8 Ways to Sneak in Family Time

Finding quality family time can be a monumental task. Schedules have to be color coded, and time seems to slip by everyday. Looking for those little moments of the day where you can connect as a family is possible, but you might need to look in some unlikely places. 

1. Play games in the car. Whether you are going down the street or on a long road trip, play games instead of popping in a DVD.
2. Change up game night. Have each member of the family take turns choosing a game, making up a game, or going to a game. I can't wait to take the boys to their first basketball and baseball games.
3. Try dinner without the TV. If you only have time for a family dinner, then that counts as family time. 
4. Give Back. Volunteer as a family in your community. You will be teaching your children the importance of giving back while spending time together. 
5. Bedtime Routine. Develop a bedtime routine that is not rushed. Use that time for the kiddos to talk about their day while washing their faces. Play during bath time. Rotate who picks the book or song before bed. Making bed time as less stressful as possible is good for you and the children.
6. Play time. Being an adult comes with so many responsibilities. Give yourself permission to be a kid for a little while. When my husband comes home from work he likes to say his hellos, we talk for about 20 minutes, and then he will usually wrestle with the boys before dinner. It doesn't seem like much, but the boys love that time with their father. 
7. Cook dinner together. Have everyone make his own pizza, or have the kiddos decide what's for dinner one night a week. That child has to help cook for the family. It will give them a sense of pride and accomplishment. As a child we were required to set the table and put ice in the glasses while my Mom cooked. It was a way for us to talk to her while both of us accomplished a task Mom needed help with. 
8. Family walk or hikes. This was one of my favorites as a teenager. After dinner we would walk around the neighborhood for an evening stroll. We would talk about our day and different life events that were on the calendar. It was a way to stay connected. 

I must confess this is still an area we are working on as a family, and we look for quality time when time is at a premium. What would you add to this list? Please share your ideas and what works well for your family. We can all use a little more family time.


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