In our family, some of the things that we’ve found that our kids enjoy the most are sharing good food, spending quality time together, and watching movies. However, something else that we’ve realized is that our kids love is when we do things spontaneously that are out of the ordinary. We surprise kids.
One of our kids recently said these words, “I love it when we do things together that are unexpected.” And so, we try to incorporate some of those unexpected, yet meaningful things into our family life. Sometimes this may be a surprise trip into town for the night, or this may simply be taking one of our family theme nights and giving it a special twist.
There are things that your kids love about your family life too. One of those things is when you do meaningful things for them or with them that are out of the ordinary. Here are a few ideas to consider trying this week to surprise your kids:
Surprise kids by writing them an encouraging letter and mailing it to them.
Kids love to receive mail, because in the mind of a child, mail is an “adult” thing. And when they receive mail that’s specifically addressed to them containing encouraging content, it can be very meaningful. Maybe even consider writing this letter anonymously. They definitely will not be expecting it, but I guarantee you that they will remember it.
Surprise kids by taking something routine and making it special.
If your family is going to have an ice cream night this week, turn it into a “family ice cream contest”. Have different members of the family responsible for making someone else’s ice cream sundae with all the fixings and present it to them. Maybe even vote on whose is the best. Or, if it’s family movie night, use a little creativity and turn it into “family fort movie madness”. Build homemade forts out of pillows and blankets and turn your routine movie into a lasting memory. You get the idea, just use your imagination and have fun.
Surprise kids by giving something away, just because.
Whether this is done as a home declutter project, or simply giving away things you’d have otherwise sold, find ways to encourage your child to give something valuable away for free to someone else. Maybe allow them to pick 3 toys they haven’t played with in the last month. Or rather than contributing items to a garage sale, donate them to goodwill or a friend who would be excited to receive them. Maybe encourage them to find ways to earn some extra money, then explore creative ways to give it all away to help others.
Surprise kids by committing one hour of your time to each child this week.
Let your child know a few days in advance that they get to decide what you do, or where you go during this special hour, and you get to go all-in with their plan (this makes it so much more special than just randomly spending time together). They may simply want your undivided attention to to play their favorite board game or one-on-one basketball in the driveway. But if they have a few days to decide, they’re sure to have some great ideas. This can either be a free no-cost hour or you can give them a budget, your choice. Either way, your child will love being the sole focus of your attention.
Surprise kids by praying a blessing over each child.
Prayer is powerful. And parents should regularly pray for their children and with their children. However, something special can happen when a parent intentionally prays over their child, pulling them close, and getting very specific about asking for divine protection and blessing upon their life. There is nothing wrong with bragging on your child to God, and speaking life into your child through prayer. In fact, there is everything right about it.
Which of these 5 meaningful ideas should you try with your kids this week?
This article about ways to surprise kids originally appeared here.