- It had to be enjoyable, if not fun for all.
- It didn’t need to cost a lot of money, though sometimes there can be special occasions where this will happen.
- Dad does not have to plan each family night. Everyone in the family was given one week a month to plan that week’s regularly scheduled night. If you have a little one in the family, ask him/her what they wanted to do for family night and they will tell you. One of our daughters always chose to dress up as princesses and another wanted to color.
- Technology was avoided for most family nights.
- Mom and Dad’s approval was required.
“Building Family Identity” on MP3 or download the PDF. We both (Joey & Carla) share lots of great examples of family nights with things to avoid and things to do.
- Riding bikes after dinner and Dad surprises all with a stop for ice cream
- Indoor scavenger hunts during winter months
- Card games
- Making up a story with all family members having a part about their favorite superhero – siblings would barter to get to be one of the heroes instead of one of the villains
- A puppet or stage show all participate in
- Going to look at Christmas lights then to a special restaurant and have dessert for dinner
- Play charades but use Bible characters. Have the “actor” person tell what they remember about that person in the Bible.
- Put on a family talent show. Let your kids be creative and you too!
- Have a family sing along. Start with silly songs then move to praise songs. Have the older kids write down the songs they like to sing on paper first and see which songs are commonly liked. They have to sing part of the song to make it count.
- Read a book together like Little Pilgrim’s Progress or about great Christian men & women of the faith in a version kids would be interested in. The Trailblazer series by Dave and Neta Jackson put an 8-12 yr. old in the life of a great missionary (available on amazon). Have them tell what they learned in the story.
- Play favorite board or card games (our family has 3-4 they want to play every time we get together).
- Look at old family pictures, albums or videos. While you may be storing your kids pictures on your computer, how often do your kids get to see them? Older kids will have fun remembering what they looked like when they were younger and seeing how they have changed. Have each person point out in a positive way how someone has matured for the good of all.
- Go to a Dollar store or mall (when they open again) and give each person $2-$5. Then have them pull a name from a hat and see how they can use that money to buy something that would be special or meaningful for that family member. Remind everyone of 1 Thessalonians 5:11 and ask them how they practice this verse.
It takes work to have a family that enjoys spending time together. If it is your desire to have kids who want to come home for Christmas, who want you to be involved in their lives once they are married, then you need to build memories and family time memories now that will carry over to wanting to recapture those memories when they are adults.