There is so much going on in the world right now, that I find solace in just being able to spend time with my family. Yes, we have been together 24/7 for the last seven months, yes it has been hard. But it has also been one of the most rewarding times I have had in years.
Like most parents, I don’t particularly enjoy virtual schooling, cooking 30 times a week, all while trying to function as an employee, entrepreneur, and maintain my sanity. As adults we get so caught up in the things we ‘have to’ do, that we might forget to take advantage of the time together with our family and just play!
There is no doubt that the hard times 2020 has brought have forever changed the lives the hundreds of thousands of people. But as we look forward to 2021 here are a few ways that we can take the highs and lows of the year make this chapter one that we can create unforgettable memories together.
Learn a new skill: Isla loves coding and building. She wanted to take the skills she has learned to the next level and has been doing an amazing job learning how to code her Unicornbot to do different things. Even being able to turn it into other animals.
Discover new books to read: My kids love to read, but they only love one genre of books. So I challenged them (and myself) to branch out and read new types of books. Stepping out of our comfort zone is a lesson that 2020 is making sure that we all have learned as adults, and I am glad that I have encouraged my kids to do the same.
Get ahead: So I know virtual schooling is hard enough, and the last thing you probably want to do is have to teach your kids something else, but why not? I thought this would be the perfect time to start working with the girls on “money matters.” being in the house and having to clean so often we have found a lot of loose change! Since I let them keep it, I wanted to make sure they knew how much they had at all times. Learning to count money has been fun (and difficult) but, teaching them about finances early is priceless.
Cook together: Isla loves cooking and she loves being able to cook with me. So I made it a point to try and get her in the kitchen as much as possible. Much like I have done with Alyssa and Andrew, and they both are able to make complete dinners for our entire family now.
Don’t just have a movie night, have a movie day (or weekend): So we are hardcore binge watchers. We love taking a series of movies and spending the entire weekend and watching them with our kids. Quarantine has only expanded that and we have been able to get through more of the movies we have wanted to watch with them than we did previously.
Take self-care seriously: I know this is an odd one, but yes, you can take your self-care seriously and you need to. I know it’s not easy for everyone, but being able to carve out a little time for yourself each day is important. One thing I have learned is that working on myself this year has helped me become a better wife, mother, and human overall.
Pull out your favorite games: From your family’s favorite board games to bring out everyone’s competitive sides. My family LOVES board games, especially Monopoly. Here are a few of our fav versions:
Listen to music…new and old: I never imagine that I my girls would love listening to Britney Spears on VINYL of all things! Introducing my kids to my old favorites and having them introduce me to their new favorites has been a bonding experience that I cannot put into words. While we may not love everything about each others music, one thing is for sure, is that we enjoy just being able to kick back and listen to some tunes.
Love of impromptu dance parties, 80’s cartoons, and horizontal life pauses (aka naps); Natasha Brown is a stay at home mom of 4 kids, and wife to one lucky guy! In her spare time, she is co-editor of Grits & Grace, as well as editor for The Mother Hustler Blog and Creative Director for the Mother Hustler podcast.