made together with my daughter. She will never forget the time she got to dress up like Cinderella and go to the movies, just her and mommy. It was $44 I can’t imagine having spent on anything else in the world.