Every year in the summer Mr. O goes away for a week to his summer camp for high school runners.  Now that Miss O is older, I try to use the week for some serious quality time with her before the craziness of the school year begins.  We go to dinner, maybe the movies, and a local fair always closes the week out.

This year I’m starting a new tradition; a mother-daughter sleepover!

In the rush of every day, quality time can be hard to come by. This year I started a new tradition for some extra bonding time; a mother-daughter sleepover.

It works basically like a regular sleepover, but at home with just mommy and daughter.

Kick-off.  When you’re staying at home, you run the risk of your special time turning into just another boring night.  To avoid this, do something to signal the start of official sleepover time.  You can set a timer, take a walk, or just have a moment of celebration.

Have a few surprises.  As hard as it was, I found a great kid’s movie that Miss O hadn’t seen yet.  We turned out all the lights and got a big bowl of popcorn and watched it together.  I also had some fun decorating the bedroom…

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Using a Command Strip, some sheets I picked up at Goodwill to make a sheet fort a few years ago, and an LED light set, I made an adorable canopy that also served as a night light.

Let go of some rules.  Eat dinner in front of the tv.  Jump on the bed.  Stay up late.  Think of all the fun and silliness of a regular sleepover and just go for it.  You may have to explain that it’s just for one night, but it’s worth it.

Go traditional.  What are some of the things you loved to do at sleepovers when you were a kid?  My friends and I used to do manicures and, when we were older, dye our hair.  We used to play dress up and make up silly skits… it was fun and free.  Don’t try too hard.

Turn the tech off.  Don’t worry about capturing every moment on film.  Capture it in your heart.  Be present.  No Facebook or Twitter.  Pinterest will be there in the morning.

Go to bed together.  Originally I had thought I would lay with Miss O until she fell asleep, but that girl has staying power.  Besides that, it was nice to have a night off from being a grown up after she goes to bed.  And DANG, I was tired!

In the rush of every day, quality time can be hard to come by. This year I started a new tradition for some extra bonding time; a mother-daughter sleepover.