There have been a few nights lately when either E or I have been working and driving home later in the evening, after work and possibly errands, affecting the amount of quality time we have with Miss P. One solution we have: the phone date! All of us are big talkers (I actually kind of dislike the phone - I'm more about in person only - but I'll do it for P!) Anyway, both E and I have about a 30 minute drive home when it's prime traffic. We call home to check in and then ask for P. We chat about our day (tip: tell some tidbits about your day first, seems less like an interrogation then), tell jokes and play games. P likes to play The Synonym Game (what's a synonym for tired? pretty?), or Guess What's in My Purse or Guess the mystery item in my room. It's a nice way to feel like you are getting some time in, if you've been stretched. What would your child like to talk about? Who can name the most dinosaurs? Guess what's for dinner? Name that American Girl doll?
OK, Oprah/safety comment. Obviously, your first priority is driving. I'm not suggesting (nor do I) flying down the freeway and digging through your purse. I'm talking stop and go traffic with eyes on the road and hands on the wheel. Hopefully you are using your hands free devices or have the phone built into the car like E does!
I'm thinking this might be really helpful for dads as well as working moms. Also can help siblings feel like they are each getting some special attention. Finally, this might give the home parent an opportunity to get dinner on the table! Let me know if you try it!