In the digital age of social networking, I have to slow down and remind myself to keep relationships real and face to face with my family. My wife and kids are part of my network. However, they need face to face time. Can you imagine telling your kids to email you or connect to Facebook for a family outing? I have nieces living across the country and I do connect with them on Facebook because they are thousands of miles away.
Today, I am going to take my family for a walk around Lake Elizabeth. It's almost 70 degrees outside and we need time together. My wife and I walk while my 2 boys ride their scooters over, through, and around everything. We usually witness at least 4 crashes before we complete the 3 mile loop. My wife and I have time to catch up and talk. My kids get to exercise and explore. I would like to remind my wife to leave her Ipod at home as it's a distraction for good conversation. How do you my most beloved to give me 100% attention? Some things are best left unsaid. She likes to relax with music in the background. I like things quiet.
Making time for our families should not be a chore. I love to get all of us together for play times. After we walk the lake, my boys want to play street hockey. I get right out there with them and play the game. They want to get rough and so do I.
The key is to choose activities that your kids like. If you don't particularly enjoy the activity, just enjoy the moment of watching your kids play. Everyone needs an audience. What my kids enjoy, I enjoy. What I am trying to say is that I enjoy watching them. I realize that each day with them is a gift. When they are 20 years old, they will not be doing the goofy things that they are doing at ages 6 & 8. When they are riding their scooters around the lake, they hide behind bushes or rocks that are almost in full view. As long as they hide their eyes, they think that we cannot see them and so we make a game out of it, pretending that we see the scooters but not them. It is so precious!
Every minute with your children is a gift. Enjoy it because the time not spent with your kids will never come back. Time spent will. You will remember it forever. Chances are they might remember it too, but don't count on it. Children live for today and forget what happened yesterday. They don't hold on to the past. Parents do. When you spend quality time with them, you will live a life with no regrets.