Back to school. Back to meticulously scheduled days, meals on the go and wondering when the next break is. It is so easy to dive back into the swing of things of homework, sports and after school activities that, as parents, we can let the most important thing fall by the wayside: making time for family.
Spending time together as a family is easy when everyone is home for the summer and there is time for family vacations or dinners out, but as our school year starts and each child’s schedule is jam-packed with various different activities, we have to get more creative with positive ways to show our kids that they are important… and making time for family is important!
Here are a few things you can do each day or week to keep your family in mind, even with busy schedules.
Family Dinners Each Day
We all have to eat, right? Whether it is a gourmet, home cooked meal, take out or Chick-Fil-A, gathering around a table as a family and showing interest in each other’s day to day lives enriches relationships and opens the dialogue between spouses and children and their parents. I know some of the best laughs my family has had were around our dinner table and have turned into some of my greatest childhood memories.
Okay, okay. I know it’s not ideal for most families to get their kids to willingly participate in a chore day, but it’s hard work on parents to maintain schedules, down time AND a clean home. On a Saturday morning, turn up the music and have each family member finish a task. No, it might not be done perfectly but it is important to show our kids what all goes into maintaining a household. Maybe even reward the whole family afterwards with a nice lunch at the park or at your favorite, local restaurant.
It is easy to make time to put our younger kids to bed and read them a book but it’s important to squeeze in a little extra time with our older kids or even teens, individually. Popping in as everyone is getting into bed to focus on individual needs of our children can show them that we care and they are important.
Volunteer at Church or School
Pouring ourselves back into the community around us is important so that we can give back to the people or organizations that need the help. It is also a good way for us to spend time with our children doing something positive and uplifting.
To find ways to volunteer in our community you can visit: http://northstarchurch.org/calendar/category/community-events-calendar/ or https://www.volunteermatch.org/search/index.jsp?l=30144&k=
No matter what the activity is, staying connected and making time for family each day helps us build relationships and bonds that grow to be unbreakable. Despite the jam-packed schedules that come with getting back to school, we can still take small steps each day to making sure our kids and spouses know their importance. Whether it is a family dinner together or volunteer Saturday, the memories created can last a lifetime.