The laundry was hanging out on the line, the dog was lying in the sun and two of the three kids were playing ever so loudly in the pool, what a perfect afternoon. I grabbed my water and my notebook and sat in the shade of my fun rainbow umbrella to gather ideas and just brainstorm. The only thing that would make the day better was having my hubby lounging on the deck with me and my oldest daughter coming out of her room to socialize….aaaahhhhh peace…..for about 5 minutes or so and then the two pool buddies are not buddies anymore and the dog wants into the house, cause dang! it’s hot outside. With a heavy sigh I pack up my notebook and wait for a later time to brainstorm. Sundays in our house are “no electronic” days. This means that the devices get left on the chargers and we do things as a family. Sundays are catch up days where the board games come out and we catch up with each other. They have also been days when we just slow down grab a book or a paintbrush and do our own thing. It’s amazing the freedom and extra time you find when the electronics are off.
We have been implementing these “no electronic” Sundays for a few years now because we started to see that we would all be sitting in the same room and not do anything with each other. The girls were starting to realize there were apps like Tik Tok and Snap Chat that would monopolize their time and Fortnite became a huge part of my little man’s waking hours. The time the kids spent doing things online was starting to affect the way that they were treating each other and how they were acting to my hubby and I. To make matters worse they were following people that were not the best influence for them so something had to change. One Sunday afternoon we sat down and had a family talk. To say the kids were a little upset is an understatement but this needed to be done. At first it was a little rough, we had all been used to doing our own activities, but over time we started to see the benefits.
One of the first things we noticed is that we talked more. We learned more about each other and what we were going through throughout the week. We were able to actually discuss what the pastor talked about from the church service. We then moved to going on weekly walks. A lot of times the walk would be at the local park, and sometimes it was just around our neighborhood. We would harness up the ever excited Jorj (dog) and head out. Let me tell you, it is some of my favorite times on Sundays. The girls take Jorj and get ahead of the rest of us and talk and walk, and then my hubby, son and I would take up the rear and follow where they went. Since all week long it’s hard to get us all together, we make it a point to go on these walks and the next thing you know we are talking, we are laughing and we are enjoying being outdoors.
My brother and his family and few Christmas’s ago sent us the game called Exploding Kittens. This started our need for playing board/card games together. We would have game after game of Exploding Kittens eventually moving onto Speed or The Game of Life. We found out who was competitive, who was there just to have fun and then of course we found out quickly who the cheater was. Now I will admit that there was a time or two I may have taken a peek at the cards my son was holding but in my defense I was “helping” him play the game just a little bit better. Earlier this month we decided to make a corn hole set. We all worked together to build it and now it is one of the games we play once it cools down outside. Now I find I am always on the lookout for fun games to play with the family. With the endless amount of games out there we should be set for a while.
I think the best thing about “no electronics” Sundays is that we sit together as a family for our meals and the Ipads are not on. On most nights there is a movie on, or the TV is going when we are having dinner, but Sundays it is just us around the table. I love the conversations we have. Sometimes they are fun, other times we hash out problems we have had during the week. Mostly we get back in touch with each other and that is the most important thing. When the world tells us to go, go, go and we do just that, the people who get left behind are the ones that get hurt. Families have to make time for each other. I didn’t realize before we implemented these Sunday routines that we needed them so bad. Covid has made things slow down just a bit but not enough that our Sunday routine isn’t needed. We as families have to fight for time together. It is important, kids learn from how their parents deal with things. They see what they should value from their parents. So what are we showing them? What do we find so important that it pushes them aside? What will they learn to value and trust by watching us? I am so scared that I am not doing enough. I am finding my strength in knowing that I am not in this alone, I have my hubby but most importantly I have my God who will take my insecurities and imperfections as a parent and use them for His glory. I know my kids are His and His alone, I have just been put in charge of them for a little while. So while I have them, I need to make time to show them they are important and that family time is needed. Until next time:
“Being a family means you are a part of something very wonderful. It means you will love and be loved for the rest of your life.”Lisa Weed