Friday, October 8, 2010

Out to lunch

I just had lunch with my 5-year-old daughter. It was delicious. No, not the food. The time spent together one-on-one. I can't remember the last time I gave her my full attention for more than 5-minutes... sadly, neither can she. Even though I'm at home with my kids, there is always so much to do. Change a diaper, feed the baby, let the cats in and out. Fold some laundry, tackle the breakfast, lunch or afternoon snack dishes. Wipe a bottom, wipe a face. The phone ringing, the e-mail dinging... the darn cat scratching at the door again!

Glowing girl
 At drop-off the other day my friend, whose daughters are the same age as mine, told me about taking her kindergartner out to lunch. Just the two of them! What a novel idea. The very next day that sweet girl pictured to the left was telling me how I never have time for her. How the baby gets all the attention she should get. How little sister always interrupts our time and so on and so on (she's slightly dramatic, but what she says is true). So, I conferred with the hubby and we agreed that I'd pick her up on her half-day and take her to lunch while he would stay home with the younger two.

Here's a picture of her during our lunch. It was a dark restaurant and a picture taken from my phone, but look at the joy on that face. It can't be denied. She was so thrilled to be together, at last, with no distractions! She got to choose the restaurant and we just sat and ate and chatted about her day at school. She was excited because it was her day as the 'special person'. All the other kids practice writing her name and draw pictures of her. Then she brings home all the drawings in a little book. Very sweet.

At some point I said to her, "Isn't this great? Finally, you get all of my attention!" and she replied, "And you get all of mine, Mommy!" I was struck with the realization that not only does she need one-on-one time with me, but I need that time with her too. Especially now that she's in school two full days each week. Two days where we hardly see each other and I'm completely separate from her life. I know her so well today, but oh how that changes as they get older. This is the time in her life when we're setting the stage for our future communication. I want this little girl to know that I am always available to her. Always ready to listen and always open to hear what she has to say. I want to really know who my daughter is and have her confident and comfortable enough to share that person with me.

As parents we need time one-on-one with each of our children. It be amazing to have that kind of time everyday, but it's hard. So, I'm going to commit to spending some special time with each of them once a week. At least 30-minutes. Mondays for baby boy, Wednesdays for little sis (while baby is napping and big sis is still at school) and Friday's for my sugar plum, when Papa can be with the other two.

Do something with your child this weekend that shows them that they are your world. Appreciate small moments and long hugs. Enjoy your family.


  1. The husband and I call it... Divide and conquer! We have two girls and some evenings or weekends we plan daddy or mommy only field trips with one of the girls. It is so nice to spend time with just one.

  2. Congratulations! We are happy to present you with a blogging award. Keep on blogging. Enjoy!!!

  3. Congrats on the award!

    Just popping in from Blog Frog!

  4. Thank you so much!! I'm very happy to be recognized for something I love to do and share with others.

  5. Ohhhhh, what a wonderful moment to treasure for the both of you. When my 9 yr old was three, I remember we took a few hours (I have since then too, but this one sticks in my mind with intensity) to go out to "tea" together for a few hours. There is a very sweet tea house in town, La Tea Da,!/pages/Rochester-NY/La-Tea-Da-Tea-Room-Parlour/196750998584?v=photos
    where Moms and little ones can dress in fancy hats and gloves, or silly boas and big shoes, while enjoying delectible pastries, treats, and wonderful teas. There is a moment in my mind emblazened forever where the two of us are sitting on the front porch (the preschooler in her princess dress and fairy wings) and the sun is setting behind us. The waitress took our picture and I'll forever hold that image in my mind! 8D

  6. What a great time! I think that's a fabulous thing to do with your children...taking them out 1:1. The moments are few and far between when you can do that. Good for you! Following you from blog frog...nice to meet you! ~Kimberly

  7. Thanks for stopping by my blog- following you now.

    That's a great commitment to make to your kids. Your daughter looks so blissful in that photo, what a cutie!

  8. That is really sweet. It's awesome that you are making an effort to be a part of her life right from the start, once she becomes a teenager its usually too late.
    By the way, I found you on blogfrog and hope you follow me too.


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