Parent-child ‘date nights’ create special memories

OKEECHOBEE – Looking forward to spending some one-on-one time with a special someone? Who is more special than your child?
In the Psychology Today article “The value of spending one-on-one time with your children,” Dr. Kyle D. Pruett noted that one-on-one time keeps your relationship healthy and in tune.

“Parenting more than one child at a time usually means we have to deal with issues using words fit for all ears — not just one pair at a time. And that gets tiring and boring. Using a homogenized approach that fits all our kids works about as well as the “one-size-fits-all” sweaters fit our bodies,” he wrote.

“Too often, we leave these one-on-ones until we need to repair emotional distance that has grown from some less-than-happy interchange. Leaving them solely for this purpose means you miss the chance to enjoy one-on-ones and employ them as preventive maintenance against that very trouble. It is money in the bank when your children trust that you have them in your heart and mind always, not just when they are in trouble.

“These moments are so important that you and your spouse should help each other have them on a regular basis for the above reasons. Time alone with mom is just different from time alone with dad, and those differences reinforce the strengths that come from each other.”

In “Life of a Homeschool Mom,” Heather Brown offers the following ideas for a parent-child “date night:”

• Take advantage of matinees.

• Check for specials at restaurants that offer free kids meals with the purchase of an adult meal (Zaxby’s in Okeechobee is offering this on Valentine’s Day!)

• Take a nature walk.

• Try miniature golfing.

• Take a class together, such as cooking or pottery.

• Go for ice cream or frozen yogurt.

• Go see the animals. (How about a visit to Arnold’s Wildlife Center in Okeechobee County?)

• Go fishing!

• Take a bike ride.

• Color together — they now make adult coloring books!

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