Does your family fun revolve around the very busy work, school and social schedule? Does our fast paced lives prevent families from creating spontaneous family fun?
IKEA's Time To Live research states,‘We can get so caught up with the demands of work and life that we often feel we are not doing enough together and that we have to do something special with our children to make them notice it,’ says Helene Fernström. ‘Research has shown that we often don’t count the time in the car or at the kitchen counter. But moments like these are just as valuable – kids just want to hang out with us.
It's true kids do just want to hang out with us. But how can busy parents and time swallowing schedules allow for spontaneous family fun?
- Decide one evening that the chores are a bore and use that time to play, create, cook or just watch a movie together.
- Make the whole house a family room. Time to make dinner? Get everyone involved from cutting vegetables to tossing the salad, or marinating the meat.
- Offer craft, toy and game centers in several rooms so when a moment does get free it's right there and you aren't wasting the time looking for something to do.
- Stop up on snacks and easy to prepare meals. Save time by using your slow cooker or make an easy meal. Have on hand a selection of snacks for when you are ready to have some fun like family game or movie night.
- Power down. Turn off the cell phones and iPads (unless you need them for your fun) and really get engaged with your kids. It's okay to act silly and it's even more okay to make your kids learn to laugh at themselves.
Spur of the moment family fun ideas - these don't have to be complicated.
- It's an oldie but a goodie - build a fort.
- Take a walk.
- Have a nature scavenger hunt.
- Poise for the photo - everyone grab a camera or cell phone with a camera and start taking pictures. Add fun stickers and see what you come up with.
- Bake a cake - or cookies or cupcakes or even a loaf of bread for breakfast the next morning.
- Dress up in costumes or have a fashion show with clothing from the closets.
- Create a time to play jar. Place ideas in the jar and pull them out when you need something fun to do. Consider it your family fun bucket list.
- Look in a book! It's library time, have each person in the family share in reading a book or talk about one of the books they are currently reading.
- Bed time is a great time for spontaneous family fun. Snuggle up, read a good book or do a spur of the moment road trip in your PJ's one weekend night. Who want's donuts tonight?
It doesn't have to take a lot of time, but even just a few minutes spent with the family can create a long time of lasting memories as well as important parenting lessons.