I used to be the kind of person who filled each day to the brim with a diverse array of activites and commitments. Confined chaos, unpredictability, and sprinkles spontaneity. I desired to accomplish as much as possible, and in a little time as possible.
It was through the birth of my first biological child and in the months that followed where I identified my hurried daily bustle as unhealthy and unsustainable. My life required more routine, ritual, and slowness.
I noticed how the flow of the day and the choices I made affected not only my daughter and I, but rippled through to my husband and stepdaughter.
In efforts to foster a more calm, balanced, and happier household, my husband, stepdaughter, and I brainstormed what and how we could implement a few routines and rituals into our life. This is what we came up with:
1} Themed dinners for each day of the week
My stepdaughter and I have so much fun picking recipes and filling in the white board. Since beginning themed meals, she enjoys cooking more, and she enjoys the food even more.
2} Supper eaten together
While we generally ate supper together, we identified it as a very important part of our daily life. We made a few changes, such as no technical devices at the table, lighting candles, and waiting until we are all seated to begin eating.
3} Sunday brunch
Who doesn’t like Sunday brunch?!
4} Rose, Thorn, Bud
This is a fun activity we do during supper, now every night. Each family member takes a turn describing a great part of they day, a tough part of the day, and something exciting in the future. We find this a great segue into more conversation at the table.
Picking a festival or two each month to celebrate
Together, we pick a festival to research and celebrate. February, we celebrated the Chinese New Year. March, we plan to celebrate the Spring Equinox and St. Patrick’s Day.
We all love music. We have learned several new songs we sing to our baby, for example, during diaper changing and when we greet the day.
1} As best we can, we try to get outside every Saturday for some fun physical activity.
Even in the frigid cold, we stuff warmers in our mittens and boots, and go snowshoeing, sledding, skiing, etc.
2} Sundays are either days when my stepdaughter arrives for the week, or wraps up a week with us.
We try to keep mellow and close to home for the transition. As I mentioned above, we have brunch, and then we spend the afternoon doing a project—whether it be cleaning, home improvement, or a craft/building project.
These are a few of the new routines and rituals we implemented as a family. Do you have special routines and rituals you practice as a family or for yourself throughout the week?