Dating at the Age of 3


Date BrooksMy husband and I made the decision that we would allow our daughter to start dating at the age of 3. A bit unconventional? That’s putting it gently. And get this, super protective dad wasn’t even curious about the boys she might be bringing home. Her dates were always old enough (by several decades), would pay for dinner (and even ice cream sometimes), and in fact, they were married already. Yep….that’s how cool we are as parents. The coolest.

So just who were these people courting our preschool daughter …..well, I can tell you, they always tell her they love her. And they mean it….a love beyond comprehension. Their names??? Well, Mom and Dad of course. Yep, in our family we believe in dating our kids. Our 3 year old son is dating now too. Now, this mama has not been on a REAL date since I was 15….when I started dating my amazing husband (YIKES….20 years ago….surely my math is wrong….moving on….). So if you ask me REAL dating advice, I will be about as useful as a tree trunk, but ask me about dating my kids and I will gush for days. Seriously, just walk away from me at some point. I can take a hint.

With two young kiddos at home, it is so easy to get caught up in the mundane daily routine sometime. We do this at this time and that at that time. On Tuesdays we go here and on Thursdays we go there. But on one special day each month in our house. We scoop up whichever child is our “match” that month, and we whisk them away on an adventure. Just one on one…..mono y mono. We go to a museum, we hike a mountain, we do something for the very first time, we eat. And those are just the things we plan.

We also laugh (a lot)….I like the giggles the best.

We talk…..sometimes about things that make sense and sometimes it’ nonsensical 3 year old boy language…..but we talk.

We share…..yes, we parents were kiddos once too, and they LOVE to know about the “old days”, you know, the 90’s.

We get to know each other….away from any sibling competition, away from chores and adult responsibilities, away from stress.

We make memories….big and small.

And you know what I love most about dating my kids? The goodnight hug that I get at the end of a date-day is always extra tight. It lasts a little longer than the hug at the end of a routine day. It says, THANK YOU. It tells me how much they appreciate the time with JUST mom, or JUST dad. Without saying a word, I know that today, was special. And tomorrow may go right back to the everyday, but when your 3 year old brings up your simple chocolate milk and donut date….nearly 6 months after the fact, you realize just how impactful those few hours together, one on one, are.

It doesn’t have to be extravagant, it doesn’t have to break the bank. I just has to be YOU and THEM.

A wise mama recently told me: “Life Happens.” Yep, it sure does… and furious sometimes. But the days I go on dates with my kids, time seems to slow down just a little. Just enough to actually capture the moments, feel all the feels, and warm my mama-soul. And that, my friends, is worth all the chocolate milk and sprinkled donuts in the world.

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Jessie is the proud mama of two little loves, Reese (born 2009) and Brooks (born 2011). She is fortunate enough to share her life’s adventures with her husband (and high school sweetheart) Todd to whom she has been married since 2004. Although she and her husband have lived all over the West Coast, Arizona is home and she can’t imagine leaving the warm Arizona sunshine anytime soon! A proud University of Arizona Alumni, Jessie spent her pre-kiddo years as a corporate recruiter and trainer. When she is not taking her kiddos to the park or exploring the many cool things the Valley has for families, Jessie is running her natural baby food business, At First Bite, and blogging about the many adventures of parenthood on her blog, At First Bite – Peas. Love. Yumminess.



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