Today, I am so excited to have Faith here sharing ways to be intentional with your kids! Her wisdom is so encouraging! 

Since the birth of our fourth child back in February I’ve realized some days I barely went through the motions of our day. Have you ever felt like you had desire to be intentional with your kids, but it just did not happen?

That was me.

I mentally checked off things on my to do list instead of playing with the kids or sitting down and reading a book while the youngest naps. I would squeeze in “one more” chore around the house. When he woke up it felt like a juggling act some days between trying to finish cooking meal, feeding the baby, or breaking up an argument. As we got closer to wrapping up our homeschool year, I realized I needed to focus on having an intentional summer to reconnect as a family and with each child individually.

I’m focusing on three areas and I think these will help you to be intentional with your kids as well! 

Being Outside.

Barefoot in the grass. Is there a better feeling?
Bird watching with binoculars. Watching their excitement over seeing a worm in a bird’s mouth? Too cute.
Playing with sticks and dirt and leaves and bugs. Doesn’t get any more old school than that!
Playing in the sprinkler. The giggles, need I say more?
Nature walks at a nearby walking trail. So much to explore, hear, and see.
Riding bikes. “Yes, you have to wear your helmet. Look for cars!!!!”
Playing catch. Their face when they actually catch a ball. Priceless.
Having a picnic lunch in the grass. They think it’s the coolest thing ever, even if we’re having peanut butter and jelly for the third day in a row.
Washing the vehicles together. Always end with someone getting sprayed, am I right?

Three Ways to be Intentional With Your Kids- Tips for Summer


With four littles (7 and under) I wanted things that were not hours long to lose their focus and didn’t cost (too) much money, so I came up with some ideas that I know will help you be intentional with your kids. 

Playdates. Some of our friends and family homeschool so we are able to see them more throughout the school year but we really make an effort to see our other friends while we can. Add popsicles and a kiddy pool and it makes for a fun afternoon with minimal effort.

Library. We aren’t planning to go to storytime much this summer (which is a great option too) but we still are going and picking up some fun themed books and movies to watch when it’s rainy or just too hot to be outside. My kids really love seeing the birds in our yard so we have been searching the library for bird books recently.

Local nature walks. We’ve been taking the kids on hikes and walks before they could walk! Thankfully we live in a community that is constantly making more bike paths and walking trails. There are more than a handful within a mile of our house. We also have nature preserves that we have free activities geared towards younger kids that the kids and I both really enjoy.

Local fundraisers and city festivities. In years past I honestly haven’t paid too much attention to these, but I was looking up a fundraiser that I wanted to involve the kids with and I now have 3 weekends of fun planned between July and August alone. Two of those don’t have an admission fee and are focused on summer fun with ice cream and outdoor games so I’m sure it’s going to be a blast!

Pick your own farms. We have a local farms that we go to and get produce from, but one of the farms has pick your own blueberries. It’s always fun and then we go home and make smoothies or blueberry muffins. A great way to get kids involved in eating healthy and in the kitchen. I think this will be the 4th year we’ve done this!

Focusing on their heart and one on one time.

I’ve probably said it a thousand times in the short years as a mom and I’m sure I’ll say it a thousand times more, but I never thought I would have children. But God’s plans are better than ours and now I sit here seven years into motherhood humbled and sometimes still feeling a bit lost. I’ve realized though, like with any good relationship in our lives, we have to make time for it, nurture, encourage, learn from, and listen to that other person. This includes our children. I wasn’t created to be a mom just to feed and clothe children, nor are they here just to test my temper and be told “no” all day long..

A couple months ago I started re-reading the book “The 5 Love Languages of Children” and realized quite honestly that one (or more) of the kids might not feel very loved by me simple because I wasn’t showing them love the way that they need it. If you don’t know, the 5 love languages are – physical touch, acts of service, gifts, words of affirmation, and quality time. I discovered all of us (husband and I included) have different primary love languages! I now recognize that and how each child connects to which language I can really start to focus on how they feel loved. Look at your own family and their love languages as this can help you to be intentional with your kids. 

For me, this means that chores are not a priority all day long and often get done when the kids go to bed. This means we have more tickle fights and chase each other around the house. It means my kitchen gets messier because someone is always in kitchen helping me cook. It means we have a 500 piece puzzle on our table we are trying to put together without losing pieces or my sanity. I’m buying a ‘gift’ (sometimes necessary sometimes fun) and am excited to see the look on my daughter’s face.. It means we are sitting and reading more books together. I am actually sitting and watching a movie with the family instead of cleaning or some miscellaneous task. I am asking more questions. I’m listening more. We’re dancing to our favorite songs. We take tons of silly faced pictures.

If you ask me, our intentional summer has kicked off quite nicely.

What about you? How will you focus on being intentional with your kids? 


Three Ways to be Intentional With Your Kids- Tips for Summer

Faith is a wife and stay at home/homeschool mom of 4 living in Northeast Indiana . She loves sharing from-scratch recipes, encouragement through motherhood, and all things  homemaking over at Finding Faith’s Future.

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33 comments on “3 Ways to Be Intentional With Your Kids”

  1. These are great reminders of how the simple things mean so much! I’ve been really focusing on quality time this summer, as my oldest is about to start kindergarten in the fall. His love language really is one-on-one time and I’ve really enjoyed it too!

  2. Great ideas! It’s funny how some seem like they should be so obvious but in the business of life we forget. Well I know I forget. And I only have. Thank you for the reminders and new ideas too 😊

  3. Keri, I am such a huge believer in seeking out ways to be intentional in the lives of our children. They reap the rewards and so do we. All of these little intentions add up. Enjoy your summer!

  4. Great article! I really need to work on this. I get caught up in all of the things we have planned and everything that I need to do that I forget to just be with them. We need to do more nature walks!

  5. It really isn’t hard when you think about it right? This weekend, I followed a recipe to make giant bubbles and we played with them on and off all day long in the back yard! Its amazing how much it does their hearts good as well as my own just to stop and spend that time. Nature walks are also something I’ve been wanting to do, thanks for the reminder!

  6. I love how practical these goals are. It really does make a difference when we set an intention. I no longer have littles at my house, but when I have grandkids one day, I hope to be this intentional and reasonable about our time together. Thanks for sharing, Faith.

  7. I love this. And totally something that I’m working on doing more of. Sometimes the days go by and I wonder if we got enough of that special time together. Great ideas. Thanks!

  8. Yes! Such important ideas t remember for us moms. I am pregnant with my 7th baby and although I try, there are many days where I am not intentional and go to bed feeling guilty. Or I wake up with good intentions and the day gets away from me. I appreciate the reminders to slow down and just enjoy them. I know how fast time goes by!

  9. As a work-from-home teacher, during the school year, my little plays second fiddle to my students for most of the day. She is okay with it because I am “there”. However, I try to make after school and especially this summer break intentional with our time together. I try to give her my undivided attention when she talks to me. We can’t go outside too much because we are in 115 degree heat right now! But I am a big fan of our outings. It does not even matter what we do, just as long as we spend it together. These are the moments we will both always remember! Great reminders and great post!

  10. I get so busy as mom and with my at home work that I often forget to be present with my kids. I need to remind myself to take a break from work and housework to just enjoy my kids because time goes so quick and they grow up way too fast. My oldest just hit the teen years so it was a great wake up call for me to spend more time being present with my kids, and to make sure I relax and enjoy it! Thanks for sharing your thoughts!!

  11. I love this post! I’m all about being intentional especially when it comes down to our children. Being intentional in spending time with our children is so important.

    • Thanks Jessica, it really is such an important thing to focus on. Everything fights to get our attention, but it is good to focus on the right things.

  12. This is a lovely article and some really good suggestions that I will have to make use of this summer. I dissociate often due to having PTSD, so that can really get in the way of my mothering, besides “normal” concerns and chores, writing, blogging, etc.

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