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Welcome to Week 3 – Spending Time as a Family, Making Your Home a Haven 5th Annual, Fall Challenge ~ with WholeHearted Home joining in!!
When I was a little girl our way of spending time as a family was to either go swimming or go butterfly catching. All of us have gone swimming as a family but who has ever gone on an outing looking for butterflies?! We actually had a butterfly net for each of us and mounted the butterflies for display.
Once I had my own family we made some of new memories. I always liked the name of Gloria Gaither’s book, ‘Let’s Make A Memory‘ because that is what I hoped to be making with our children.
It isn’t easy. The work and even tension involved in raising a family is endless and it has to be an intentional thing to set aside time as a family. I hope my children will remember the fun more than the moments of stress because, let’s face it, that’s life and sometimes life is hard.
Here are some of the things we did to spend time with our children. What we did was usually simple but kids are amazing because they think even the little ideas are a ton-of-fun!!
Family Birthday Party
Keep it simple.
There were nine of us. That meant that someone had a birthday, seven months out of the year. One month was jammed packed with three birthday’s, so we were ‘partied’ out before the month was half done!
I usually tried to decorate.
I cooked a special meal. That’s not too hard when kids love hamburgers or hot dogs.
Then I would make a homemade cake and decorate it. I don’t decorate the best but spending time with your children isn’t about doing things perfectly. It is about spending time with them.
Taking Walks Along the River
Maybe you don’t have a river but have a lake, ocean, or park to explore.
We had a small river at the bottom of our road. For 21 years, I would take the children for a walk down along the river and let them explore, catch crayfish, throw rocks, or fall in. Those are special memories in my mind and hold a special place in my heart.
Do you spend time with your children outside?
Going on Family Camping Trips
We went on many family camping trips for many years. We camped in tents and later had a popup camper. Camping isn’t exactly easy but we would have it no other way. It was the one way we could afford to go on vacation with our children.
We have camped in New York State, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, Vermont, Cape Cod, Maine, Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, and maybe that is all.
We have been through caves, to the Atlantic Ocean, lakes, mountains, rivers, hiking through the woods, and countless other adventures while camping.
We took two canues and had a great time on the water.
Not every moment was perfect but doing special things with your children will give them memories to hang on to when adult life gets tough.
Reading Aloud as a Family
Another thing we did to spend time as a family was to read books aloud in the evening. We started doing this when our oldest son was 4 months old. Yes, that young!!
We would read fun books but we would also read more serious books as they got a little older about missionaries or famous people in history. Sometimes we read about people you would not always hear about in a normal history book.
There isn’t any child who doesn’t like to snuggle up with their mom or dad and a book. At least when you get them used to it. If children spend too much time watching TV or videos, they will have an extremely short attention span with books until balance is found.
Spending time with your children doesn’t have to be something complicated. For me even the simple was often overwhelming on top of the piles of laundry it took to keep our family running smoothly.
Simple is best.
How do you spend time with your family? Remember, it doesn’t have to be complicated. Simple is just as fun!!