Some of our best times growing up in my family were our “Family Nights.” EVERY Friday night was Family Night. It was a tradition that did not let go easily once we were teenagers.
Sometimes we’d go out to eat or go to the beach. One favorite was visiting a fish and pet store – tiny little place, but boy did we enjoy it. Sometimes we stayed in and laughed til the tears came over silly card games or indoor basketball games.
I remember my stomach aching from laughing and running so hard when we played Pickle (basically the same as being in a pickle in baseball). This was good, free fun, just the 5 of us, not caring who saw or heard us being complete goof-balls.
This past Friday night, Jon, Riley and I went to the sea wall, which is only a short way from our house. Some friends had invited us to eat and hang out. So we weren’t alone as a family, but certainly enjoyed each other’s company.
We sat on a fold-out blanket with a tray of baked pasta and a bowl of peas, stuffing our faces with our backs to the wind. Then Riley took off through the thick grass to explore and force us to work off our dinner (at which point we discovered that some folks don’t obey the pick-up-your-dog’s-doodie signs that are posted everywhere).
Getting compliments on our “lovely girl” made it memorable. So did cracking jokes with our friends, complaining about cheese-induced bellyaches, and watching our son learn how to climb up and down a stair… and up and down… and up and down… and up… and down…
By the time our kids are grown and would rather hang out with friends on Friday nights, I know it will feel like we had “no time at all together” – that it went by way too fast.
So for now I’ll enjoy Family Nights – often free, always fun. I love my family.
What do you do to stay close as a family? I’d like to get some good ideas. 🙂