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Family Reunion -- May 2009

Family Reunion

There is nothing better than catching up on the good old days. If your family doesn't already hold an annual reunion, you should put one together. Getting together as a family will help your children realize where they come from and give them a sense of pride. Here are a couple of ideas for a fun family reunion.

Camping. If your family is big into the outdoors camping may be your event. Have each family bring their own tents and pitch in for the food. Spending time around the camp fire will take you back and give you an opportunity bond with the whole family.

Dine Together. If you don't want a big hassle, and you don't want to spend too much time together, a restaurant might just do the trick. Eating together is a great opportunity to catch up and the best part is - very little preparation is involved. If this is your first get together, it might be just the perfect first step.

Birthday Bash. Plan a big birthday party for the whole family. This will be a great opportunity to celebrate everyone's birthday while catching up with the whole family. Have a cake, streamers, ice cream, the whole bit. Play children's games like pin the tail on the donkey and musical chairs. Arrange a white elephant gift exchange so everyone gets a present for their "birthday".

Competition. Good old fashion competition can bring the whole family together - even if it is against your brothers family. Play intramural sports games, board games, card games, or any kind of competitive game. This creates a fun interactive way to get to know your family. It also gives everyone a reason to be together.

Talent Show. The classic talent show is an excellent way to spend time with one another. As an extended family unit, it is hard to keep track of everyone. This is a great way to get to know a little more about one another.

Holiday Reunion. There is no better time to get together than during the holidays. Most people have time off of work, so you will have a better turn out. Remember there are more holidays to choose from than Thanksgiving and Christmas, the Forth of July, Memorial Day, and Labor Day are great days to plan for a reunion as well.

Travel Reunion. Spending your travel vacation with extended family can be a lot of fun. Plan a big trip with the whole family to a place you have all wanted to go - then save all year for the event. Everyone in the family will be sure to enjoy this type of reunion.

Whatever type of reunion you choose to have is a good one. Just simply spending time as an extended family is so important. Have fun and don't forget to enjoy the process of getting to know one another.

Family Training Night: Five tips on how to spend enjoyable, quality time with your family.

Family Training Night

1. Turn off your cell phone. Your children have to compete for your attention everyday. When you are spending time with them...really spend time with them. By giving your family your 100% attention, wonderful things begin to happen! You'll first notice tension levels dropping. Everyone will start associating family time as work-free, stress-free time.

2. Have a plan. Boredom breeds contention. If you really want to enjoy time with your children and not just be their personal referee, you are going to have to put a little effort into planning. After all, you'd never go to a business meeting without your presentation and proper equipment? No one knows your family better than you. If you know that your son hates going out to the movies, don't try to convince him - find something everyone will enjoy.

3. Have one-on-one Conversations with each family member. No matter what activity you choose to do with your family make sure and have real conversations. Talking to your kids about what is happening in their lives is so important. It will show them that you care and are interested in what they are doing. Talk to them about their teachers, their friends, their goals.....well, everything. Use family training nights to catch up on your child's life.

4. Be Consistent. Pencil it in. Make one night a week "family training time." If you are consistent every week - even if the activity consists of dinner and a movie at home, your family will come to expect it. There will be no argument or even hesitation. It will become a part of their routine.

5. Have Fun! Make sure that every Family Training Night ends with laughter and fun! Children need to see their parents having a good time WITH them. Laughter doesn't cost money and you don't need a prescription.....you just need to be there.....and, smile!

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