Sometimes I feel like I’m forever trying to fob my kids off or keep them entertained so I can concentrate on Getting Stuff Done . While I wait for those Lotto number to come up this will probably continue to be the case for the foreseeable future; which is a shame really because while I imagine I’m not alone here, I also know that the one thing my kids want more than anything from me is my time and attention (and snacks). Just me and them and definitely without their annoying sibling.

Image: Blogspot

Not an unreasonable request in their eyes but one that’s almost always met with a “Not now pet, I just need to…”. So when? After all the stuff is done? In which case never. Hmmm. Now might seem like a strange time to mention a Christmas ad (bear with),but if you haven’t already watched this one by IKEA then take a look, it illustrates my point beautifully. (WARNING: Viewers may experience Mum Guilt, sorry!)

Everyone ok? Excellent. I’m guessing this won’t always be the case though, I mean there’ll always be ‘stuff’ to do, but our children won’t always want to spend time with us, or even be seen dead in public with us for that matter.

Now that Spud and Flump are both at school their schedules are pretty much identical meaning that the opportunity to spend one-to-one time with either of them can be a bit tricky. We are very lucky that we get to spend a lot of family time together but I need to figure out a way to factor in a little bit of the day/week/month when I’m all theirs. (I was never this popular before I had kids!)

Of course I do make an effort to show they matter to me in lots of little ways. Whether it’s acknowledging a (rare) act of kindness towards their sibling or just listening to whatever the big news in class was today, even if they are just waffling on about Billy Tucker’s pet hamster Mr Fluffypants.

Listen Earnestly

We all know kids grow up quickly, so I’ve promised myself I’ll enjoy regular time with each of my little cherubs while I can and  I’ve come up with a fail safe way, that guarantees that it is absolutely 100% going to happen. I’m going to tell them! No chance of forgetting then right?!

To start with I’m going to let them pick a date (or a weekend) which is ‘theirs’ every month. I’m not talking spoiling them with grand days out or a trolley dash around Toys r Us (not a chance!), just doing something where we can have a chat and enjoy spending a bit of time together. Spud loves going for a walk with me in the evening when Flump is in bed and this is the type of thing we could easily do regularly. Flump has a thing about cafes (more specifically M&S cafes) so a little girly lunch date once a month is very do-able. I can’t wait to hear what kind of (ridiculous) suggestions they come up with!

It sounds so formal to have to ‘pencil in’ quality time with your own children but weeks just seem to go from one to the next in a blur of uniforms and after school clubs. In an earlier post Beauty & the Brainbox I mentioned the values in children that are thought to lead to a successful and more fulfilled life, one of which was love. Being loved obviously makes us all feel good, wanted and secure but these little acts, moments spent together showing the kids they are loved, will also allow them time to open up, build trust and feel valued. When the day does come that they would rather spend weekends with their friends than me, I have a feeling I’ll be glad I took time to build that trust!



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  1. such a great post! I am trying to make sure I have more ‘us time’ with my 8 year old as he thrives on it. the threenager gets a lot of me and a lot of positive/negative attention with his carry on. so easy to let time fly. my eldest loves cafes too particularly costa. this week after school on Thursday its just me and him for a couple of hours so costa it is! #fartglitter

  2. Ahh that’s such a great idea giving them their individual “me”. I try to make sure that we do this but it is hard with four, more so when there is always so much to do! I do love my quality time with my eldest though, he always wants to do way more exciting stuff than the little ones! #MarvMondays

    1. Funnily enough I was thinking about my friend who has 4 while writing this post and then she messaged me after reading it to say this is she really struggles with. Yes I saw your day in London recently with him, my idea of a perfect day! Thanks for reading x

      1. Yes! London was amazing, way more exciting than going to get another play centre with the little ones. 😬 I often wonder how those people with 10+ kids cope!!! Xx

  3. Love this post. Have you heard of ‘ lovebombing’? It’s the same concept that you focus on one child for a day or however long you can spare and they get to choose the activity, and it’s special one on one time. I think it’s a brilliant idea and I don’t think you should feel bad for scheduling it in at all! I’m sure lots of families would benefit from doing the same. If/when I have more children I want to do the same thing so they all get a little bit of ‘me and mummy’ time even if it’s only 10 minutes a day and half an hour at the weekend! #fartglitter

  4. *wipes eyes
    Oh wow, what a lovely post – definitely felt the “mum guilt” as I work full time, single parent, so quality time can be limited! I try to make the weekends about my little one but think I could still do more. Love the idea of him choosing what we do with the day or an outing. We often look through the Ella’s Kitchen cook book and he chooses, what he wants to eat for mains and desserts, we then order it online together, then at the weekend he helps me cook it and we both eat the same #MarvMondays

    1. Oh no don’t be sad!!! Sounds like you’re already making an effort to involve him in something you can do together though, that sounds lovely. It is hard and obviously even more so for single parents or larger families. Thank you for reading x

  5. You had me hooked at the very first line! You’re so right and I’m just the same. I constantly feel like I’m saying “I just need to….” and the truth is that I would absolutely love to just drop everything and play lego or just roll around on the floor for an hour. I make sure that we have an activity of some sort every day which is usually out and about on a play date or going to a soft play or a farm etc, but sometimes I know that I need to just stop whatever toot I’m doing and just play with them. I think I just need to bump this up my to do list every day! The dishwasher will still be there whatever happens 😉
    Fantastic post. Thanks for sharing with us at #fartglitter x

    1. I know, impossible to do everything – we need clones! As they get older it is a little bit easier as they can entertain themselves a bit more but obviously they still love a bit (lot!) of Mummy attention too! Thanks for hosting, glad I was able to join you 🙂 #fartglitter

  6. Oh I’m actually crying! That advert! I want to go pick mine up from school now and just spend the day with them – do you think school will mind?! Wow – really stopped me. Life gets so busy but it is so important to spend time with them – I’ve a post i’m publishing this week about going back for one day to when my teens were small – it looks at this point too. I love your ideas of time with them – the walks the cafes and the one weekend a month. Thank you for sharing such a lovely post #TwinklyTuesday

  7. Ahh this is really lovely, I hear myself saying ‘in a minute’ or ‘I’m just doing this first’ so often…it’s necessary sometimes of course but you’re absolutely right to highlight it I think. And your one on one plans sounds beautiful….an evening walk will be so special., I think walking offers such quality time for parents and children. And cafes are always winners! Lovely post #twinklytuesday

  8. So true! And I love that quote about sharing the little and the big things too. I can’t believe that my eldest is now at school and next year my littlest will be as well. As you say it all goes in the blink of an eye so whilst my two are fairly close in age and hard to separate, this is an excellent idea and one which I’m going to try and do too! #TwinklyTuesday xx

  9. Such a great point. It feels like you’ve taken and allowed us to take with you a moment of reflection and realisation. Children grow so quickly I think we underestimate or take for granted a lot of the time just how quickly they grow. Its so important to make and have quality time like this. Thanks for creating that moment of realisation for me 🙂 Emily #TwinklyTuesday

    1. Thanks Emily, really glad you liked the post! it’s weird but lovely to know my post has made someone else think about the same thing! Have fun whatever you decide to do together! x

  10. To start, THANK YOU! Brilliant post, and while we know this, it must be said, and more importantly done. The littles won’t be little forever, and stuff to do or be done, will.
    TY! #PassTheSauce

  11. So true everyone needs a little quality time to chat and listen, family evening meals are ours, they take about an house, not just a scoff and go and we actually listen, chat, debate and laugh together as a family, I think this is a time that works better with older children, sitting at the dinner table is more a chore for younger ones.

    1. Yes evening meals are perfect for this when the kids are older aren’t they – lure them to the table for food and they’re bound to stick around for a bit right?! I still remember us always having dinner together growing up. With little ones it’s a bit trickier with their bedtimes etc but we are able to manage Fri/Sat and extended family every Sun together which is lovely. Thank you for popping by and your lovely comments 🙂 x

  12. This is a good idea. We really need to do this. I have a little one of school today and it’s been nice to spend some time with her one on one. Thanks for sharing #BloggersCkubUK

  13. This is a brilliant post. I also feel that I don’t get to give my big girl one on one quality time as she is at school and so it’s so important to schedule this in. We also do lots as a family but it’s you time they really need every now and again. Thanks for linking. #bigpinklink

    1. Thanks Louise! Glad you enjoyed it, we’ve pencilled in our ‘dates’ for this month! 🙂 Hope you manage to grab a bit of time with your daughter x Thanks for hosting. #bigpinklink

  14. Loved that video! Absolutely eye opening, and may have caused me to shed a tear or two…
    Seriously though, this is such a wonderful post, and a great little gentle reminder of the things that matter most. My boy is 13 months old, and separation anxiety is so real with him. This post gave me a minute to sit down and think about how much that kid really loves me. Thanks <3 #KCACOLS

  15. My daughter does want a lot of attention when she is home so i try to take my me time while she is at school all though i usually end up using it blogging and resting when im unwell. Great post.

    Angela from Daysinbed

  16. This is a wonderful post! An important reminder of what should really be most when your children are little. I love the idea of scheduling and asking what they want to do. I am going to hug my children now, especially after watching that video! Thanks for sharing with #PasstheSauce

    1. Ahh thank you! Yes we have our dates pencilled in for this month!! Great video, gets the point across perfectly doesn’t it? Thanks for hosting #passthesauce , see you over on #bigpinklink next week!! 😀

  17. This made me cry! I have also written about having and wanting more quality time and it is so sad but one of the first things that seems to go when we get busy is family time. I loved the video clip too. It is so good to get a reminder like this. TY for linking up to #FamilyFun 🎉

  18. Gosh that video made me nearly cry, I felt a lump in my throat as I know, even at 18 months old I know I don’t give enough of my undivided attention to my little girl. I love the idea of pencilling in a date each month. #FamilyFun

  19. What a fab idea. I know I need to make more time for Piglet whenever I can. Working full time, I sometimes feel like he prefers my mum to me (last week she came to watch us at swimming class and he kept trying to climb out of the pool and go to her!) so I love the idea of special mummy-child time, and am already trying to do that when I can.

  20. Oh my goodness the advert, the advert!! It just had me in tears. It is very true what you say about making time for some one to one time and it doesn’t need to be anything grand, just a walk like you do or lunch in a m&s cafe (that made me laugh because Youngest is the same). This is a brilliant post, thanks for the little kick up the bum 🙂 #fabfriday

    1. I know!!! So well done, gets the point across really well I think. Haha what is it with girls and cafes- I was the same as a kid! Aww thanks glad you enjoyed it- have fun whatever you get up to! X

  21. My eyes appear to be leaking. Oh I love this post, it’s so true that our kids want and need us and our time rather than more and more toys. We had a lovely time last weekend, just playing football in the park and walking by the river. It felt so good to just spend time with each other with no distractions. We definitely need to do it more often. #FabFridayPost

    1. Oh I know, I get something in my eye every time I watch it too!! Glad you enjoyed the post, it’s lovely to be able to spend time together with them but I’d need a clone (or a cleaner!) somedays! Thanks for stopping by and commenting x

  22. This is so true – since have our daughter, we’ve had to remind ourselves that my stepson still needs his one to one time with his Dad. It means so much to him, even if it’s just kicking the football around for a couple of hours or going for a burger to have a proper chat just the two of them, even though he loves being with the whole family too. Lovely post x #familyfun

  23. We have to spread ourselves across so many areas it’s tough sometimes and occasionally some “me-time” is needed too. My teenagers demand so much of me that I want to scream but my time left with them is evaporating, so I am making the most of every minute, even if it means taking a deep breath sometimes. #picknmix

  24. I think scheduling the time is a great idea – it gives the kids something to look forward to and it makes sure that you have to leave that time free once they know about it
    Thanks for linking up to #BloggerClubUK 🙂

  25. I love the idea of quality time ‘dates.’ Mother would totally relate to mum guilt – she feels guilty if she’s not spending time with me but she does need some me-time (mind you, so do I; sometimes I feel like she’s obsessed with me, always hanging round me). It’s all such a balance but the main thing is that there is so much love at the heart of all your and Mother’s intentions x #fortheloveofBLOG

  26. Love this idea of a treat for each one but it’s simple. We have three now a five month old, a four year old and a six year old the six year old has special needs and type 1 so needs a lot of time and attention and the baby well needs us to do everything 😀 I think I will adopt something for our middle boy who needs us to himself and get the time he deserves #justanotherlinky

  27. The last 7 months for us have been very busy and hard, so I haven’t spent as much time with my kids as I would have liked. Now things are getting back to normal I am trying to make more time for them, but life always seems to get in the way.
    Great post.

  28. Oh, they are going to have so much fun deciding on where they want to go! I think scheduling it is perfectly acceptable, it just means that it will definately happen, they won’t let you forget it! Can’t wait to find out what you get up to! #fortheloveofblog

  29. I know what you mean when time just fly passed by. It is great that you have started early. Trust is so important between parents and their kids. I think I will be doing the same soon – Ethan is already asking to his friend house for a playdate, etc. I love the ad – so so true.

    Thank you so much for linking up with us again on #FabFridayPost x

  30. Flipping hell woman you should have put more of a warning on that video. Choked. Weeping. I saw something similar a few months ago but this one…trust Ikea to come up with one that had me bawling.
    I like your plan. I’m was already a not now mummy before I started the blog. But now… #totalshame #BigPinkLink

  31. There is only 19 months between my two boys, so one on one time has always been in short supply. However when one of them is at a friends house we do get it and try to make it a bit special for the one at home. 🙂

    Thanks for linking up to #PicknMix

    Stevie x

  32. The thing is we are all always so busy. I have made the decision that I will make sure we have two holidays every year, one as a couple – when my daughter is away with her dad, and one as a family. This is what we do, we travel, and we have the best times doing so and I get quality time with my partner who works nights so when I’m home he’s usually asleep, and also as a family – again, work patterns, daughter away at weekends, we don’t get a lot of family time together. However my daughter and I walk to school together which takes us half hour each way and that gives us time to chat and talk, plus it’s just me and her in the evenings…however I do find myself saying not now a lot, and I shouldn’t because it will stop one day. #fortheloveofblog

    1. Yes you’re right, there’s always something to be done isn’t there? Sounds like you already have a great balance though! Great that you and your partner get away for some time together too, just as important especially as he works nights. Thanks for reading, x

  33. Such a lovely post, and I think that this is so important to spend one-to-one time with your children. You’re right they grow up so fast, and it’s important that you got to know your child, and they also build their trust in you. Their personalities and emotions change so much as they get older, and we need to embrace that. I read a post yesterday that is all about stopping and being with your children, rather than always rushing off to do something (even thought there is always something to do), they’re only young once and we need to enjoy it. Thanks so much for linking up at #fortheloveofBLOG this week. Claire x

    1. Thanks Claire, they do seem to be growing up far more quickly than I’d like!! This morning instead of getting on with ‘stuff’ I played ‘hospitals’ with Flump. Of course half an hour wasn’t enough for her but still, she enjoyed it while it lasted! 😄

  34. We’ve got a week in Devon in July and I’m determined we’re all going to spend time together without screens etc focusing on everything each other is saying and doing! #passthesauce

  35. I think pencilling in that special time is a great idea – actually I was just reading about how we should allocated special play time with out children to make sure they are getting what they need emotionally from us, seeing as play is their form of connection and communication. Certainly food for thought! Thanks for linking up to #coolmumclub lovely xx

  36. This is so true. I only have 1 and feel it difficult to have quality one on one time. I think planning something each month is a great idea! Thanks for linking up with the #FavFridayPost

  37. Brilliant post. It’s hard when you have children, especially more than one to find time for them. It’s a great idea you have and one I think I’ll take up once Finley starts school. At the moment I get a Friday with Finley & the rest are Noah’s but come September it will all change. Thanks for linking up to #justanotherlinky xx

  38. Ah yes, trying to keep them entertained to get stuff done, or telling them to wait a minute as I’m just doing something, is very familiar! You’re right – putting aside time to properly spend with them is important. #justanotherlinky

  39. Pingback: Family Fun Linky |

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