A lot can happen in a few days. While the world is currently dealing with the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and many are quarantined, it is leaving a lot of families scrambling to find other sources of daycare, figuring out how to work from home, if possible, and how to become a homeschool teacher. This past week while my wife and kids were off school for spring break, we were able to use this time to figure out how we were going to move forward through this pandemic. Below are ways we spent time as a family to take a mental break from the chaos.
I figured I’d better start with this one since it is the most important. We have tried to have some sort of prayer life in our family since the beginning. The problem is that our prayer life hasn’t always been consistent. It gets more consistent when times are tough and more lax when times are good (convenient, I know).
A few weeks ago, our family started a new tradition. We were selected to host the Our Lady of Fatima statue that travels around our community. This year, we received a call asking if we would like to host the statue during the first week in March. Of course we said yes and were honored to do so.
For those of you who are not familiar with Our Lady of Fatima, here are some helpful links:
The requirement of hosting the Our Lady of Fatima statue is to pray the rosary daily with family and friends. This was a great experience for our family to pray together (even though the kids did not always sit still) and pray to God for our intentions and to also give thanks for our blessings. Little did we know that this would help kick-start our family rosary in the wake of the current pandemic.
We find it comforting to say the rosary as a family and know that ultimately we are not in charge; God is. Also, we have noticed that the kids are starting to pick up on some of the prayers, which is really encouraging. They really are paying attention to what we are doing as parents and we hope to continue this year round, through good times and bad.
When I was a kid l loved to get my face painted at a fair or event where it was available. My kids are no different. We go through a lot of crayons, pens, and paints in our house. While our house is covered with our kids’ drawings (even on the walls) sometimes they are looking for new canvases to draw on. As a change of pace, my wife purchased some face painting crayons. These were a hit to say the least.
My wife let our kids “draw” on her face. While drawing on my wife’s face, the kids couldn’t stop laughing. They had so much fun creating their masterpiece. While the photo I took (cough, cough, she won’t let me post the picture) didn’t turn out, here is The Cat in The Hat drawing I drew on my son’s face.
This was one way that he actually stopped touching his face. He was so worried about smearing the drawing that he didn’t touch his face (as much as he normally does). A bonus in these current times.
Growing Mushrooms Indoors
You grow your own mushrooms, right? Kidding. A few weeks ago our neighbor knocked on our door and asked if we wanted a mushroom growing kit he had received. Knowing that our son, Jude, is extremely interested in growing things and learning how things work, he knew Jude would get a kick out of it.
We started growing our Back To The Roots Organic Mushroom Growing Kit the week before our spring break started. We did this knowing that he would be home during Spring Break and be able to watch the mushrooms fully develop in just 10 days. This was our first time trying such a kit. Not only is it educational but they are also edible.
Hang a Bird Feeder Outside a Window
Mother nature provides its own entertainment this time of year. With the new bird feeder our family received for Christmas, we thought it would be a great time to hang it up. Little did we know that we would see all kids of birds and even squirrels looking for food. The kids are glued to the window at times looking for different birds and going bonkers when a squirrel is hanging on the bottom of the birdfeeder trying to steal a little food.
For the meantime, we can go outside. This has proved helpful for all of us to burn off a little energy after I am done with work. While we don’t visit the playgrounds like we normally do, we have a good time walking around while it’s still daylight out.
As you can see, we are practicing our social distancing skills.
Making the Most of Togetherness
This time of uncertainty is hard. It is testing us in many different ways. My hope for all of you is that you find the positive out of this hard time. With all of this extra family time, I hope we can all find something that made us better for spending the time together. We will get through this, and hopefully we all come out the other side of this better for it in the long run.
What are you doing with your family during this time? Share your thoughts in the comments below.