Believe it or not one of the best ways to bring your family together, create intimacy and a tight family bond is simply by having fun.

Playing games, going on adventures together, getting down and getting stupid, are just some of the ways to release stress and create loving relationships in your family.

‘Where do we find the time?’ parents ask. Well, this is a major priority so make the time. Parents feel better, kid’s emotional cups are filled and it is a win win situation. Fun does not mean you need to open your wallet; it can be as simple as rolling around with your children on the floor, or going for a walk. What is important is that you are totally present with your child, which is what they desire the most.

When we are relaxed and present with our children they are more likely to talk about themselves, their feelings and life. Precious moments.

Stop and smell the roses, literally, it is the little things in life that keep magic alive and all kids love magic. It is also important for adults, as we can get caught up the daily grind.

So here are 20 tips to help you on your way to; relaxing, laughing, being spontaneous, and letting it all hang out. Let your kids know how much fun you can be. Some of these suggestions may not be age suitable for your family, so adjust them to your needs.

  1. Camping in the back yard, or if you have toddlers, day time camping or building a cubby or fort with sheets and chairs.
  2. Picnics inside and outside, with special healthy treats
  3. Girls love to play ‘beauty salons’ with Mum and why not Dad as well, a honey and yoghurt face mask is good for everyone
  4. Fishing  with a crab net can be fun, even if you don’t catch anything you have been together, and there is always the fish and chip shop on the way home
  5. Board games and puzzles. You can create your own family rules to suit different ages
  6. Playgrounds, there are so many about and most councils have them on their web sites. Adventure playgrounds for older children are wonderful as Mum and Dad can participate too.
  7. Waterslides and swimming pools, noisy yes, but lots of fun if you have little fishes in your family. I love a good scream going down a waterslide; does wonders for stress relief.
  8. Have pyjama day at home, watch movies together and if your children play computer games ask them to teach you and explain the techniques, children love to teach parents
  9. Museums, libraries and Art Galleries often have special children’s exhibits, introduce some culture to your children
  10. Train and bus rides are a lot of fun, go to secret destinations with a picnic hamper packed to keep down the costs.
  11. Wild life parks  and  Botanical Gardens are interesting and you can take a ball or let the kids run free and teach your children how to climb trees safely
  12. In the summer water fights with the hose or filled balloons is a real hoot, remember to always have a discussion regarding safety first
  13. Depending on the age of your children, you could invite them to create a ‘special’ family day, with the stipulation that buying things is not an option.
  14. Family hikes burn up energy and can take your family to enjoy new experiences. Take home some of nature’s wonders and create a collage
  15. City councils often provide ‘Family fun days’ with free entertainment; investigate these as a family on the internet
  16. Make your own movies at home, with all family members making up their own story, dressing up and expressing themselves. You can show them to friends at their 21 st in the future
  17. It is great to wrestle with the kids, it develops the front lobes of the brain which helps in reading and maths application, remember this is healthy for girls too
  18. Investigate activities run by charities and raise money while walking, hoola hooping, skipping or running in a ‘fun run’. It is a great way to help your children learn about gratitude and become aware of how satisfying it can be to help others.
  19. Go to a pond and feed the ducks. Ducks can be very entertaining!
  20. The beach is a great place for swimming, surfing, playing ball sports, building sand castles and sculptures, having a picnic and of course, relaxing.

Some of these suggestions do take planning and may take you out of your comfort zone, be spontaneous, show your children the world around you.

When having fun it is important to leave behind baggage that weighs you down such as; over worrying about danger and what other people will think. Take precautions as necessary, plan well, then go out and get crazy, have fun and laugh a lot. It is healthy for our emotional, psychological and physical state. Let your inner child run rampant, give yourself and your children permission to get down, get stupid and discover each other.

Author

Arnaum has been a Parenting Counsellor for over 25 years, assisting and nurturing parents in developing their own unique parenting skills, and how to develop Conscious Parenting skills. In this time she has been involved in South Australia and other states and communities as an Early Childhood Worker, Breastfeeding Counsellor, Parenting Educator, Public Speaker, Counsellor, and Writer focusing on child development and parenting.

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