Be sure to take time to make memories with your children before their grown. Here are 12 great ways.
I've spent the last 11 years wondering how to teach my two daughters that they are enough, that they have worth, and that we love them. Chances are you've thought a lot about this too.
One question I constantly ask myself: How do I raise children who are a light, who love and do good, in a world full of so much that is dark?
Your daughter needs you to actively help her discover who she is while she's still young. The years fly by and suddenly she will spread her wings and fly, while we all wonder when she grew up.
For me and my family, I've learned that you can actively shape your daughter by doing things together. These 12 things give you as parents the opportunity to spend time together and connect with your daughters. They also provide teaching opportunities in a safe, natural and loving way (a great alternative to parent nagging!).
Make a Recipe Together
After being a mom, my day job (and often into-the-night-job) is as the creator and writer on the Oh, Sweet Basil food blog. Food is my passion because it's tasty, but also because of what cooking has taught me about life. Cooking together helps kids better understand math and science. Even something as simple as using a 1/4 cup twice to measure out 1/2 cup of flour helps a child understand fractions.
But even more than that, cooking with your daughter makes her feel important. It teaches her how to take charge of what she puts into her body, and how to budget. It helps her know it's ok to make mistakes. If dinner turns out awful, let her see you laugh. Then show her how to get back up again by whipping up some pancakes or going for take out.
Most important of all, cooking together makes communicating easier. Many children report that school was fine, but when you're cooking together, everyone loosens up and shares things of the heart.
Create a Tradition
I love variety. I make new dinners and desserts all the time. At one point I noticed my husband and the girls were making crepes every single Saturday morning, and I got a little ornery about it.
My husband, being the good man he is, pulled me aside and said, "One day our daughters will not care to be with their dad anymore. There will be bigger, better things and more interesting people. I need this tradition to help them know that I love them and that home is where they can always return to. It will be a tradition that helps us to have time together."
Wise words from a gentle man. Create traditions together.
For more from Carrian Cheney, check out her and her husband's new book, Our Sweet Basil Kitchen Cookbook: Fresh Twists on Family Favorites with Recipe Mashups and Unique Flavor Combinations.
The Cheneys believe that "Cooking isn't just about the food, it's about the hands that created it. For us, that means sharing a little Southern comfort and a little farm-to-table. But wherever you are and whatever flavors you are sharing, remember that good food and good people make for a good life."