Summer is here! School is out. Parents, we are done with the anxiety of late night projects, papers that are due tomorrow, cramming for tests, and all the end of the year parties and events. Have you noticed that May is just like December for public school? Both months have all these events and parties in which your children participate. The difference is the Christmas season makes you want to go to these events. In May, you are done!
When it is summer time, there is so much more opportunity for family time. There are weekend trips to see family, family vacations that are a week long, and afternoon trips to enjoy. Some of my favorite memories as a kid and as a parent are these trips.
I want to encourage you to use this summer for building your relationship with your children. I have two free resources as part of today's article. Both resources are at the bottom of the article!
The first free resource is what I call the MSM Check Up. There are two versions: mom and dad. In this resource, you have 30 questions that you should evaluate from your child's perspective. Then use the next 30 days to reflect and discuss how you can improve some of those questions. One of my favorite questions is Day 8:
When I want to talk to my dad...
A. He always has time to listen to me.
B. I feel he is too busy for me.
C. I don't think he would understand.
D. I'm afraid to talk to my dad.
Wherever you find yourself in these questions, do not panic! Let God use this summer to bring you and your child closer. However, you may say, "I do not know where to start!" That is fair! Many of us can get overwhelmed when we reach out to our children. What if they push us away?
This brings me to my second resource, the Relationship Builders. This one gives you the principles of being an intentional parent and using indirect parenting. Sometimes the front door is shut when engaging your student, but that does not mean the back door is. In this resource, I provide some ideas of things to do together that will open opportunities for you to have solid conversations. Here are some examples...
1. Invite them into your hobby (fishing, golf, sewing, etc.)
2. Buy a ping pong table
3. WiFi Free Night
4. Mani-Pedi Day (for the ladies...)
It's in these moments that God can do a great work to grow us closer to Him and closer as a family if we are intentional with our time and our conversations!
Remember, we are a bunch of sinner parents trying to raise sinner kids to be godly! So, you and I are going to make a bunch of mistakes. That is ok, God is more than able to compensate for our mistakes. It is more important that we love our children and guide them to Jesus!