This past Saturday, the four Wheelers headed to the Home Depot, Best Buy, Michaels, West Music, Lemstone Books, Family Christian Store, and Kohl’s. While at Best Buy, we ran into an acquaintance who asked:
“What brings you all out together?”
That question was quickly followed by his own answer:
“Oh, that’s right. You all do everything together.”
Without doing anything out of the ordinary (for us), our family had made an impression. While it really isn’t true that we do everything together (especially as our children have grown older), we do do a lot together. We attend each other’s recitals and contests. We go to church together. We tour college campuses as a family. We attend each other’s sporting events. And sometimes we run errands on Saturday morning together.
Statistics have shown that doing things together is good for the health of a family. In fact, the camping industry once used the phrase, “Families that camp together, stay together.” It was a clever slogan. Of course you stay together when you’re camping, all cramped together in a tent or camper. But it also reflected the statistic that the divorce rate was lower among families that camped. Spending time together is healthy for a family.
So, we’ve chosen to spend time together, to do things together. That doesn’t mean that we do things exclusively with each other. For instance, our kids spend time at the park or in the backyard with their friends in the neighborhood, Matt volunteers at an after school program, etc. However, doing things together is still a priority.
Therefore, our house is always available for our kids to have friends over. We have a badmitten net and a tether ball in the backyard. (Sometimes the grass gets smashed down, but I remind myself that it’s just grass.) We play games, such as the Great Dalmuti), with our kids and their friends. None of this is rocket science, but it is intentional.
It really doesn’t seem unusual to us; we’re just being a family. That’s what families do — they do things together. It’s one of the blessings of having a family.
But the impression that it makes on others is certainly interesting.