Spending alone time with your children
A common complaint against larger families is that the parents are not able to have one on one time with their children, therefore they simply can't bond as well. While admittedly it is harder to find the time to spend with each child alone, we don't find it impossible.
Looking at pictures on Papa's iPod together
There are many different ways you can spend time with your children. Just taking a child alone with you to the grocery store can be special for them, especially if they get a little treat at the store! I avoid the toy aisle with all five children, but if I have just one child with me we sometimes go and look at the toys together. :)
I run to the post office several times a week bringing packages to mail for The Modest Mom. Normally I have a child that asks to go with me, and even though the post office is just minutes away we still chat on the way there and back.
As the weather has just turned lovely here in Missouri, I have started going outside to walk and attempt to jog in the mornings. My oldest son who is 8 goes with me, and I listen to him talk to me about all sorts of things. I try to answer in-between huffing and puffing. I think the bonding time of doing something fun together is especially important for the oldest child of a large family, as they naturally have a bit more on their shoulders until the younger children are older.
I am able to fit in time alone with my children more easily as my husband is self employed. He is home more than other daddies might be. If you feel like there is no time available to spend alone with your children, don't stress about it! Just look for opportunities throughout the day, no matter how small. When my boys were playing outside the other day, I pulled out a little tea set my girl's have and filled the tea pot full of orange juice, put a cookie on their little plates and let them have fun pouring their own juice. They made a mess, but it was a nice time for just the girls.
With my three girls at church when Deborah received her baby blessing
Another idea is to play outside with your children. I'm not the best at this, normally I send the children out to play so I can get some work done inside. The other day my husband was extremely busy with a college test, business, and church work. My son really wanted to play kickball, so I went outside and played with him and ended up having so much fun!
The point is to do something, anything to help your children feel special and unique. They will forever remember those moments when you put everything aside just to spend time with them.