As my girls get older and I see the days of their departure and starting their own families approaching in the distance, I am more mindful of how we spend our time together. When they were all little, I just wanted to make it through the day without having to pull out the carpet cleaner and actually having had a shower that day before dinner!
As they aged into children who could entertain themselves and even clean up after themselves (see above), I relished the time to actually do something other than get in the shower. Sadly, I developed the bad habit of being side by side doing our own thing. This year I really want to spend our vacation time doing things with the girls. Things I normally say, "Well, maybe tomorrow." or "Too messy!"
I had the inspired idea, that on the last day of school, we would make a list of things we all want to do together. We actually started talking about it Wednesday so we could be thinking of things. We didn't list activities such as watch movies or play computer because we already do so much of that. We have been thinking about things we don't normally do that would be fun and mostly free!
As Hannah was decorating the list for us, I realized how much this idea means to the girls. Hannah said, "Mom, this will be so much fun doing things with you every day. I am really looking forward to it." This from a girl who spends nearly every day here at the house with me and most of the hours actually in my presence. How could this seem to be so special to her? Because I am choosing to spend my free time doing things with her, not just beside her! So even though it seems that it would just be enough to let the kids do their own thing for the next few weeks, they really want to do things with us instead.
What a blessing! This is certainly not typical for kids today or at least that is the way the family is portrayed in most movies and sitcoms. Is it really just that our kids are strange? Or is it that our kids have been raised to know that God put them in our family for a reason? We believe that God wants families to be happy and to spend time together learning, growing, and having fun, not rolling their eyes and whining about having to be together. We are also planning to do things that will be a blessing to others during this time off. Families can serve together too!
So how does your family spend time off? Do you have suggestions for activities for us? I plan to post pictures of the daily activity. It will be fun to have a record for reminiscing!
Day 1 Tonight we are off to see the Christmas parade with friends! :)
Coming up in the near future: Baking sugar cookies, Mock snowball fight with socks behind our "snow forts", partner scrabble, and making Christmas cards to give out with cookies to the neighbors.
With All My Heart~