Making My Home A Haven is important to me. Sharing homemaking skills. Recipes and food. Bible Studies. This is a treasure chest of goodies. So take a seat. Have a glass of tea and enjoy. You will learn all about who I am.
From Sarah :
I wish Danny enjoyed SPORTS. He understands the games but is not a fan of watching them on TV.
I miss watching the Cubs with my Dad ,dad , my sister and my Grandpa and Grandma Pettengell. My brother may have been there but if he was I really don’t remember it.
Both of my parents were raised in Chicago. Home OF THE CUBS. Forget THAT OTHER TEAM. It didn’t exist. LOL
Then when Bobby came along he watched with us. No one was a bigger fan than Bobby was.
When we lived in Colorado we still went home to Illinois to watch many of the Cub games. Either in St. Louis when they were playing the Cardinals or in Chicago at Wrigley Stadium. Or we cherished the Chicago games. The excitement.
We would either stay with my uncle or at a motel there. We would watch every game we could. Even the practices.
We also toured Chicago while we were there.
When we watched the games at home , we would always fix lots of food.Usually fajitas or nachos and chicken wings. A whole host of foods.
May 3, 2016
The art of the nacho goes like this… you need a base of chips. Freshly fried is preferred and I’m having a moment with flour tortillas from Old El Paso. EACH chip needs some melted cheese AND queso otherwise it’s pretty much naked just sitting there being sad. Once there is some cheese, in any form on top, you can stick it in the oven, melt everything and then top it with all the fixings! It’s very very very important to load it up – guacamole, pico, carne asada, the works… it needs to be a party on every chip.
When I was growing up, we had dinner around the table every. single. night. I’m convinced this is why my family is still so close – we built relationships through conversations around that table that still last today.
So, of course, when I had my own family, my plan was to institute family dinners every night. What better way to connect with one another? Deep conversations, lots of sharing, meaningful family moments – picture perfect, right?
Well, um, family dinners do not look that way at my house. They are loud and messy and somehow we are never all actually eating at the same time. Plus, when you’re the mom instead of the kids, making family dinners happen is a little more difficult. It means cooking. And serving. And effort. Lots of effort.
So if I’m honest, by 5pm I just want everyone to be quiet so I can TAKE A BREAK and maybe watch some Netflix. Or read a book. Or sleep. And my exhaustion battles my will for family dinners every. single. night.
So, to make family dinners a little more fun (for me), we’ve started a few activities around the table during dinner time.Not only do these make the conversation a little more interesting than the “joke” I’ve heard my kid already tell 15 times today, they also intentionally build relationships, teach our kids when it’s time to talk and when it’s time to listen, and somehow everyone eats a lot faster.
So, if you’re looking for a few ideas to help you connect with your kids & spice up family dinner each night I wanted to share our three favorite dinnertime activities.
1. Highs and Lows
This one is super simple, but really gets people talking about their days.We go around the table, and each person has to share at least one high and one low from their day. This is pretty funny every time we get to Nathan, because last week during snack time in his little 2-year-old class, a little boy took his snack and ate it. So every day ever since, he tells us that his low of the day is when the boy ate his snack. This isn’t exactly a 2-year-old activity, but he’ll get it, and the rest of us love it!
I’ve got a mason jar on our table, full of popsicle sticks. There are questions written on each popsicle stick, and we take turns pulling out a stick and asking someone at the table a question. This can be super silly or really intense, but it’s always a good conversation! (I wrote about my Table Talk Jar on this post, and you can find links to a list of questions there too.)
Let’s be honest, the whole reason I wrote this post is because I wanted to tell you about this game, and brag that I INVENTED IT. It’s so much fun and you have to start playing it TONIGHT.
So here’s what you do. You pick a genre of music (we almost always pick Disney songs because my kids are 2 and 5 and we know them ALL) to stick with, and then each person secretly picks a song they love. When it’s your turn, instead of singing the song out loud, you KNOCK the melody on the table (no music allowed – just knocking!), and everyone has to guess what song it is.
Alright, it might sound silly (and it is), but it is SO MUCH FUN. We can’t stop laughing the whole time, and my kids beg to play it every night.
So, if you’re looking for a way to make family dinners a little more fun while still connecting with your kids, try one (or all three!) of our favorite activities! I bet you’ll have such a blast that a quiet dinner while binge-watching Netflix won’t seem nearly as appealing.
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We do the high’s and low’s thing too but also add ‘what are you looking forward to about tomorrow’. Now my kids are 4 and 6 they are really getting it. My 4 yr old still gets a little confused about what he is doing the next day (farm, home or preschool) but he is getting the hang of it. I once read that doing this at the dinner table helps your children understand that they can talk to you later in life. With a highly emotional daughter I want her to feel that she can talk to me about anything! My son is also seeing an early intervention teacher about his anger management and the teacher thought that this was also fantastic to help my 4 yr old feel like his feelings are being heard and understood. This is one of the best things we have ever done! However, my husband and I do have two meals a week alone, just for a bit of peace and quiet!
What have you got planned for today? Open your mind to exciting new adventures.
Park your car a bit farther from the door and walk the rest of the way.
Walk at lunch or just get out and enjoy the fresh air.
FILL IT UP WITH IDEAS. DREAM. PLAN. FOLLOW THROUGH.
What changes can be done at work? Even the little changes can add up to big changes.
Fix something a bit different for lunches this week. Brighten up the dinner/supper table with some fresh flowers.
Eat with your children.
Or add a bright table cloth.
Have a picnic supper.
It doesn’t have to be a weekend to have a picnic or eat outside.
Or make plans to have one on Saturday.
Watch a family movie with your kids.
Just watch their favorite show with them.
Enjoy your time together as a family.
If you live by yourself. Then do some of these things as well.
Flowers always make the home a bit brighter.
Light a candle or two.
Make a special meal just for yourself.
Pick a favorite movie.
Just DO something different.