Wish you had more time to spend together as a family? This easy secret made a big difference for us and allows us to regularly spend quality time together as a family!
We were in for a big surprise soon after we got married 9 years ago. We thought that once we were married, we’d have all the time in the world to hang out and just be together…..or at least it would feel that way since we’d be with each other way more than when we were dating! And while there were occasional moments when that felt true, the reality was that most of the time we ended up feeling frustrated because it was just so hard to actually get quality time together!
Between our jobs, remodeling our fixer-upper home, housework, church functions, extended family activities, evenings out with friends, and just personal down time, before we knew it a week would fly by and we would end up feeling like we didn’t really have much time to truly connect.
After several months of feeling frustrated, we finally sat down to come up with a solution. We knew that unless we were intentional about solving this problem, it would only get worse as we started a family and had even more things demanding our time! And I have to say that the solution we came up with has been one of the best decisions that we’ve ever made for our family! And the great thing is, anyone can make it work for their life and their family!
A Simple Solution to Creating Family Time
What was our solution? We simply chose to set aside one evening a week and make it “our” night. At first we dubbed it “Date Night”, but after we started having children, it didn’t feel like much of a date anymore, so we changed the name to “Family Night” instead.
What exactly does Family Night look like?
Here are our two rules:
1. We plan our schedules around Family Night.
This simply means that Family Night is already “booked” on our calendar and so if someone wants to do something with us on a Tuesday evening, we’ll say no. Obviously, there have been occasional times were we’ve made exceptions and switched our Family Night to another evening. But as a general rule we are slow to do that because once we start changing it too much, it’s too easy to keep fudging and then soon we struggle to have a Family Night at all!
We’ve found that it works best for us to stick with having Family Night the same evening each week. It makes it easy to remember when it is and also helps us be more consistent with making it happen.
2. We are intentional about doing something meaningful together.
These evenings are all about spending quality time together, so electronic devices are set aside and we try to focus on just being with each other and doing things that build our family relationships or create memories.
Sometimes we go for a walk around the city. Other times we’ll play board games or something like “I Spy” together. On a warm evening we may enjoy a picnic at the park or take a hike together. Sometimes we’ll attend a baseball game or other event. And since watching movies is a rare thing around here and considered something special, occasionally we might even all snuggle together on the couch and have a family movie night*. Basically, as long as it’s something that we all enjoy and can do together, it’s an option!
*VidAngel is a great, inexpensive option for watching movies. Each movie is only $1 each plus you can set filters to remove content that you might find offensive like obscenities, violence etc. It’s perfect for everyone, but especially families with kiddos. Check it out!
Family Night has become an evening that we all look forward to each week! Our children especially have fun anticipating it and it has been an easy way for us to consistently have quality time together as a family, even during the very busy seasons of our life.
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