Thursday, February 28, 2013

The Importance of Family Time

Studies show that Americans in today’s world feel busier and as if they have less time in each day to do all the activities and tasks that they want or need to complete, not to mention spend time with the people that they care about and love. As such, finding the time to do family activities can be difficult. However, when a family does find this time, they may find themselves facing another problem – choosing an activity that the whole family will enjoy. While the activity that a family ultimately chooses will be largely based on the family’s demographics, the interests of each family member, and other factors, such as the weather, there are certain family activities that remain a favorite for most American families.

Staying in for a Relaxing Family Activity

While going out for a family evening activity can be a great deal of fun, the money spent on such activities can quickly add up. Additionally, sometimes it is simply more fun to use what is already available and stay at home with the whole family. For families looking to stay in, yet have fun together, the following family evening activities might be a top choice:
     · Family Movie Night – By turning a living room into a home movie theater, a family can easily recreate a movie theater experience, without spending a lot of money, and keep everyone entertained for a night. In order to take a home movie night to the next level, a family can come up with a theme for the night, such as western movies, spy movies, or musicals, turn a living room into a luxurious movie theater with plump pillows and chairs, or buy traditional movie snacks, like popcorn and candy, to enjoy. And, with the advantages of high speed internet that many families enjoy today, a family can easily stream a movie from a service such as Netflix without worrying about bothersome pauses or slow service, especially if another family member is also using the connection to play games, to watch videos, or for other reasons.
    · Game Night – With the variety of available games today, there is sure to be a game out there that will engage a whole family, regardless of age or interests. From traditional board games, such as Monopoly and Sorry, to more modern games, like Apples to Apples, to video games, like Dance Dance Revolution, moms and dads can bring the whole family together to engage in friendly competition and have fun together.
     · Crafts Night – While crafts night might be viewed as a family evening activity that initially seems to appeal more to the women and girls in a family, there are actually many crafts activities that even dads and their boys can enjoy. From tie-dying shirts and other clothes to doing craftsmanship, such as building furniture and birdhouses, to creating jewelry, there is a plethora of crafts that can keep everyone occupied and make for a memorable evening.

With these and other favorite evening, at-home activities, a family can easily spend an enjoyable night together and create lasting memories.

Getting out of the House for Family Night

Staying at home can make for a relaxing and inexpensive family activity night; however, sometimes going out for an adventure or outside activity can be a unique way to enjoy time with the whole family. When heading out of the house for an evening activity, a family may consider:
Boo at the zoo!
     · Going to the Park – Most cities, towns, and neighborhoods have a nearby park where a family can go to have some quality family time together once everyone is out of school and work. By packing up a picnic, taking the family dog, bringing a football, Frisbee, or ball, making some kites to fly, or taking along a favorite book, a family outing to the park can be relaxing and fun, not to mention a perfect family evening activity.
     · Eating at a Favorite Restaurant - While it used to be that most American families ate dinner together most nights, whether at home or at a restaurant, this is not true today, based on busy and conflicting schedules. Thus, finding a night where family member has a few hours to visit a favorite local restaurant can bring everyone together and make for a bonding family experience. Fortunately, with many websites and apps available today, including yelp.com and Urban Spoon, a family can easily find a restaurant that meets all their needs, such as type of food, family-friendly, outdoor seating, prices, games, and more.

Whatever activity a family chooses to do together, whether it's one of these five favorite activities or something else altogether, finding the time to enjoy each other is always important.

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