Sunday, August 17, 2008

Noticing The Little Things

Participating in the Face Time With Kids Challenge during the month of August has really opened my eyes to a lot of things. Most importantly, I've noticed that face time does not have to be a big event. There is an incredible amount of quality time found just in being with my kids and giving them my full, undivided attention.

Stopping at random intervals throughout the day, for even just 15 minutes at a time, I've really been able to invest myself 100% in their days. The time we have spent together has been simple, but so fulfilling for them. I can see it in their faces. They just want my uninterrupted time, and even a little bit of it is so satisfying.

I've made sure I pay attention to these little moments though. I've also made sure I put myself in the moment fully without worrying about what is left on my to-do list for the day. Some of the simple things we have done are:

  • Reading books with Alex and Olivia
  • Sitting on the floor with Gracie and pulling out every toy in the toybox together
  • Playing Brain Age on Nintendo DS with Isabelle
  • Coloring with everyone (I really want to do this more often. Is there anything more relaxing then coloring a picture from start to finish?)
  • Rotating who sits on the counter with me while I cook, and making sure I really engage with them and teach them how to help me
  • Going to the "pretend pool" with Alex and letting him rescue me from the alligators
  • Building a couch cushion club house together and sitting with all of the kids and all of their stuffed animals (and having Alex sit on my lap and whisper in my ear "we're so lucky Mama!")
  • Playing coach while Isabelle, Alex and Olivia participate in their own Olympics
  • Laying on the floor with Gracie, playing "night-night" over and over again, letting her climb all over me
Since the weather warmed up, we have been going for walks every day that we are able to. But, I've made a concentrated effort this month to stop and rescue worms from the sidewalk, pick dandelions, or play "spy" as we walk.

All of these little things really add up. And they are all things that we actually do every day. I just never noticed them before because I rarely gave each activity my complete attention. When I am willing to put everything else on hold though, face time seems to happen naturally. Now that I have noticed this, I will make sure it happens every day, both for the benefit of my kids and for myself.

If you'd like to join in the Face Time With The Kids challenge this month, head on over to Happy To Be At Home.


Michele 12:58 AM  

We do a lot of "laying on the floor playing night-night" and "pulling every toy out of the bin" too! :)

Your list sounds so fun! :)

Amy 10:35 AM  

Anything is doable for 15 minutes! Thanks for the reminder.

Lauren @ Thingish Things 9:51 PM  

Oh, I love that you let one of your kids sit on the counter while you cook! What a great idea!

Lauren @ Thingish Things 9:52 PM  

Oh, and I totally agree about the coloring! I still love it :)

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