Connecting with your children is not always as easy as it sounds. We spend so much time planning activities and fun experiences for our kids that sometimes we forget to include ourselves. Now that things in the world have slowed down, it is a great time to reconnect. The following ideas for family bonding are great opportunities to ignite conversations, too. Talk while you paint, reminisce while you hike, and laugh while you watch silly movies.

Plan a Family Hike

You don’t have to strap on expensive hiking boots and spend hours on a remote mountain path to enjoy a “hike.” Hiking with your family can be as simple as following a straightforward trail at a local park, or exploring a nature trail at one of the many free locations in your state. Pack a lunch, some binoculars, and maybe even some fun nature gear to use during your family adventure.

Gear Up for Game Night

One of the most traditional ways to enjoy time with your kids is a family game night! Toy Insider Parent Darcy Zalewski has tons of suggestions for family board games, travel games, card games, and so much more! Game Night is an excellent excuse to turn off your phones and devices to focus on the fun at hand.

Compete in a Family Bake-Off

Cooking might not sound like a fun family option, but pick out some simple recipes and see who can bake it better! Younger kids who aren’t ready to cook or bake on their own yet can work in teams or assist with easier tasks, like decorating cupcakes. Make it a monthly event with fun baking subscription services like Kidstir Cooking Kits. The best part is that you can do a family dinner or dessert table and eat your creations together!

Paint Kindness Rocks

Simple crafts are a fun way to earn family bonding time. One good open-ended craft idea is painting rocks, which is also inexpensive and creative. You can use them to spread a little cheer, too! Create some kindness rocks as a family and then hide them in your local parks or your neighborhood.

Magical Movie Night

It’s OK if the time we spend together isn’t extravagant. Sometimes the most simple moments are the most treasured ones. Plan a magical movie night with snacks, popcorn, or easy treats. Take turns picking favorite movies or draw surprise movie titles from a hat. Not sure what to choose? How about a themed movie night? Pick a classic from the 1980s or a musical that you haven’t seen. Think outside the box with Christmas or holiday-themed movies, too!

No matter how you choose to spend time with your kids, it’s always special. If planning game nights and themed activities don’t work for your family, keep it simple and just take a walk in your neighborhood together! Time we enjoy together is never time wasted.