Six Tips to Staying Connected: Even When Your Family Is Busy

If you’re a Mom, then you know. It’s hard to find quality family time in the midst of crazy schedules. Our children are busier than ever. From youth group activities to sports practices to school events, it seems every single minute of the day is scheduled. And when you add in our equally jam packed planners with women’s ministry responsibilities, work, and Mom duties (not to mention, we’d like to see our husbands once in a while)—finding ways to keep the family connected can be challenging. 

But not impossible. 

It will take some planning on your part, but you can do this, and here are six ideas to get you started.

  1. Family Game Night: Schedule a family game night twice a month and post the “Game Nights” on the fridge so everyone is aware of the upcoming family fun. Yes, even the teens in the family will enjoy this night if you let them have a say. So, let each family member plan a game night throughout the year, and continue rotating the responsibility. Your teens may choose an exciting night of laser tag or cosmic bowling while your younger children may opt for a rousing game of Twister or Monopoly at home. Whatever the game of choice, just enjoy your time together, and let the games begin!
  2. Family Fitness Fun: Organize a family fitness fun time several times a week—even if it’s just for 30 minutes. Take a neighborhood walk together—walking dogs, pushing strollers, etc. Try pairing up with a family member and using that time to share prayer requests and concerns. Then, pound the pavement and pray for each other’s needs. Or head to the nearest park and play Frisbee with the fam. Or go for a family bike or hike, trying out new trails in your area. It will be great exercise and lots of fun! That’s a win/win!
  3. Family Secrets & Traditions: There’s nothing like an “inside joke,” a family secret, or a special tradition to bring a family closer together, so come up with some in your household. For instance, any time a clock (or your smartphone) has the same numbers such as “3:33” or “5:55,” tell your family members that’s code for “Time to remember how much I love you.” You’ll be surprised how much your kids will get into this kind of thing—even the ones who act “too cool” to participate.  
  4. Family Dream Jar: When a family has a common goal, it brings everyone together in a new way. So, why not come up with a family dream that you can work toward such as: a fantastic family vacation or a big screen TV or season tickets to a local professional sports team? Once you agree on a family goal, place a “dream jar” in a common area such as the kitchen, and encourage everyone to begin plunking change into it. With every family member participating, that jar will fill up over and over again until that dream is finally realized, and what a celebration that will be! 
  5. Family Date Nights: While it’s great to spend time together as a family unit, it’s also important to spend one-on-one time with each other. So, get out your family planner and start scheduling date nights with your kids and spouse. For example, on the first Friday night of the month, maybe Dad and daughter go to dinner and a movie while Mom and son go grab a hot dog and take in a baseball game. Mix it up, letting each child spend quality time with each parent over the course of a few months. Remember, these date nights don’t have to be expensive outings. You can take in a free concert in the park with your teen daughter or enjoy a picnic lunch under the stars with your spouse—just make sure you give these dates priority.  
  6. Movies & Munchies: Everyone will look forward to this one because who doesn’t love watching movies while munching on your favorite snack? Choose a free weekend night to “couch potato it” together. It’s even more fun when you have themed movie nights. For example, do a princess-themed night, and watch several family friendly movies involving royalty while feasting on princess popcorn balls and cookies shaped like tiaras. 

Bottomline, it’s important to make family time a priority. Time really is our most precious commodity, so spending it with the ones you love the most, just makes sense. Sure it will take some extra planning and schedule maneuvering, and you may encounter some bellyaching and eye rolling in the beginning, but plan those family fun nights anyway…it’ll be so worth it. 





Michelle Medlock Adams is an award-winning author, earning more than 90 industry accolades, and her 100-plus books have sold almost four million copies. She has written more than 1,700 articles, helped pen a New York Times bestseller, blogged for Guideposts, taught at hundreds of writers conferences, and hosted TBN’s “Joy in Our Town” TV program. Today, she has her own children’s book imprint “Wren & Bear Books” as part of End Game Press’ publishing house, and she co-owns Platinum Literary, a boutique consulting and marketing firm. Her book Dachshund through the Snow is available to personalize through Make Momentos. 

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