May 24, 2023
by Natalie Burr
The rise of dual income households has led to less time spent with children. Parents spend an average of only three and a half hours a day with their kids. This time includes daily chores, making dinner, running errands, etc. My family is included in the dual income households. I know how hard it can be to try to spend quality time with your children and take care of the needs of your family. I myself struggle with spending enough time with my daughters while juggling daily tasks.
Ever since my oldest daughter was born, I have worked full-time and gone to school part time. This makes it difficult to spend the time I would like with her and now my second daughter as well, but I have learned that the small things mean the world to my children.
Something as small as sitting next to them while they’re playing and I’m doing homework, or dancing with them in the kitchen while making dinner, has meant so much to my kids. Although children may like things that seem small and insignificant to you, it will make your child’s day knowing that their mom or dad tried to spend time with them. When it comes to spending time with their parents, children value quality over quantity. Even though parents might only have a small part of their day to spend with their children, they can use this time to strengthen their relationship with their kids.
Because both my husband and I have to work, my mom takes care of our two daughters. We live almost an hour away and this gives us time in the car together uninterrupted. Our drive takes up a lot of our time together, so I try to make the most of it. Our favorite thing to do while we drive is listen to music and sing. My daughter loves songs and singing and this is also an opportunity for me to teach her.
We get home at dinner time. I would suggest including your kids in the cooking when it is age appropriate. My daughter is only 2 and is not able to help with much of the meal preparation. However, I include her by having her sit in the kitchen while I cook and giving her bites of food. We talk while she draws or plays with toys with me. This gives parents an opportunity to teach their children life skills such as how to be self-sufficient.
Cleaning must be done in each household, but chores can also be a fun time spent together. We include our kids by putting on some music and cleaning while we dance and sing together. Although keeping a clean house is important, spending time with your kids is most important. Your laundry and dishes will be there waiting for you day by day, but your kids will only be little once. Use the time you have together wisely to strengthen the bond between you.
With so many attacks and threats to the family, it is ultimately up to parents to teach their children how important family truly is.
Natalie is an intern with United Families International and a student at Brigham Young University-Idaho. She will graduate with a Bachelor degree in Marriage and Family Studies in July, 2023. Natalie has been married to her husband, Trevor, for 3 years and they have two daughters, Blayke and Haley. She enjoys watching TV, making things on her cri-cut machine, and camping. She is also passionate about families and child development. After graduation, Natalie plans to continue her career as a preschool teacher.