In our go-go-go way of life it can become difficult to slow down, unplug and enjoy one another. Family game night, movie night, or other forms of planned, scheduled time together are all great ways to reconnect. However, there are millions of smaller, unstructured, impromptu moments in the life of a family that provide amazing opportunities to discover and enjoy one another.
1. Windshield time – An article from 2013 in the UK publication The Telegraph claimed that mothers in the UK drive 1,248 miles annually carting children around. That’s a lot of time spent in a car and a lot of opportunities to engage our kids in conversation. Click here to get some ideas for fun conversation starters. Or, for even more fun, click here for kid jokes and riddles.
2. Meal time – There is no doubt it is a challenge to get everyone around the table at the same time. Instead of juggling schedules, try doing “meal time” on YOUR time. Once a week sit down with one or all of your kids and have them plan a meal: menu, shopping, the works. Then plan a day, on your time, when you and your child(ren) will prepare the meal together. For some great ideas, visit Food Network’s Cooking With Kids page here.
3. Shoulder time – Sometimes kids find it easier to talk to parents (or other adults) when they don’t have to make eye contact…especially if it is something that is difficult for them to talk about. Take a walk with your child, play a video game, or do a craft project together. While you’re shoulder-to-shoulder, ask them about their day, use the conversation starters above or, if there’s something you’re concerned about, bring up the subject gently and non-confrontationally.
For some tips on talking with your kids, visit our previous post on communication.
No parent should move without a written game plan to help your children deal with the difficulties they face when moving.
For more information about the Moving Families Initative, please visit www.movingfamiliesinitiative.com.