As a stay-at-home mom, I’ve had more one-on-one time with my oldest daughter, Ella, than I know what to do with. Even after my second daughter Ani was born, Ella and I have still had a lot of time with just the two of us because Ani naps so much more than Ella does.
In the early days, I got quite a bit of time by myself with Ani, too, since she went to bed hours after Ella did, but now that they both go to bed around the same time, the time that I spend with just Ani is definitely more rare.
Here are a few times that I try to squeeze in some time to focus just on her:
- Bedtime routine. When my husband is home in the evenings, I have him get Ella ready for bed so that I can focus on Ani as I get her changed and into pajamas.
- Preschool. I am part of preschool co-op with a couple of friends, so a couple of mornings a month, I have Ani all to myself. Usually she naps for a good chunk of it, but it’s a nice break from productivity when she wakes up and I can snuggle her for as long as I like.
- The middle of the night. I certainly won’t complain when she starts sleeping through the night, but I find that I don’t mind too much getting up for ten minutes in the middle of the night to feed Ani and then tuck her quietly back into her bed afterward. She’s so sleepy and snuggly at that time, I love her more than ever.
- Story time. We attend the weekly story time at our library for toddlers and, while Ella runs to the front and sits directly in front of the librarian, I can hang out at the back of the room and sit with Ani on my lap, singing along with her during the songs, and watching her take in all the older children.
- Mornings. Ani wakes up about 30 minutes earlier, generally, than Ella does, and my husband and I love this time to snuggle her in bed, make her laugh, and generally just exclaim over what a darling child we have.
How do you fit in one-on-one time with a younger child?