Sometimes the world gets busy. And sometimes, our lives get busy to the point where it feels like we have no return to sanity. Taking time out from our fun activities can feel daunting at times. I mean, how do you take time out from the things we consider to be fun already? Is that really taking a time out? We give ourselves excuses that the kids need to be busy. They need to have activities to keep active. Because, if they don’t, then they will only sit and watch TV, play video games, and be lazy, right? Wrong. Everything our kids do is based on a decision we make. And that statement may ruffle some feathers but please hear me out.
When our kids are really young, we have the ability to give the kids a non-electronic toy or give them an electronic one. I am not saying to take the electronic one out of their lives. Heavens, I know I didn’t do that. TV was a huge staple in our lives when my kids were growing up, and it still is today. But I understood the value of taking that away at times so they could use their imaginations, play outside and use their muscles and get tired. There is also a huge value in letting our kids be bored. I have said this before but there are so many studies that say that creativity and good brain function are fueled by the times we allow our brains to rest. I mean, why do you think meditation is such a big deal. That’s because it works. Back to what I was saying.
Everything our kids do is based on a decision we make. As they get older, it does get more challenging to force things upon our kids. Let’s be honest. As small children, I could lock them outside (and I did that a lot) so I could keep the house clean and they could get some energy out. They were forced to play with each other or their bikes or their outside toys. I mean, it worked sometimes! But today, as they grow and become teenagers, it is harder to lock them outside. But as adults, and their parents, we have all the power in terms of what they do with us. That is no different than the little kids. “Let’s go to the park” or “Grab your bike and we will take a ride together”. And if I am being honest, my kids CRAVE that time with me. They crave that time to spend alone with me doing whatever it is they want to do. But I have some say. This is no different when it comes to family activities. But we have to be intentional about it. We have to schedule it in our lives or it won’t happen. The busier you are as a family, the more this becomes an important task. But going to dance class is not the same as visiting the pumpkin patch or taking a hike together. Doing these family activities shouldn’t be a chore, but they should be something we enjoy and look forward to. Spending time with the family during the “breaks” should be the icing on the cake. Let’s schedule more of that in our lives- not less.
While we’re at it, let’s talk about getting the kids to remember that activity forever. Whether you went sledding or you spent your day going to the park for a picnic, you can rest assured that your kids will want to remember that time. Kids thrive on memories. When I mention anything about my kids’ childhoods to them, they geek out on the details. Imagine what it would be like if I had pictures to show for everything they did. When you do that, it’s like handing them a memory. Handing them a part of their childhood. Let’s schedule your family time in pictures today so they can remember it forever, in print.