In the crazy busy life we live here is the USA it is always more, more, more! Starting at a very young age it seems like it is expected for your kids to be involved in something- music, dance, sports, art... something. Add school and church and you have a busy schedule. Not to mention all the stuff that parents do.
We were noticing that we were missing out on our kids. I am a stay-at-home mom but between school and extra activities I was seeing my kids less and less. So me and the hubs sat down and got intentional about our family time. It didn't mean we had to get rid of the extra activities that kids were doing (They loved them!) but it did mean making time to spend as a family a priority.
It wasn't as hard as it seemed and I am here to share some of the things we do that work for our family that gets us to spend quality time together and bond as a family!
The first thing you need to do is decide you are going to spend time with just your family.
Then decide what that will look like for your family.
Here are some ways we spend time as a family:
Weekly Family Night
we designate 1 night a week for family time. It starts with Pizza dinner and then one of the kids get to choose the nights activities. We have played hide-and-seek, had a dance party, made Logo creations, had campfires, made forts, played board games and many more things. The kids LOVE it and look forward to it each week.
Eat Meals Together and Talk with Each Other.
With so many different schedules it is easy to just feed the kids and eat as a adults later. I get and have done it myself, but once we made eating meals together as a family a priority it made a difference. At the dinner table I always make my kids tell me 3 things about their day, and then they get to pick their favorite thing. We find out fascinating things about our kids this way. Like the week my 4-year-old daughter only told me things about a little boy named Ryker at her pre-school. Isn't 4 years old too young to have a crush?!
Do Service Projects Together
Our Church has several different service project for us to get involved in. And at first it always seems like it would be too much to bring the kids along, but when we do we always have a great time and the kids come away with so much! One of our favorite service projects is the "Backpacking Party" we have at our church. In a nearby school they have a high % of homeless families that attend, so we collect non-parisable food and put it into backpacks to send home with the kids on the weekends so that they have have some food at home too. We have different tables set up with different kids of foods (fruit snacks, breakfast foods, soups etc) and we walk around and put in a couple things from each table. My kids love to collect the food at the tables and put it in the bag and I get to teach them about giving to the poor. There are many ways to serve as a family either through your church, school or community. Feed My Starving Children is also a great place to help out at.
Special Family Outings/Adventures
Going to the Zoo, Children's Museum, and Fair are great Family time! We try to play a bigger special family event at least once a quarter. We have a free zoo not to far away that we like to go to, and we have spent the day at the Mall of America, or gone to the special Butterfly Exhibit at the U of M's Arboretum. A fun day out of the ordinary spent as a family
Family Movie Night
Our Family LOVES movies. We make a big deal about movie nights. There is nothing better then the 5 of us cuddled on the couch as we watch a movie! We have Netflix and we love that we have tons of family friendly titles to choose from. Our favorite is when we can choose a movie that we loved as kids. We have watched Sword in the Stone, Flubber, Robin Hood, and Mulin together recently. Our family movie nights are most successful when we have lots of popcorn!
How do you spend time as a family?