If Monday is typical, by Tuesday everyone is a little surly and ready for it to be Friday. This is the perfect time to build something into the week that everyone can look forward to. In our blog on Raising the Tech Savvy Kid (add link) we discussed the importance of time away from the devices, namely Taco Tuesday Game Night.
Let’s be clear: no one wants to go through a big production this early in the week with so much other activity going on. So keeping it simple is best. But bonding over a nutritious meal doesn’t require a ton of effort. Here are some easy ways to get everyone involved, have some fun and take care of business at the same time.
- All devices in one place. Laptops, tablets and cell phones go in one corner not to be turned on for the rest of the evening. We even recommend leaving the TV off and just playing music.
- Set up a taco bar. Tacos are a great choice because they don’t take much time and everyone likes them. Parents can cook ground meat and beans while kids scoop avocado or grate cheese. For soft tacos, wrap some tortillas in foil and put them in the oven at 350 for 4-5 minutes. For picky eaters, a little grated carrot or shredded lettuce can get tucked into a taco without evoking protest.
- Everyone helps clean up. Kids can cap up condiments like salsa and sour cream, grown ups handle the sharp utensils and everyone loads their own plate into the dishwasher or steps up to the sink to wash. The clean up goes much faster when everyone chips in.
- Once the table is clear, pull out some board games. The classic board games of our childhood like Candyland, Monopoly, Sorry and Life are all still available, and why? Because they are still awesome! Grownups take a stroll down memory lane and kids get to flex their basic skills. If you have little ones, they can team up with a grown up and move the game pieces.
Once Taco Tuesday Game Night develops into a weekly ritual, the whole process will go even smoother and everyone will enjoy their participation. The rest of the week will feel a little more manageable with that solid plan in place, and you can even implement that idea for other days of the week. Having a plan and an automated routine takes the stress out of dinner, letting everyone relax and spend some quality time. And that is what being a family is all about.