Whether or not you are a Christian and celebrate Sunday as a holy Sabbath day, it can still be so valuable to a family to take it (or perhaps another day is better for your schedule) as a day to rest and regroup as a family. When my daughter was younger we always had a rule (ok, there were exceptions now and then due to very special events but for the most part, it was set in stone) that there had to be one day a week that was unscheduled. There would be no appointments, no running errands, no chores, no homework (and that included marking and lesson planning for me!), no clubs or teams or other organized activities – this was a day on which we could go with the flow!
For us, it worked best to begin our 24 hour period of rest and relaxation the night before – much as our Catholic custom of Sabbath begins on Saturday evening and concludes on Sunday evening. My reason for this was that it gave us Sunday nights to do any last bits of organization or work that needed to be completed before Monday morning without cutting our full day of rest short.
On Saturday evenings, we might go out miniature golfing or bowling or to the movies or something like that. Or we might have a night of board games and fun snacks. It generally was our planned family night for the week (which included our weekly family meeting). Sundays, however, were more freeform. While preparing Saturday dinner, I would also put together something like a breakfast casserole so that Sunday brunch would be as easy as popping it in the oven. Sunday dinner was usually a slow cooker meal – again something I could prep ahead of time so it didn’t take me away from that precious time just hanging out with my daughter.
As for the rest of the day, if we were in an energetic mood, we might go out for a drive in the country, a visit to the beach, or a walk in the woods. If we were tired from a long busy week, we might just snuggle up in my bed together, put on some old movies (Audrey Hepburn movies are our favourites!), and cuddle and giggle the day away. These days were so special to us – if there had been any stress during the week, this quiet bonding time would melt it all away. If our week had been so hectic that it felt like we hadn’t even seen each other, this time would allow us to reconnect.
Even now, whenever my daughter comes home from university, we spend at least one day a week, snuggled up, watching movies (or catching up on something like Top Chef or Project Runway), talking so much that sometimes we have to repeatedly rewind the pvr to catch what we missed, and giggling away! And while she is away, I still make sure to take a day of rest and quiet for myself each week too. This time is always a sure way to recharge my body and mind, gain a new perspective, and make some wonderful new plans!
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