free, family friendly activities for bonding

Creative and inexpensive ideas for family bonding

Whether you are a parent or grandparent, make sure to enjoy every moment with your family, because those precious moments go by so fast. Here are eight easy and affordable options for family bonding.

Game night. Play board games such as Monopoly, Life, Battleship or any of the other classic games. Enjoying game night with the TV off creates opportunities to laugh together and have a friendly competition.

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Give back to the community. Nothing beats the satisfaction of helping people in need. It also allows your family to grow closer to each other. It could be something as simple as shoveling the sidewalk for an elderly neighbor or serving up a meal for those in need.

Worship together. It's the perfect way to enrich family life. Going to church isn't the only possibility; home family worship, including singing songs, learning about God and praying for each other strengthens family connections.

Get active. Whether you go ice skating, hiking, walking or camping, spending time with your family creates outstanding outdoors bonding opportunities. Another suggestion: Work up a sweat with your family at the local fitness center.

Eat together. It sounds so simple, but too many families miss out on this opportunity. Eating meals together allows time to connect with children about their day and share what's going on in your life. What a great way to strengthen family bonds.

Unplug the electronics. The simple act of turning off the TV, computer, video games, phones, tablets and other electronic devices creates a golden opportunity for the entire family to interact without distractions. Try going "unplugged" and spend more quality time with your family.

Read together. Getting close and escaping into another world together is a wonderful way to build family bonds. Light the fireplace, open a book and lose yourself in a great story.

See the local sights. So many people are surrounded by museums, theaters and art galleries. Don't just take advantage of these offerings when you're hosting out-of-town guests. Set a great example for your family by planning a visit to one of the many attractions your city has to offer.

A special suggestion for parents of young children. If you have young children, tuck them in at night. Ask your children about their day, pray with them and tell them just how precious they are to you.

Care to share your family bonding tips and suggestions? Please submit them in the comments section below.

Source: VitaJournal, January 2013

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March 25, 2013
All good suggestions but I believe that the most important thing for building strong family bonds (even more than activities), is simply having a SINCERE interest in children or grandchildren. Remember, "It's more important to be interested than interesting."
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