February 28, 2013

What We Do For Family Time

This year for Christmas my sister came up with the idea that my brother, sister, and I should do family gifts.  So one gift for an entire family.  At first I didn't really get it, but then as my sister talked about some ideas it clicked.

So Pat and I brainstormed what we would like from my brother and sister's families.  One gift was easy to come up with.  We got a zoo membership for the small zoo in our city.  Unfortunately we haven't gone yet since it's been so cold, but I know that we're going to use it a ton this spring, especially because it is so close by.  I love going to the zoo with the kids.

For the other gift, we knew we wanted something that would promote family time.  We enjoy spending the evenings in the family room all cuddled up on the sectional watching movies.  So when Pat was talking about popcorn, we decided a popcorn popper would be an awesome gift for us.  After reading reviews on several we decided on this one, and it has not disappointed.
I was hoping we'd keep it healthy by popping our own popcorn, but that hasn't happen so much.  Our favorite popcorn to make is with melted butter and sprinkled with cinnamon sugar.  If you haven't tried that yet, you haven't lived ;)  We all love movie nights with popcorn.

As much as we love our popcorn nights, we realized we couldn't do it every single night.  After all, how much popcorn can one family eat, right?  So we wanted more options for family time.  I told Pat that I was thinking that maybe we should get an Xbox with Kinect.  We agreed and found a good deal on one.  A couple weeks ago we set it up and have tried many games.  At first I was super disappointed as many of the games were much too hard for the kids to control.  I began thinking we had wasted a lot of money.  However, through a lot of trial and error we've finally found a few games that our boys can really use.  Here are our favorite games:

1.  Nickelodeon Dance 2  This game is totally geared toward the kids.  You do what the characters on screen do.  Two people can play together.  It's kind of like a mini aerobics workout.  I love playing with the kids and it gets me moving a little bit.  The boys even love playing it together, and it helps get their energy out.

2.  Sesame Street Once Upon a Monster  I figured a Sesame Street game must be age appropriate for our little boys to play.  Ryan and I played this game together the other day.  It was really nice to play together, and the activities were fun like dancing, jumping, flying.  There was a good variety of movements and stories.

3.  Carnival Games: Monkey See Monkey Do  Our whole family really enjoys this game.  Our favorite activity is skee ball.  There are so many different games to play on this like ring toss, roller coaster, strength test, crash test dummy, etc.  This game is used almost every single time we play.

There are a lot of other games out there for kids.  We've tried several, but these were the best for our 3 and 5 year old so far.

What does your family do for family time?


The Fischer Family said...

I love family gifts! My mom has given us family passes to the Cincinnati Zoo and Kings Island. We've gotten family passes to the Newport Aquarium. We love family games and have quite a collection. They are a few that we always round up to take on our camping trips: Apples to Apples, Phase 10, Headbandz and Scrabble Upwords. We also always have a plain deck of cards for Euchre and Solitaire. We have a Wii and love family games for that. The Disney and Glee Karaoke are really fun. As are all the Just Dance games. They also have a Hasboro Family Game Night game that's really fun. We also love family movie nights with popcorn or ice cream sundaes. Really time we can be together as a family is my favorite thing!

Anonymous said...

We play games as a family too! W is finally getting to the age where he can follow simple game instructions. We also have family time every morning - DS comes into our room for about 20-30 minutes before we 'get up' for the day. We spend that time laying in bed and talking about our upcoming day. It is one of my favorite moments of the day. :)

Kate @ Daffodils said...

What a great idea. Getting the zoo membership was so nice!

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