Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Implementing a Family Night

Life can get so busy so easily, can't it? We are constantly filling up our schedules with commitments and activities. For our family, it was getting to be hard to find focused time together. There were weeks where we would have life group Monday, my husband would have a pastor's meeting Tuesday, we would have dinner with friends Wednesday, Thursday was gymnastics, and Friday, Saturday and Sunday were filled with church events. I started to really notice how this was affecting our kiddos-particularly the oldest. Even though she would see daddy during several of those things (life group, dinner with friends and gymnastics together), it wasn't focused time.

 We were together physically, but not building into each other, talking, playing, etc. 
I know that I don't thrive in having a schedule like that. I love routine and I love having a schedule, but when it gets to be so constantly booked, I get drained. I'm an introvert and my love language is quality time, what can I say?! I was noticing this in my daughter as well. This certainly wasn't every week for us...we had other weeks where we only had gymnastics the whole week and the rest of the week was open in the evenings. It was hard to balance though because some weeks were busy, some weeks weren't. That's just the way things go, I suppose.

 My husband and I talked about it after having several of those busy weeks in a row and decided we needed to implement a family night. A night where we are spending quality time together, just the 4 of us. You guys, it has been SO good! We have been more intentional about actually doing things with the kids, instead of just hanging out around the house. We've been doing activities, or taking them somewhere fun. Not just going out to eat and playing at the play place, but going to the children's museum, or the splash pad. My girls love their daddy (they love me, too, but they are with me all day), so they are really loving this focused time together with him. It has been so fun to just put the rest of the world aside for a night every week, and focus on being together. Sure, we have lots of other nights together as well, but this is our one JUST US night. No other commitments, no errands, just us doing something fun. 

We set a few "guidelines" for our family nights so that we were on the same page about what we were expecting. 
1: Just the four of us. It was really easy for us to have several nights a week where we were going out to eat with family, going to a birthday party, etc. but we weren't really spending time together then because we were focused on the other people we were with.

2: Be intentional. We are trying to be careful not to just hang out around the house and do nothing and call it family night. Not to say that we have to leave the house, but it's easy to fall into the trap of having dinner together, then all going our separate ways in the house because we have things to do. Maybe we will decide to have a movie night, but we are being intentional about all spending the time enjoying it together. 
It has been so refreshing to know that we have this one night a week where we say no to other invitations, and just spend time loving on our kiddos and building into them! I really want my kids to grow up and remember that mom and dad spent time with them, played with them, engaged them, and that we did it together.
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  1. Jakes family still does a family night every Sunday night and is so great! Especially now that everyone is living separately!

    1. That's awesome! I hope we can make it a forever thing :)


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