Rewind to about 6 years ago. I was a few weeks shy of my due date with my first born son. The anticipation was mounting, my to-do list was getting smaller (probably the last time that happened), and my husband and I were nothing but excited (okay, well, maybe I was a little anxious about my "plans" to birth naturally).
If you would have asked me then, what kind of mom I was going to be, I guarantee I would have said I was going to be the mom who never yelled, who never spanked out of anger or frustration, who would always put my child's needs ahead of my own, and would love every moment of every day at home with my kids (its okay to roll your eyes).
And then, I became a mom.
Family Fun Nights have become a staple in our family's weekly routine. Our kids look forward to it as the busy week comes to a close. Not only are we spending intentional quality time together while our our children are young, but ultimately, we are hoping to instill a love for coming together around the table as they grow up.
I am a firm believer in starting kids off young with structured games and activities. They are capable of so much more than we give them credit for. Our first son, at 2 years old, could legitimately beat us at a game of Toy Story Memory (or Toy Story Matching as he called it), however, it wasn't until our second son was 3 years old that he became interested in structured games (despite being the very reason we started Family Fun Night's to begin with). Every child's interest level for these types of activities will be different, and I'm not suggesting to force something on them that they aren't ready for or enjoy, but I would encourage you to periodically revisit certain activities that your child may not show interest in initially.
I can't take credit for bringing all these awesome games into our home, as many of these were gifts from our thoughtful family members, but we have made them our own and they have all become our absolute favorites. We don't always play by the rules. We don't always finish each round. But we are smiling, laughing, high fiving, and bonding with each game we play.
**This list is compiled with children ages 5 and under in mind. It also contains affiliate links.
Raise your hand if you love Fridays!!!
I'm guessing most of you moms are raising both hands, if you're anything like me.
Early on in motherhood, Fridays became just like every other day of the week.
I still had to do all the same things that I did every other day, and no break was in sight.
But this Momma needed a break! I needed something to look forward to!
So, Friday's became our family night OUT!
My husband and I, and our little guy would head out to a family friendly restaurant...no planning, no cooking, no cleaning...perfect!
We actually really enjoyed these nights out as a family of 3.
People would come up to us and comment on how great it was that we were exposing our young toddler to public places.
We kindly nodded in agreement, but really, we were thinking, "yeah, we're doing this for more for us...he's just along for the ride."
Then, enter child #2....we were determined to keep our tradition going.
So, for several months, we powered through...
through the crying,
through the bouncing,
through the rocking, the shushing, the nursing in the booth,
through the glares we got from others trying to enjoy a meal in peace.
No one was coming up to praise us now...
Finally, we'd had enough. This was not fun anymore.
Something had to change...but I still really wanted to look forward to Fridays and all that it represented.
SO, enter Family Fun Nights.
STRESS FREE FAMILY FUN that happens in our home every week.
No worrying about meltdowns, bedtimes, running out of snacks for the little ones, or ruining anyone else's evening meal.
Just family time!
Now that our kiddos are older, they are just as excited as we are that it's Friday!
Most Friday mornings, we are greeted with their cheers of, "Yay! It's family fun night tonight!!"
It makes my heart overflow with gratitude that we have these moments together as a family, and as our kids grow, our activities will look a little different...but the purpose will be the same!
We are together!
(note: affiliate links included in this post.)
Welcome to Dwelling Well Mom! I'm so glad you are here! I'm Christi, wife, mom of boys, Christ follower, picture taker, DIYer, chocolate eater, and coffee drinker. Born and raised a Florida girl, now braving the mountains of Boone, NC, I'm on a journey to find peace in the midst of my mundane. Join me!