When you have a family, even family outings or times together can be stressful. Here are just a few simple tips, to help keep the stress down for you and your kids on or during family fun times!
No Back to Back - As a busy family, schedules can make outings and time together extremely difficult. In order to make up for that, we have a tendency to plan quite a few activities one right after the other on the same day. Try not to do that. When you are enjoying one thing, you will be thinking about the next thing (and your kids will be too) which will take a lot of the fun out of the time you are spending together in the first place! So, plan one fun thing to do and just enjoy it. Sometimes something simple can be one of the best choices you can make.
Seem Spontaneous - As parents, we have to schedule special fun activities or let's face it, we won't ever get to them at times. When we make those plans, we love to tell our kids about a special surprise coming up, but, then they can anticipate, build it up and have more stress than they need to especially when you mean for it to be fun anyway! So don't! Make whatever you are doing seem spontaneous. If they love the activity itself anyway, it won't matter if they know you planned it two months in advance, or if they get up, get dressed and then are told, "hey we are going to the park today"! Sometimes we use activities or special things as something to try to entice our children to behave as well, which can cause all sorts of family drama in the long run. I have made that mistake too many times to count! Keep things as drama free as you can!
Live in the Moment - Above all, when you are enjoying a family activity, really be in that moment. Put aside your phone or work plans for the next day, and stop worrying about stuff that needs to be done later. Don't even start planning what you will do that evening when the kids are in bed--just take a deep breath and enjoy the moment. As your kids get older and have their own families, planning family gatherings will even be more difficult than they are when they are home and you need to savor every moment you have together. Each stage you have with your family is important and valuable. Don't let one slide by...!