Before delving into unique bonding opportunities with your kids, it’s essential to recognize the significance of these moments, particularly for adoptive parents and children in foster care. Bonding is not just about creating enjoyable memories; it’s about building strong connections and nurturing relationships that foster a sense of belonging and security. For adoptive parents, these bonding experiences provide invaluable opportunities to deepen their connection with their children, especially as they navigate the complexities of adoption. Similarly, for children in foster care, who may have experienced disruptions and uncertainties in their lives, bonding activities offer moments of stability, trust, and love. By engaging in activities that promote bonding, such as playing video games, painting, gardening, listening to audiobooks, or watching shows together, adoptive parents can create environments where their children feel safe, valued, and understood. These unconventional bonding experiences not only strengthen family bonds, but they also lay the foundation for lifelong relationships built on love, trust, and mutual respect.

Unique Ways to Bond With Your Kids

Spring break is about to break upon this house. Like an ominous cloud or crashing wave, I am sitting here looking up with dread and wondering if I’m going to be able to survive. 

(Okay, I kid. A little.) Actually, as my kids get older it is getting easier to find things to do together that we actually want to do to bond. For ages, it’s been reading the same story and playing Candyland for the billionth time while pretending I’m not actually bored out of my mind. Now that they are all third grade and up, things like board games, movies, and out-of-the-house activities aren’t simply a source of anxiety or dread. 

I’m almost looking forward to it if I can convince myself to ignore the possibility they will still spend half the week fighting with each other.  I enjoy time to just let them relax and sleep as long as they need, and it’s a great time for me to get projects done around the house because one, I have little helpers that are helpful, and two, I can start and don’t have to stop to go do school pick up. 

A thing I enjoy about longer breaks is that we get time to talk about things that aren’t school-related. As a mom, it bums me out to have to ask about math homework repeatedly and I know it bums them out too. So, a few uninterrupted days to hang out school-free gives us all a chance to talk about other more important and less school-centric things. 

Video Games

I’m aware there are whole generations who think this is rotting our brains. I am a millennial who had some sort of video game console from the age of six. I graduated from college with honors, so I think we can rule out brain rot. My very favorite part is that it gives their dad time to do things that mean a lot to them. Their very favorite thing to do together, which has helped them bond the most this year, was playing cooperative open-world video games. It’s so fun to hear them talk about how they’re building their houses or planting their gardens together. They talk strategy over meals and plot what to do next. And while I’m not convinced Valheim, Stardew Valley, or Minecraft are going to be integral to their future, finding a way for them to connect with their dad certainly is. 


This is messy but once again, they’re old enough now that it isn’t as much a chance for mess as it would have been even a year ago. I love working beside one another to create pretty things. 


I didn’t even know we were bonding, learning each other’s subtle body language and simply enjoying one another’s company while making memories until we were all done and I sat back to think about it. There’s something about the purpose-driven task of it, but it is also an expression of beauty and a chance for growth.  Let me be totally honest here and say last year we had a bit of a “what the heck?!” flower bed because my youngest decided she should just take the seed packets, mix them together and toss them at the tilled dirt. I just barely managed to recover from the stress of the activity when flowers started to bloom a month later it was a point of pride for her that we had done that together. Gardening also gave us the space to have conversations about soil, what makes plants grow best, and, in relation, what helps people grow best. It doesn’t always work out; but at the end of the day, there’s a task we accomplished together and that’s pretty cool. 

Listening to Audiobooks

To anyone who knows me, it should come as no shock that my love for books is a fairly large portion of my personality.  Sharing favorites like “The Hobbit”, “The Chronicles of Narnia”, and “Redwall”  has been so much fun for me. We do this on long car rides mostly; but if we’re really into a book, we might just listen on the way to school in the morning or sit in the car until the chapter is over at home. 

Watching shows together

There are several different shows that are age-appropriate and fun to watch. They all have a good time discussing the plat together and are learning more about each other and how to enjoy things. 

Unique Ways to Bond With Your Kids

Those are our family’s unconventional ways to bond with and enjoy each other. Of course, we do things like going on walks and taking trips when money isn’t tight. We go on picnics and ride bikes. We watch movies and cook together. I like finding ways for us to enjoy being around one another which can sometimes be a big ask. Everyone has different personalities and sometimes those personalities clash in very ugly ways. Sometimes activities I had planned that I thought would be so fun end up being … not that. Sometimes it feels like nobody will ever get along again. I hate those days. But that’s life sometimes. I’m glad we get the opportunities to grow together when they come around. 

Unique Ways to Bond With Your Kids