Family bonding is one of the most important parts of life. It strengthens relationships and creates lasting memories and traditions that will be passed on for generations. However, with the distractions of modern life, it has become difficult to find activities that engage the entire family. Fortunately, many time-honored ways for a family to bond are still appealing today. Even just getting the family together to watch free movies online can make for a great evening.
Make the Most Out of Your Bonding Time
In order to spend time with your family, it’s best to schedule a week or two ahead. With work, school and social lives, coordinating everyone’s schedule can prove difficult. However, if you let everyone know about the activity in advance, you can guarantee that the entire family is present. Use a centrally located calendar to keep everyone informed of any upcoming activities. Place a calendar on the fridge, cabinets or even in the bathroom so that it can be regularly seen.
Explore the following time-honored ways to spend time with your family:
- Explore the Outdoors. Even if you live in a metropolis, there are likely nearby parks that can provide an outdoor escape. Take a regular bike ride together; perhaps even rent a tandem bike. Get each member of your family inline skates and skate around the park. If you live near a body of water, that presents dozens of options. Relax on the shore, take a swim or rent a paddleboat. Exploring the outdoors is a fun and healthy way to strengthen family bonds.
- Share Each Other’s Hobbies. Chances are each family member has hobbies and interests that he or she enjoys regularly. Your son may enjoy building model cars, or your daughter enjoys hoop dancing. Take an evening together and explore each other’s interests. Buy five model cars and put them together as a family. Buy several hoops, and let your daughter teach the family how to use them. Whatever the hobbies may be, allowing your children to share them with the rest of the family will build their confidence and make for a fun-filled evening.
- Create a New Tradition. Consider traditions your parents had. Perhaps you would cook dozens of cookies every holiday season or cook dinner every Sunday. Brainstorm ideas for traditions that you would like to start. Consider everyone’s suggestions, interests and favorite activities. A tradition that the entire family enjoys will be more likely to stand the test of time. You never know the level of family bonding that these traditions can impart. Your new tradition may last for generations and become a focal point of future families’ bonding experiences, too.
- Go to the Zoo. Taking your family to a zoo exposes your children to species of wildlife that they may have never encountered before. A zoo combines physical and mental activity. Bring your camera and allow everyone to pose in front of favorite exhibits. Who knows, you may walk away from the zoo with a new tradition.
- Enjoy Downtime. Family bonding doesn’t always have to involve something active. After a long day of school and work, your family may be too drained to do something that involved. Instead, relax in front of the TV with a family movie. You can even stream online movies directly to your HDTV or to a connected laptop.
Have Fun Together, Stay Together
Make it a habit for your family to spend at least one evening together every week. Whether you’re visiting the zoo or watching movies, any time spent together is quality time.
Image from Flickr’s Creative Commons
About the Author: Tyler Robin is a contributing writer and father. Once he started scheduling time to regularly bond with his family, he found his relationships begin to strengthen. Even watching movies together on Crackle.com has proven to be an effective way to improve family ties.