I may be self-employed, but that doesn’t mean that I spend my days eating bon bons curled up on the couch with my laptop. The majority of my work is online, yes, but my days are jammed pack with meeting deadlines before my kids are home from school. Two days a week I work at a client’s office, and will often get home after my kids and husband are home.
Then there is homework and dinner prep — we rarely eat out — and all of the stuff that can swallow up our days. It can be too easy to get caught up in “doing” instead of “being.” Here’s what we do to make sure that we connect in those few hours we have before our kids are tucked into bed.
1. Eat dinner together. We rarely eat out because we’re cheap, we like to eat healthy, and the closest restaurant with decent food is half an hour away. If eating out makes it easier for you to connect, do it! Sharing a meal and talking about your day is a big part of being a close-knit family. Check out my tips for making family dinners a priority.
2. Help your kids with their homework. I know, I know. Math sucks (says the accountant). My kids can get stressed out if they can’t figure things out, so I’ll lighten their mood with humor.
3. Read together. My younger two have reading “homework” for school, so I’ll sit with each of them while they read to me and we’ll chat about the little things while we sit there. Here are some tips for instilling more reading into your kid’s life.
4. Play a game of cards. School and work nights are too busy to bust out the Monopoly board, but a few rounds of Uno are a fun way to have laughs together. Then when you know you’ll have more time, commit to a family game night. Even if it’s only once a month, you have something planned your kids can count on!
5. End the day with more than a kiss. When we tuck our kids in, we will talk a bit about that day, and the day coming up. We then ask them what they’re thankful for, and then we pray with them before we kiss them and hug them and wish them sweet dreams.
How do you connect with your kids after you get home from work?