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Mother and daughter reading a book at the library

Family Dates: A Great Way to Strengthen Relationships

By: Adrianna and Ryan Walden

Friends have lunch dates. Children have play dates. It’s time for parents to make family dates with their children.

When we set aside a specific date and time for someone, it allows us to connect, relate, and talk to each other without any interruptions. Not only do the kiddos benefit from this, but the parents do as well.

How often should you go on a family date? Once a month is a great starting place, but truly this depends on your family's schedule and how many children you have. I suggest keeping it consistent, whatever schedule your family decides on, and writing it on the calendar as an important event.

Both Ryan and I take Sophia out on a family date separately. One of my all-time favorites was taking Sophia to a tea room for lunch. We wore dresses and ate tiny treats, all while laughing with our pinkies in the air, sipping from our fancy cups. Ryan's favorite date with Sophia is a toss-up between going to the park and dinner with dessert at a frozen yogurt spot. Sophia says she loves them all.

If you want to strengthen your relationship with your child, spending one-on-one time with them is key. The possibilities are endless. Here are a few suggestions to get you started:

  • Go to a bookstore or the library. Spend some time reading at a cafe.
  • Swim at an indoor recreation center.
  • Visit a craft store to find supplies to make a special project.
  • Read a book and then watch the film version.
  • Plan, shop, and cook a meal together.
  • Go out to dinner and a movie.
  • Visit the zoo.
  • Take a walk together.

Valentine’s Day, which will be here shortly, is a great opportunity to plan a special outing with your child. 

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About Adrianna and Ryan Walden

About Adrianna and Ryan  Walden

Ryan and Adrianna Walden have been married for 17 years. The two met when she was working for an arena football team in Norfolk where he was playing football. Ryan is a service coordinator with the Chesapeake Early Intervention Program and Adrianna is a Licensing Specialist for Children's Programs with the Department of Education. Both enjoyed teaching CHKD’s "Happiest Baby" class together for over a decade. Together they have one daughter, who despite early health issues, is now a thriving and happy teen. The Walden's have a passion for working with children and married couples.