Alongi Law Firm, PLLC

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Tips for fathers living far away to remain close to their kids

Are you an Arizona dad who is struggling to parent from a distance? It's important to remain connected to your children no matter how much space is between you. Below are some tips for ways to stay engaged across the miles.

  • Get a silkscreen portrait of yourself done on a pillowcase. Dab it with a drop or two of your signature cologne and send it to your son or daughter to put on their pillow at home.
  • Record yourself reading different bedtime stories to the kids, then send them the recordings and books to listen to before drifting off.
  • If your child has a special sporting or other event coming up, order deliveries of pizza or flowers to show you remembered.
  • Send a sick child a care package of comfort foods, soft pajamas or nighties, plush stuffed animals, blankets and paperbacks or comic books.
  • Name a star after your son or daughter. Call (800) 282-3333 to arrange.
  • Plan an activity the two of you can do over the phone, e.g., watching a movie or the big game on TV, fishing or even a shopping trip in the mall.
  • Mail the kids postcards and letters regularly. Tuck small surprises in the envelopes -- dried wildflowers that you picked, coupons for a fast food treat, a couple dollar bills, etc.
  • Take a virtual field trip together over the internet using Skype or Facetime.
  • Begin a journal and describe your daily activities to the kids. Sprinkle in some life lessons and observations.

Feel free to add your own touch of whimsy to the list. It's less important what you do or send than that you are making a regular effort to remain connected and engaged in your kids' lives.

If your child's other parent creates obstacles to your maintaining close ties with him or her, you might need to take legal action through the Maricopa County family courts.

Source: Dads at a Distance, "20 Long Distance Activities for Dads at a Distance," accessed Sep. 29, 2017

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