I'm on the road with my two daughters (his and mine) for a few days of shopping until we drop. Twelve years ago - Little Hart was two and Elle was 5. Neither one was very happy about it. Nor was Jax very happy about Elle and vice versus.
The first time we decided to get Elle and Jax together for a play date it was a disaster! Elle asked to used the bathroom and Jax immediately ran into the bathroom, locked the door,refusing to come out! No accidents - there was another bathroom upstairs. Jax didn't come out of the bathroom until we were safely in the car and on our way home.
Of course we didn't leave it that way. The following week, Elle and I showed up with her Barbie Jeep. She was driving it around their driveway and Jax decided that seemed like a good time. He asked Elle for a ride and eventually, Jax was in the driver's seat - Elle in the passenger seat. I'll never forget Jax with one arm around Elle and the other on the steering wheel driving Elle around the circle! Sooo cute!
Elle and Little Hart had their battles. One day Little Hart was slowly coming down the steps, resting on the stair landing halfway between the upstairs and downstairs. Elle came rushing by Little Hart to get downstairs. Little Hart fell back on the stair landing. No injuries, but it was clear that Elle wasn't concerned about this new addition to her life.
So here we are twelve years later and my three younger kids are closer than most natural siblings. And no it didn't just happen all on it's own! And, No it didn't happen with us completely navigating the situation! We looked for opportunities big and small to bring the kids together in ways they could enjoy spending time together.
This week is a prime example of a situation that Raylan and I created to foster a relationship between the girls. We are doing something fun that both girls love (and Mom loves) to do and and are enjoying doing it together. Last night we arrived around 5 and decided to hit the shops. It touched my heart when the girls were walking a head of me a few steps arm and arm. Or laughing hysterically with each other while looking for jewelry. Or painting their nails and laughing at a rerun of friends.
Lucky Mom spending the next few days with these amazing daughters. Smiles all around.
What things big and small have you done in your blended family for sibling bonding of hers and his kids? Love to hear!