Give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread - Proverbs 30:8

Thursday, May 3, 2012

More Simple Gifts

After I wrote my last post, I realized what a simple gift quiet time can be ~ for my girls, for myself and for my husband.

I then began to think of more simple gifts we can give to those we love and came up with the following:

1. Unstructured play time

There is a time and place for planning what our family/kids need to do each day, but giving them time to just be is a real gift. As a homeschooling mom, I intentionally try to step out of the picture for several hours each day, giving my kids time to be kids. Just yesterday my kids put on a performance they created during their unstructured time. I am so thankful we aren't running here and there from this activity to the next. Kids need time to be kids and I really do feel like this is one of the best gifts I can give them.

2. Less screen time
This goes without saying much. We've got quite a ways to go before we are completely screen-free, but I see such a positive difference on the days when our screen time is minimal. My kids rarely get to use the computer - maybe once a week for 30 minutes. And their television/movie watching is limited to about 1-2 hours a week. Their weakness - playing games on the ipad. I let my husband control this issue and they no longer even ask me if they can play. Since they are around me a lot more than they are around him, it's not that big of a deal.

3. Dinner as a family
We eat dinner together every night. Period. Except for Friday nights....the girls eat together and my husband and I prepare a special meal later. But our girls know this is a special "date night" for mommy and daddy, and they kind of like the routine and rhythm of it all. I'm so glad we've gotten used to this practice.

4. Time alone
As I mentioned in my last post, I'm still reclaiming this idea and practice, but it seems so obvious to me that we all need time alone. When we are alone we can think, process and rest. 


  1. Hi Jill,
    I'm not a mom, but I love your posts. They help me process things and acquire better organization skills. I'm very much a minimalist. Jokingly, my husband says that he needs to make himself useful or else he'll be donated to the Salvation Army Thrift Store. Still, I find that time management isn't my strong suit. I've been ill since 2006 and I don't always have the energy to do things. Things pile up quickly and your posts help me to prioritize.
    Thanks. Be blessed.

    1. Thanks, I appreciate your comment. It's encouraging to me to know that my insights might inspire someone else.

  2. We started Family meal times from when my daughter was a baby, and I am so glad that I did. She is now almost 9 years old, and we come together every evening as a family for a home cooked meal. No tv, radio or electronic devices at the table, and if the phone rings, we let it go to the voicemail and we call back the caller later.
    It is one of our favourite times of the day when the 3 of us come together to enjoy our meal together and connect with each other.