I ‘m willing to bet you’re like me, and relationships with your kids matter more to you than just about anything else.

But we’re all pulled in a million directions. We’re all short on time.

You know what, though?

I think it’s easier than we think to focus on what matters most.

Today I am sharing 3 simple ways to strengthen your relationships with your kids this year. Not one of these is complicated, cumbersome, or expensive.

Because nurturing our relationships with our kids is within reach this year, no matter what circumstances we find ourselves in.

In this episode, you’ll hear:

  • 3 simple ways to focus on what matters most this year
  • how to get out of your own way
  • some wonderful resources that will make it easy for you to build meaningful connections with your family ⬅︎ (you want to hear about these)

Listener Guide

Use the time stamps below to skip to any part of the podcast:

  • 2:20 Kids before books
  • 4:02 Use small pockets of time
  • 6:45 Don’t limit yourself!
  • 7:39 Share an experience– what does that even mean?
  • 10:49 It’s allllll about connection
  • 12:10 Snowflake Bentley
  • 13:04 For Narnia and for Aslan!
  • 14:14 This author is like nobody else on earth
  • 15:19 All about service dogs
  • 17:02 Online workshops and more
  • 18:48 Don’t forget: 3 simple things (start today!)
  • 19:58 Let the Kids Speak

Links from this episode:

I walk you through using the Snowflake Bentley Family Book Club Guide here:

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aDLaSLmFMYI]

Quotes to remember:

“You will not regret a single minute you spend nurturing your relationships with your kids no matter how old they are. Whether they’re babies or toddlers, grade schoolers, or teens, every single minute you spend nurturing your relationships with your kids is time well spent.” -Sarah Mackenzie

We want our kids to leave read-aloud time feeling seen and valued and loved. Whether we finish the story or not doesn’t matter nearly as much as connection with our kids during read-aloud time.” – Sarah Mackenzie

More free resources and booklists

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Books from this episode:

(All links are Amazon affiliate links.)

Episode 120
The Chronicles of Narnia

The Chronicles of Narnia

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

Good, evil; battles, betrayals; this classic series begins with either The Magician’s Nephew, or The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe (depending on who you ask!). There are 7 books in all -- one filled with more adventure and fantasy than the next.

More info →
Buy from Bookshop
Buy from Amazon
Strega Nona

Strega Nona

‘Boil, boil, pasta pot -- boil me some pasta nice and hot!’ Strega Nona, Big Anthony and Bambalona work hard, but occasionally need just a little magic. (Lots of fun sequels too!)

More info →
Buy from Amazon
If You Give a Mouse a Cookie (If You Give…)

If You Give a Mouse a Cookie (If You Give…)

**Description from Amazon: Celebrate the 30th anniversary of the award-winning If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, one of the most beloved children’s books of all time, from the #1 New York Times bestselling team Laura Numeroff and Felicia Bond.This book is a great first introduction to Mouse, the star of the If You Give series a...

More info →
Buy from Amazon
A Single Shard
Jamie O’Rourke and the Big Potato: An Irish Folktale

Jamie O’Rourke and the Big Potato: An Irish Folktale

**Description from Amazon: "Illustrated in dePaola's signature style, this has an inviting look. Buoyant watercolors are framed by thin orange borders....An engaging read-aloud choice for St. Patrick's Day." -- BooklistA Cheery picture book, with the artist using the lighter, brighter side of his palette....Attractive and am...

More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Snowflake Bentley

Snowflake Bentley

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

From the time he was a small boy in Vermont, Wilson Bentley saw snowflakes as small miracles. And he determined that one day his camera would capture for others the wonder of the tiny crystal. Bentley's enthusiasm for photographing snowflakes was often misunderstood in his time, but his patience and determination revealed two important truths: no two snowflakes are alike; and each one is startlingly beautiful.

More info →
Buy from Bookshop
Buy from Amazon
Jamie O’Rourke and the Pooka

Jamie O’Rourke and the Pooka

**Description from Amazon: When Jamie O'Rourke's wife leaves him alone for a week, it's up to Jamie to do the housework. But Jamie isn't just the laziest man in Ireland, he's also the messiest! When a magical pooka arrives unexpectedly and starts to do the dishes and sweep the house, Jamie thinks that maybe he's the luckiest ...

More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Bee-Bim Bop!

Bee-Bim Bop!

A bouncing, rhyming book with a sing-song story about a small child and her mother making a traditional Korean rice dish. Delightful!

More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Chester and Gus

Chester and Gus

FROM SARAH:

The heartwarming and humorous story about the remarkable bond that forms between an aspiring service dog and an autistic boy in need of a friend. (nope, the dog doesn't die 😉)

FROM THE PUBLISHER:

Chester has always wanted to become a service dog. When he fails his certification test, though, it seems like that dream will never come true--until a family adopts him. They want him to be a companion for their ten-year-old son, Gus, who has autism.

More info →
Buy from Bookshop
Buy from Amazon
Patrick, Patron Saint of Ireland

Patrick, Patron Saint of Ireland

**Description from Amazon: The story of Patrick’s life, from his noble birth in Britain, to his being captured and taken to Ireland by a group of bandits, to the “dreams” that led him to convert the Irish people to the Christian faith. DePaola also retells several well-known legends, including the story of how Patrick g...

More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Locomotive

Locomotive

It's the summer of 1869, and trains, crews, and family are traveling together, riding America’s brand-new transcontinental railroad. Brian Floca's picture books can hardly be matched. Come listen to him talk about this one in particular (and give us a little painting demonstration) at his Author Access replay in RAR Premium.

More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Raising a Hero

Raising a Hero

Author:
Series: Episodes, 120
Tag: Episode 120

From the beloved #1 New York Times best-selling children's author of If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, and If You Give... series. Max is a lovable and determined puppy with a lot to learn on his adventure of becoming someone's life-changing friend and helper. Max's puppy raiser, Sam, takes him everywher...

More info →
Buy from Amazon
Fin M’Coul: The Giant of Knockmany Hill

Fin M’Coul: The Giant of Knockmany Hill

**Description from Amazon: When the fiercest giant in all of Ireland comes knocking at his door, what can peaceful Fin M'Coul do to escape him? An ALA Notable Book, by the bestselling author-illustrator of Strega Nona, Quiet, and many more. Fin M'Coul lives atop windy Knockmany Hill, and spends his days with the other giants ...

More info →
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The World According to Narnia

The World According to Narnia

$14.95
Author:
Series: Episodes, 120
Tag: Episode 120

THE WORLD ACCORDING TO NARNIA is a journey further up and further into the imaginative world of C.S. Lewis. Along the way, Jonathan Rogers makes the case that this world-the one where we actually live-is a place no less wondrous than Narnia itself.Imagination is a serious business. It gives substanc...

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