5 Lockdown Parenting Projects
The days are all starting to blend into one another. In fact, some of us aren’t even sure what day of the week it is anymore. But, those of us who are parents need to keep ourselves together and soldier on – for the kids. We might be totally stressed out, worried about what comes next and how we’re going to pay the bills, but we can’t let it show.
So, what do you do when you’re on lockdown? You could binge on all your favorite television shows between organizing distance learning sessions, cleaning, cooking, and keeping the kids occupied - or you could make the most of all this free time.
Most parents who work outside of the home usually find that they don’t have enough time to spend with their kids on a day-to-day basis, and frankly, when we’re with our kids we’re so tired from going to work and having to deal with everything at home after a long day out, that we’re not always one hundred percent there for our kids.
That’s why this gift of free time that you’ve been given (ok, that’s probably not what most of you are thinking about this pandemic) can help you out with your kids and your home in the long run.
If you start planning and doing projects with, and for, your kids now you’ll find yourself less stressed out and with more free time on your hands later, when you return to work.
Here are a few parenting projects you can do now that will make your life easier later.
1. Party Planning
You can’t hold a party right now but the social distancing and lockdowns won’t continue forever, so why not make the most of this time to plan your kids’ next birthday parties? Even if they’re celebrating their birthdays during this lockdown period there’s no reason you can’t throw them a party at a later date to make up for it.
Sit down with the birthday boy or girl (to be) and decide what kind of birthday party they want this year. Use a special birthday party notebook to write down all your birthday party plans. Decide on a:
It’s never too early to start making your own homemade games and decorations or to order them online.
Just think of the stress this will save you when you’re back at work and have thousands of other tasks to do too.
From as young as around two years old your children can start doing chores.
As parents it’s sometimes difficult when our children first start doing chores, it takes them so long and let’s face it, you need to redo everything later, which is sometimes stressful because who has time for that?
But, now you have lots of free time, and teaching your kids to do age-appropriate chores around the house is win–win for everyone.
They get to develop their sense of self-worth as you prepare them for life. And, even if they’re small and don’t do a perfect job you get the satisfaction of knowing that one day soon you won’t have to do all the housework by yourself.
You can make chore charts for each child so they know what is expected of them or you could WhatsApp them the day’s chores every morning – whatever works for your family.
Cooking with your children is often considered quality time. These are the moments they will remember and talk about when they’re older.
If you teach them age-appropriate cooking skills from when they’re small and make it fun they’ll grow up loving cooking.
If you have older kids in lockdown with you at home – you’ve got a great opportunity to give them more independence and responsibility. Make each kid responsible for a meal on a specific day – give them time to prepare, they’ll need a few days in advance.
They'll need to decide what they want to make, find recipes (online or in a recipe book), and let you know which ingredients they need you to buy.
This will free up so much of your time and their future SOs will love you for taking the time to do this!
4. Slide Show Night
We’ve all heard of family movie nights. The excitement of sharing your favorite movie with the kids. The aroma of fresh popcorn and the feeling of sharing some fun quality time with your family. But, have you heard of Slide Show Night?
Most of us use our phones as our cameras and snap shots of our kids all the time. We don’t really use photo albums that the family can page through anymore, so the kids don’t get very many opportunities to browse through the photos of when they were smaller and remember the fun times you all had together, or even see photos of your wedding or when you were pregnant with them. That’s where family slide show night comes in.
To prepare all you have to do is go through your photos and select your favorites from every year – birthdays, vacations, holidays…and save them on a drive that you can connect to your television (or any other screen). Prepare snacks and gather the family to enjoy a fun evening of throwback moments. Your kids will love it!
An added bonus with online albums or presentations is that you can share your favorite photos with their grandparents and other family members who aren't there and you haven't seen in a while.
5. Teach Them a New Hobby
Is there a game or hobby you used to love as a kid? Now is the time to teach your kids. Whether you loved doing a jigsaw puzzle or knitting, make the most of this free time to talk to your kids about what you used to do when you were younger.
If they’re interested, you can teach them a new hobby – you’ll enjoy some fun quality time together and they'll acquire a new skill.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Carol Morris