Sharing is caring!

During this month associated with Valentine’s Day, everyone is in a frenzy to show their loved ones just how much they care. You could spend a fortune on jewelry, flowers, chocolates, stuffed animals and more, but when it comes to family, there are a number of simple, sweet and inexpensive ways to show the love – not just on Valentine’s Day, but all year long.
1) Share Experiences Together: From starting new traditions to setting out on exciting adventures, there are countless ways for families to share experiences and make lasting memories together. Shoot for selfie-worthy experiences that the whole family will enjoy or – if you’ve got a lot of different personalities with varying interests in your brood – try to mix things up and explore a new thing each week that appeals to the specific interests of one member of your family. For instance, if one of you really loves the outdoors, pack a picnic and plan an excursion to go seashell and shark tooth hunting at the beach or hike the trails at a local park. If another one of you really loves to cook, take a cooking class together – then plan an elaborate meal to show off what you learned. If one of you is really into animals, while away an afternoon at the zoo or aquarium – maybe even invest in a behind-the-scenes experience for something with real staying power with all involved. Take it a step or two beyond the typical dinner and a movie night – although those can be really great, too. The point is to plan time well spent TOGETHER.
2) Spend Time Around the Dinner Table: Modern families are BUSY. Between dual-income parents commuting to and from work and kids loaded up on extracurricular activities and homework, it’s amazing that we get to spend ANY time together. However, it’s important that you MAKE time. One of the best times to do that is dinnertime and one of the best places to do that is around the dinner table. Turn off the TV and digital devices and focus for 45 minutes to an hour on your core family. According to GoodNet.org, eating together as a family can equate to strengthened relationships, healthier eating, better grades, greater happiness and lower stress. The website also cites research that examined 5,000 teenagers and revealed that when children eat with their parents regularly, they are more likely to become emotionally strong and boast better mental health. Dinner time is an awesome time to really stay in touch with your kids and where they are in their lives. Use conversation starters you find on the internet (there are THOUSANDS) to get everyone involved in the discussion or go around the table and have everyone share the high and low points of their day. It’s okay if you get off track of the original conversation. The point is to keep communicating with one another. That’s one of the best ways you can show the love! On the go? Dining out doesn’t always have to break the bank OR the scale. Family-friendly Woody’s Bar-B-Q offers lots of healthy choices at reasonable prices and many locations feature Kids Eat Free days.
3) Make or Purchase Thoughtful “Just Because” Gifts: It doesn’t have to be Valentine’s Day or any holiday for that matter for you to show the love to your family with a gift. You could make or purchase a little something that you know will make them smile. For example, you could make a frame or memory board and place a photo/photos from your recent adventures together as a family. Take into account their interests and use that as inspiration for your gift. If one of your children is particularly fond of a musician or band, surprise them with tickets to a concert or that artist’s latest CD. Have a budding artist in the family? Present them with an art kit, easel and a blank canvas or two. What a wonderful way to let your children or spouse know that you support their passions. The possibilities are endless!
4) Tell Them “I Love You” Every Chance You Get: We’ve saved the best for last… the BEST way to show your love to your family members is to SAY IT often. By verbally expressing your love, you won’t diminish its meaning. Instead, you’ll allow it to flourish and grow. A child who feels loved also feels safe and secure. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the delivery, those three little words have the power to produce joy, give hope, build trust and faith, remove fear and doubt, make the recipient feel valued and empowered, allow a child to thrive, let the recipient know it’s okay to make mistakes and – perhaps most importantly – motivate them to love others.
From all of us here at Woody’s Bar-B-Q, we wish you and yours a Happy Valentine’s Day!