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21 Ways to Slow Down: Activities for the Whole Family

As a mom, coordinating my family of five’s schedules was a project that required color coding, multiple lists, and a healthy sense of humor—especially when plans were changed or delayed at the last minute. I took an inordinate measure of pride at the end of a weekend when we actually accomplished Mission Impossible and got everyone where they needed to go.

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My reward? The opportunity to do it all over again the following week, because, as we all know, parenting never stops. And while I loved that my kids were happily busy, I also treasured our downtime together.

On those rare evenings, quiet mornings, or afternoons when we would find ourselves without some place to be, we’d hunker down as a family. We would all change into our pajamas, build a fire and enjoy some very memorable movies and intense games of Monopoly or Battleship. Those quiet hours together replenished all of us.

It is in that spirit that we at Your Teen humbly offer our list of suggestions for slowing down and enjoying the quiet moments—and each other.

Family Activities

That’s entertainment

  • Binge watch a great show together
  • Break out the board games or play your kids’ favorite video games
  • Watch a sporting event and cheer for your favorite team
  • Watch your go-to movie again

Get crafty together

  • Knit (or learn to knit) together
  • Work a jigsaw puzzle as a family
  • Break out the coloring books, crayons, colored pencils and markers
  • Choose a craft or home improvement project to work on together

Be silly together

  • Two words: family karaoke
  • Have a family dance party
  • Build a pillow fort

Food for thought

  • Enjoy dinner by candlelight—even if it’s pizza
  • Make hot chocolate (don’t forget the cookies!)
  • Make and enjoy fondue together

Just relax

  • Unplug from social media (and hold each other accountable)
  • Do some family yoga or meditation
  • Snuggle up for a family nap
  • Read together
  • Pamper yourselves with a DIY family spa night
  • Take a family walk (and bring the dog along)
  • Blow off chores (unless you’re up for some therapeutic purging)

There’s something to be said for taking a breather, slowing down, and enjoying the simple pleasures of family life.

Jody Podl

Jody has spent her life around teens, as a teacher and as a parent of three.