Being a parent involves a lot of things, such as teaching your child manners and responsibility. It is also essential to have fun with your child and meet his or her emotional needs. Your child needs a lot of attention and when you meet these needs you have a much better chance of your child growing up to be a balanced and happy person.
Bonding with your child will not only strengthen your relationship with your child, it will also make you a more relaxed and patient parent.
While disciplining your child is important, knowing when to relax and have fun is also vital. Here are some ideas for ways to bond with your child.
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Ways To Bond With Your Child
I recently wrote an article on why reading with your child is so important so I won’t go into great detail about that. Let’s just keep it simple and say that reading is fun and you can incorporate reading to your child into your daily routine.
Reading your child a bedtime story every night will give you some special quiet time every day that will most certainly create a stronger bond between you.
Giving Your Child A Massage
A massage is a wonderful way to bond with your child, plus massage comes with incredible health benefits too.
Massaging your child just before bed will help your child to relax and chances are that your child will sleep better for it. If your child is suffering from any sort of anxiety and/ or sleep problems like night terrors then I highly recommend massaging your child before bed.
Quiet Talk Time before Bed
Having a quiet talk with your child just before bed is an excellent way to bond, plus you have a quiet moment to check how your child’s day was and if there was anything that went wrong you can process that with your child.
I’m not sure about you, but very often my days are a whirlwind of getting kids ready and to school in the morning, rushing through work, fetching the kids, getting them fed and looked after… before I know it the day has gone and I don’t actually know how my kids days went and if anything is bothering them.
I find this moment before bed one of the first truly quiet moments with my child and the perfect opportunity to go through their day with them.
It is my last chance for me to let my children know how much I love them and care about them.
Kisses and Cuddles
I believe cuddling is so important and this can be done at all times during the day. I kiss and cuddle my kids every opportunity I can. I just can’t help it and my kids suck up this kind of attention.
There are loads of opportunities for kisses and cuddles, from early morning cuddles when my kids wake up and come to my bed to cuddling when I read them their bed time story.
I am not a fan of lots of screen time, but I do believe that movies can be fun and exciting to watch together.
Every Friday is family movie night at our home. When I pick the kids up from play school we go to the shop on the way home and buy cooldrinks, sweets and chips. It is our weekly naughtiness and the kids love it.
If there is a new movie that comes on DSTV during the week I will record it for them or I will check if there is something good on Box Office. Netflix also has lots of great things to watch for kid and adults.
Otherwise I may buy a movie specially for movie night.
Plus when we are watching the movie we have cuddle time. My kids absolutely love Friday movie night.
Kids just love colouring in and painting. We have a huge box called the art box and I have all sorts of messy and fun things in there from paint, glue, and glitter, to colourful odds and ends. There are so many amazing arts and crafts supplies you can find online.
Every now and then we cover the table with newspaper and have some fun.
Kids love getting creative and there are so many more kids activities you can do other than art activities.
You can make your own playdough, foam dough, bath paint, paint and glitter glue. You can make your own slime, bouncy balls and bath bombs. Seriously there are so many things you can do that cost hardly anything and will keep your kids entertained for hours.
Plus you will get to have loads of fun with your kids and be the coolest mom around.
Go For A Milkshake Or Ice Cream
Outings don’t always have to cost a fortune or take up a huge amount of time. Just going out for a quick milkshake or ice cream could make your kids day and give you some one on one time with them.
Yesterday I took my kids for a quick ice lolly at Scott’s Nursery and they loved it.
Go For A Picnic At A Park
If you are looking for fun and exciting ways to bond with your child a picnic should be high on your list of things to do.
I don’t know about your kids, but mine are obsessed with picnics. If you have spare time that would normally be what I call waiting time then keep a blanket in the car and have a picnic if the weather is good.
We have a picnic every week since there is a gap of two hours between play school finishing and my daughter’s gymnastics so instead of spending the time driving back and forth we have a picnic and make good use of that time.
Baking And Cooking
If I tell my kids we are going to make cupcakes I can actually see them shivering with excitement! I have the best cupcake recipe that I must actually share with you because it really is a no flop chocolate cupcake recipe.
I also let my kids help me prepare supper and they love it.
It provides time together plus they are also learning valuable skills in the kitchen. Yes I have to admit supper is slow to make but it sure beats having my kids fighting for my attention while I struggle to cook.
Making small changes like letting them help with the supper changes it from a struggle to good bonding time. Their absolute favorite is making our own pizza dough from scratch and then we each make our own pizza. We once made a gingerbread house, it took us 2 days to make it and it was incredible.
There are many ways to bond with your child and I hope this post has given you some inspiration to bond with your kids.
It’s so difficult when you have 2 kids to spend alone time with one! Would luv some advice.
Yes I know exactly what you mean @tania-brewis. I also have two with 2 years 2 months between them. I think you have exactly the same age gap?
The one thing I do every evening is spend some quality time with each of them before bed. My older child that is 5 years old watches some tv while I bath my 3 year old. Then my daughter gets in the bath while I give my 3 year old son a massage, read him a story and we chat for a bit.
Then I put him in bed and I do the massage, story and chat with my daughter before I put her into bed.
Of course I spend some time with both of them during the day, but it is in the evening before they go to bed that they each get their alone time. You didn’t say how old your kids are though, just the age gap.
Hopefully my routine will help you a bit?
Thank you so much Lynne. This will help a lot! Appreciate your feedback. Have a wonderful day xx
It is a pleasure @tania-brewis 🙂 And good luck! I’m not sure how old your two are but mine are getting easier now and I am starting to really enjoy them so much more now that I am not fighting to get everything done as much as before!
Oh I have my days that are not great still, but there are some beautiful moments.
Mieke is turning 3 at the 31st of March, and Imke is 5 years old.
Mieke is turning 3 on the 31st of March, and Imke is 5 years old.
Oh then it will get easier for you very quickly! My daughter turned 5 in October last year and my son turned 3 in December… and in the last maybe 2 months it has gotten so much easier. My son has grown up so much in the last month and that has really helped. It is amazing how just one or two months can make such a difference. So hang in there!
Can’t wait when it gets easier…both of them require so much attention especially with Imke, who turned 5 September last year, started Grade R this year. They both are mommies girls, so very attached to me (but Mieke more than Imke).
Both our kids are the same age ;o)
Im already spending alot of these fun tips with my son…reading together but he cant read with i read for him i talk to to him not just before bed time but as much as i can having conversations….bath time i let him kick water and sit and play with help of mommy he enjoy and laugh so much if i clap hands and say wow jump jump thats in his walker then he gets excited and jump wild for a 6 month old his already so strong in his legs his standing in the walker like he his a pro jump and balance himself i spend every moment i can with him…lucky to just have one for now all attention going to one….good luck mommies with 2 or more u can do it and u got it all under control
I really find this article interesting. I have a 10 week old baby boy and this will really be beneficial to us when he is older. And what’s nice is, is that we have already implement most of the mentioned. I love cuddling with my boy and he enjoys reading time, even though he doesn’t understand what I’m reading but the facial expressions he makes when making funny voices are priceless
Congrats on your new baby @ani1009 🙂 Your baby may not understand your words but he is learning so much from you from reading! You will be so surprised how quickly your baby will start to understand you and the more you talk, interact and read to him the faster it will happen 🙂
I loved this article thank you! Me and my 12 week old cuddle and play. I dont read to hom yet as i dont think he will understand English. But this is good advice and i love it
Are you Afrikaans @karla? There are so many lovely Afrikaans books too. My husband is Afrikaans so my kids have English and Afrikaans books. There is one Afrikaans Liedjies books we have that is so much fun and perfect for little ones. It is more than just understanding the words, but also about hearing your voice.
I try find that book for you so I can give you the title. It really is a gem!
Yes we are afrikaans. Please do get me the title that would help so muck thank you Lynn
It is Baba se Eerste Rympies an Liedjies – it is a lovely book with cardboard pages so perfect for when baby starts to chew on the pages, which he will do! I took a photo, please excuse it though it is looking grubby since it is now nearly 5 years old. I am sure I bought it at Bargain Books.
Thank you inhope i will get one of these
Have a browse around Bargain Books, they really are a great book store. If they don’t have it in stock just ask them if they can order it in for you.
They order things in for me often with no hassles. But if they can’t supply you with this book just have a poke around they have a great Afrikaans section for kids and baby books. I am sure you will find something great.
i do spend time with my kids but most the things you mentioned im not doing them, i will start now to do that. thank you
My son and I we always together he likes to have a little chat before he sleeps telling me all about his day and what happens in creche and we play puzzle games together
Im getting to the movie time talking and reading together…still a while but ill get there in he mean time i find different bonding ways im so proud his now 8 months and his 2 top teeth is breaking trough i see them then he will have 4.
Cuddle with love and he start singing for me nkosi sikela i africa lol bond for some time before his sleeping
That’s so sweet @aasiya
Wow! how insightful! Thanks a mil for this article. It reallly is amazing
These are great tips and are absolutely doable.
I can’t wait for JD to be old enough so that I can start reading bed time stories to him. At this stage he doesn’t appreciate it but I do show him pictures and call each animal or object by name.
I’ve already started buying cute children’s books that I see on special at leisure books and the other day I got a great book with fairytales @ R20.00 on Bidorbuy.
I love stealing hugs and kisses at every opportunity I get. I do this whenever I can because there will be a time when he will be older and wouldn’t want this anymore. At the moment he is still enjoying it and participate when asked. 🙂
We like to go to the mall at least once or twice every month for a milkshake or ice cream. It really is a nice treat and a good way to spend some family time together.
I love the idea of arts and crafts.
This is a hobby that I’ve always loved and I can just imagine the fun we would have together. I especially look forward to doing some coloring in and painting together.
I can ‘t wait to see the “creations”that we would come up with.
The idea of quiet talk time before bed is really great for bonding and communication is so important. Having these talks will let your child know that you’re there for them to talk about whatever is on their minds and that you have a keen interest in their daily activities. It’s always good to be an active parent rather than giving the impression that you don’t care.
Fantastic article indeed.
I have done all activities listed in the article. I have a little boy, but that never stopped us from baking. He really enjoys decorating the cupcakes. This makes an awesome activity for the rainy days.
I always have some craft that I keep my little one busy with, once he completes the craft task then I find another. Keeping him occupied assists in completing the simple household chores.
Recently he was busy collecting paper roll holders to make a toy car garage for multiple car storage. Took him 3 weeks and the first one was completed, he had his grandparents collecting the paper roll holders for him as well. He was so proud of his accomplishment.
I loved this. My daughter is 5 and we do a lot of this together, except the arts and crafts. I have no patience and even less creativity when it comes to this, but daddy can spend hours doing this (and I think she secretly prefers him doing it with her anyways ?). My absolute favourite time of the day with her is bedtime. She doesnt want Daddy to lie with her. So 6 out of 7 nights I lie with her in her bed, we tickle, laugh and play around. Then its story time. After the story we always lie quietly and talk about our day. Just her and I. It’s when I get the most information and when she confides in me. We talk about all the things that are bothering her and ways she can deal with them. I encourage her to tell me everything and i promise that it’s a safe zone for her. We always end it off with a i love u and a cuddle. She often falls asleep with her hand on my cheek. I just hope that it lasts forever. I want my daughter to feel she can always confide in me and for as long as i can i will hold on to these moments.
This post hits home.❤️ I have a 23 month old and a 4 month old. Finding that balance between two babies who require so much of my time and attention can become difficult at times, but I always try my best to do activities to include both of them. My older baby loves his little sister more than I thought possible so if I sit doing one-on-one activities with him, I put her in her rocker and ask him to show her what we are doing. Many times I will ask my husband to take our youngest baby so that I can do things alone with our boy to let him know that he is still loved. Quality time is definitely important to let our kids know that they are loved equally, but individually.❤️
I’m so coping everything on this list even tho there are some that I already do. Bonding with my 27 months is really an essential part of what makes me a mom. Thanks Lynne…..
This post is very helpful. I thought I’d this by the time she turns 3. We normally go for walks and ice creams. Cuddles are our thing. I need to start implementing others as well. Thank you Lynne
In todays life you need to build a strong bond with your kids, so that they will place their trust and feel comfortable talking to you about anything and they will also be open with you about what’s going on in their life and they will come to you for advice because they know you won’t judge.
absolutely love all those tips and cannot wait to start coooking and baking with my kiddo