I can’t tell you how many days we have been home together. I can remember the day things started to change because I had a children’s “Secret Missions” event scheduled on the Sunday evening when everyone started asking questions about whether or not people should meet in groups. I adapted the event, called off the restaurant portion of the event, and made sure unsuspecting families were okay with us leaving gifts at their homes. That was March 15, 2020.
A “Family Night” event could be the thing that influences the spiritual health of your child’s future family as your child hopefully continues the tradition.
One of the biggest, surprises for moms and dads was the “welcome to homeschooling” experiences which few families would have chosen on their own. Families were forced home 24/7 with mom and dad assuming the roles of teacher/principal or principal/teacher. As many have been in this mode for well over a month, we don’t want you to miss the moment. Don’t allow the daily rut cheat you of some memory-making experiences with your children. If you have ever desired to establish a “Family Night” routine, now is the time to step up your game plan. Even though you are home with your family every night, try to dedicate a night as “Family Night” and establish a weekly routine that will outlive the COVID-19 crisis. A “Family Night” might help you break the monotony and rejuvenate both you and your family.
Your “Family Night” does not always have to be the same. You can put each family member in charge of a different week. If the preschooler wants to do something “preschool-like” the high school senior will have to engage. Family members will need to be sensitive to each other’s desires, and your family will need to put their own personal preferences aside until their assigned week to plan the event. In addition to the fun component, always add a prayer time with your family. Get to the heart of your kids during these weekly events. Set the example of praying together with your family and making your “Family Night” a priority. A “Family Night” event could be the thing that influences the spiritual health of your child’s future family as your child hopefully continues the tradition.
- International nights – Study a country, eat their food, watch videos from that country, pray for people in that country to know Christ.
- Camping night – Pitch a tent in the backyard or in the comfort of your living room. Stay up late and sleep in.
- Game night – Bring out all the favorite games.
- Family recipe night – Get everyone a recipe box. Each family member starts their own box of recipes as your family cooks and cleans together on recipe night.
- Hide and seek – Stay inside or out, but create clear boundaries for where you can and can’t hide.
- Nerf gun wars – This one never gets old no matter your age. Use pots and pans and place them as targets around the house. Award points for different sized pans.
- Hikes, bikes, and trails – Breath the fresh air of the great outdoors.
- Family painting night – Consider a big family project with Pinterest ideas and paints.
- Surprise rides – Ask each person to put the name of a treat place in a jar. The driver blindfolds all participants and drives the car to one of the chosen destinations for a treat.
- 50 questions – You each write down questions and put them in a jar. Everyone must answer all the questions that have been put in the jar.
- Film a movie night – Don’t let that iPhone go to waste. Get the kids to come up with a story line. Act out your movie and share it with friends and family.
Axis.org provides a resource for families to use to implement family nights. Included are ideas on what to do if things are not going well and resources you can use to make your family nights better. Also included are some discussion questions to ask to see how open your family is to making “Family Nights” a regular part of your family’s calendar.