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A few years ago, when I began planning family nights, I was so excited about the idea of us having that fun time together every week!
But after a while, I struggled to find new ideas to try, and sometimes I didn’t have the time or energy to prepare anything for our family night.
We ended up having fewer family nights and what started as a weekly habit turned into an activity we did once in a while when I had time to prepare it.
Then, one evening, my oldest son came to me with a big drawing of our family having fun together in the living room.
He told me that his teacher invited all the kids to share their favorite family activity in class the next day, and he wanted to tell everyone how fun our family nights were.
Seeing his drawing touched my heart because I realized how much he loved that special time we spent together every week.
Because although we do many fun activities together, our family night was something he always looked forward to. It was our way of connecting as a family every single week, and making sure we prioritize family time even when life gets busy.
I wanted to bring back our weekly family nights, but I knew that without a simple way to prepare them, I wouldn’t be able to stick to this habit for long.
The easy way to plan a fun family time every week
You certainly heard of the idea of planning a weekly family night many times before, but the truth is that turning it into a habit isn’t as easy as it might seem.
As parents, we already have a lot on our plates, so the last thing we need is another complicated task to add on our to-do list.
Instead, having a simple system in place will help you plan family nights easily and create a habit that will bring your family closer.
Here is how you can quickly plan your family nights in advance and start building happy memories with your kids every week:
Step 1| Set a day of the week for your family night
Choose a day that works best for everyone in your family, and treat your weekly family night as a priority.
Fridays are a good choice because the kids don’t have school the next day, so you don’t need to do any preparations the evening before, and your kids can stay up a little late.
Step 2 | Create a calendar to use every month to plan your family nights
Instead of coming up with new ideas every week and wasting time trying to figure up what to do for your family night, create a calendar that you use again and again every month.
Here is an example to use as inspiration: (we use Fridays as an example, but you can replace it with any day of the week you choose)
- First Friday of the month: Family game night
To keep it fun every week, choose different games each time or alternate between one week of board games and one week of card games.
- Second Friday of the month: Family movie night
To plan the movie night quickly without wasting time debating what to watch, create a list of movies you want to watch with the kids and select one movie from the list every month.
Make this family night feel special by preparing a few tasty snacks and drinks to enjoy together during the movie.
Here is a list of ideas to inspire you: 50+ of the best movie ideas for family movie night.
- Third Friday of the month: Choice of the month
This family night is the only one that requires a little more preparation because you’ll choose a different idea every month.
But the fact that you only need to do this once a month instead of coming up with ideas every week makes it a lot easier to manage.
Make a list of 12 ideas you want to try throughout the year and plan one every month.
Here are some ideas:
- January: Create a vision board and a family bucket list for the new year. Invite the kids to come up with ideas and create drawings for the vision board.
- February: Put together a big puzzle while listening to a nice playlist of your favorite songs. (Glow in the dark puzzles are very fun for the kids.)
- March: Have a LEGO building night. Build a city (or a fantasy land) together and invite every family member to add different elements to it.
Here are many other ideas to try: The ultimate list of the best family night ideas.
(If you are a member of the Family Joy Club, you can find new ideas to try every month inside the activity guide.)
- Fourth Friday of the month: Favorite family activity
The theme for this fourth Friday of the month is inspired by what your family likes to do together. Think about an activity that is very easy to plan and that your family could do over and over again without getting bored.
Here are some examples:
- If your family enjoys art activities, plan a painting night and choose a different theme every month.
- If your family enjoys getting active, plan a dance party every month and try different playlists.
- If your kids love cooking, try a new recipe together or plan a “make your own pizza” night when every family member gets to prepare and decorate their pizza.
- If your family loves board games, plan an additional game night or a family game marathon.
You only need to choose this activity once and repeat it every month with small adjustments.
- If the month also has a fifth Friday, plan another family movie night but add a fun twist by preparing a hot cocoa bar or an ice-cream bar to enjoy during the movie.
Set 3 | Create a plan for the next 3 months
The easiest way to start this habit of enjoying a weekly family night with your kids is to plan the first 3 months in advance.
It will be a lot easier for you to stick to this habit knowing that you have all the ideas already planned.
All you need to do is use this Family Night Planner, fill in the blanks using the ideas in this article as inspiration, and you’ll easily plan 3 months worth of fun family nights.
Then, you’ll only need to repeat this every quarter to have all your family nights planned in just a few minutes.
I hope you’ll enjoy this simple way of planning a fun family time every week and that it will bring many happy moments with your little ones!