Make a date! One on one time in large families

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When you have six children, finding one on one time can be tricky. Some weeks it seems like the best we can do are car rides when taking the children from one activity to another. This is one reason why I have tried to be very intentional about planning “dates” with my children each month.

I used to be very fastidious about going from oldest to youngest. Sometimes it’s a big date– a trip to a movie, a fancy dinner– and other times, it’s much less planned– running errands together or going for a walk in the park or grabbing at fifty cent ice cream cone at McDonalds.

This past weekend, Matthew and I had a “choose your own adventure” date.  I had a couple of end destinations in mind, but let Daniel choose whether we went left, right, or straight at pivotal intersections. We ended up at Station Square.

Station Square Pirate



First stop was a pirate. Matty wasn’t quite sure about him. He looked rather scary! But then he wanted to climb up on top of his lap and had to be convinced to sit down next to him instead.


Station Square Dancing Fountain

Next stop was the dancing fountain. While they’re much more impressive at night when the lights coordinate with the music, they were still exciting enough for Matthew. Plus he got to dance along to some good music.



Matty collageI’m not sure what made Matthew pick Joe’s Crab Shack out of all the great places to be eat. I think it was the giant shark he saw through the window, plus the promise of popcorn shrimp. Bonus– a huge freight train went by when we were eating.

After lunch we walked over to the shops housed in the old freight shed. Matthew played for a bit in the small play area and then we went home, happy and full and reconnected. But not until he “paid” for our parking!

Paying for Parking

In large or small families, how do you stay connected?