Pizza… a movie… junk food… and the entire family chilling around the TV. The requisite check list items for our crew’s “Family Night”. What started out years ago as something fun for all of us to share, grew in to a weekly mandate by the kids. Not in a spoiled, “we want sugar” kind of way, but as a genuine need to spend fun time together. If mom or I try to weasel out of it on an especially busy weekend, they’ll call us on it. It’s something that has been especially important as the draws of school, work, Scouts, sports, and the like pull everyone in radical directions all week. Friday night is Family Night, and we do it together.
First off, it’s worth noting that there are magically no fattening calories in our house on Family Night. (It’s funny how that works out when you need it to.) We do admit that a banquet of combination pizza, chocolate doughnuts, and Cheetos aren’t going to win us any parenting awards for nutrition. However, the impact a simple tradition like this has on the crew makes it more than worthwhile in the end. It forms bonds that emphasize the importance of a close family that has fun together. Maybe when our kids are grown up, they will have a Family Night in their own homes… or perhaps they’ll come up with their own bonding tradition. Regardless, I do know that they will do something because it’s meant so much to them.
If you have simple traditions that your family shares or you remember as a kid, please share it. A family tradition can’t grow without first starting out as a new idea!