It’s going to be a very different spring for everyone this year, following advice to ‘stay home and save lives.’ While you might not be heading to the beach or vacationing on your spring break, you can still enjoy spending time with your family.
Focusing on keeping your family safe and well is more important now than ever. There are plenty of things you can do to enjoy spring within your home, and make some fantastic memories too.
Take a look at the following tips for keeping your family happy and healthy this spring.
Create a routine
Being at home week after week can soon lead to boredom, as well as feeling a bit displaced. It’s vital that you create a routine for your family at this time to make sure everyone feels more settled, and keeps a sense of normality around your home. Maintaining set wake-up and work/school times will help everyone to adjust quickly, giving some structure to your day.
Some of the ways you can create an effective family routine while homebound include creating a schedule. Put it somewhere you can all refer to it and remember to include some fun stuff on it too.
It’s not often the whole family gets to eat together, so why not take advantage during this time? Dining outside as a family for breakfast, lunch and dinner will minimize distractions such as the TV, and can help you enjoy some vitamin D throughout the day. With the weather warming up, it’s a good excuse for you to all get out and soak up some sun, helping to elevate your moods and make the days a little extra special.
Take a look at some spring recipe ideas to give you some inspiration for al fresco dining.
Exercise as a family
Exercise is important all-year-round, but when you can’t go to the gym, the park or the pool, your options are going to be limited. Working out as a family will be a great way for you all to stay motivated, making sure that you keep fit and get those much-needed endorphins. Why not set up a circuits class in your backyard to keep things fun and interesting?
Stuck for some space? Why not follow some online workout videos or try some of these fun ways to keep kids active indoors?
Take care of your skin
While you’re at home, you’ll want to make the most of your outdoor space to be able to enjoy some fresh air, a change of scenery and soak up the sun. But just because you’re at home, doesn’t mean you can neglect your typical protection against the sun. Make sure you have plenty of safe sunscreen to keep all of your family protected from the sun. Choosing the right SPF will ensure your skin is protected from UV and UVA rays, keeping you safe while also preventing the signs of ageing in mom and dad. Apply liberally every day for effective protection.
Make sure everyone gets enough sleep
A change to your routine can have a big impact on your sleep pattern. When you haven’t got school or work to get up and ready for, bedtimes can start to get later, and it can be harder to wake up in the morning. It’s important that you keep bedtime routines as normal as possible during this time, so aim to go to bed at the same time, or even earlier, than you normally would.
Some tips for healthier sleep include avoiding caffeine late at night, putting electronic devices away an hour before you go to sleep and getting enough sunlight. With the whole family able to get some much-needed rest, you’ll all stay energized and healthy.
Cook healthy dishes as a family
Dining out is off the menu for the time being, so unless you plan on ordering takeout every night for the weeks ahead, you’re going to need to start cooking more at home. It’s the perfect opportunity for you to start eating healthier as a family, and teach your kids some valuable cooking skills that will benefit them for the rest of their lives.
Make an effort to cook dinner each night as a family. It will be a fantastic way for you all to unwind after a day full of activities, and makes sure that everyone pitches in.
Turn your backyard into a family project
Doing something fun as a family is a good way to pass the time, as well as make the most of your time at home. Why not do some work on your backyard this spring and give it a makeover? You could start growing some flowers, or even create a vegetable patch to enjoy your own veggies! Having everyone working together will help you all learn new skills and enjoy doing something collectively that will have a result you can all enjoy at the end.
Always supervise your children around tools and chemicals - start by giving them some of the simpler tasks to help them develop some good skills before they take on more advanced work.
Create a space for work
At this time, work will most likely continue for you in your home. And your kids will need to continue their studies and complete homework. To help this happen, you’ll need to create some quiet spaces suitable for work. You could set up a home office or make the most of your kitchen table to make sure everyone has plenty of space to work.
Working from home isn’t ideal for many people, but if you make your work area quiet and distraction-free, then you will be able to make it work. Remember to take screen breaks regularly, as you would in the office, and consider getting up earlier in the mornings so that you can start work early and finish a little earlier to get out and enjoy the sun.
Keep your home clean
Keeping your home clean is incredibly important right now. Using disinfectant regularly, you’ll need to make sure that you wipe surfaces, clean areas you use to prepare food and do laundry regularly to help prevent the spread of infection.
Doing small tasks each day will make it easier to manage your cleaning schedule, and make it easier to disinfect your home regularly to keep things clean and sanitary.
Take plenty of photos
While you might feel like this is a period you want to forget, it’s important that you celebrate this precious time with family. Take plenty of photos of your family enjoying yourselves. When things go back to normal and you’re all living busy lives again, these precious moments at home will be rarer. It will be nice for you to look back at the different memories you made during this time.
Ask how everyone is doing
Even though you’ll be in each other’s company all of the time, you might not always understand how someone is feeling. It is a difficult time for everyone right now, but it’s important that you check-in and have frank conversations with members of your family to see how they’re coping and whether or not there’s something on their mind.
It’s also important that you take care of your own mental health at this time. Talking about your feelings, staying in touch with family and friends, and finding ways to ease stress and anxiety will go a long way at this time. Having open and honest conversations with each other will make sure everyone gets the support they need to help them through what is likely to be a stressful and difficult time.
Make family movie night a regular thing
Sitting down to watch a movie together is a great way to enjoy family time. And while you’re all at home, you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy many movies together.
With so many subscription services available, you’ll probably have already invested in several of them. These can be a useful tool for discovering new films, or you can select from some of the greatest movies of all time to help you decide what to watch. Mix in some classic movies with some newer ones to make sure there’s something for everyone, helping everyone to get excited about family movie night.
Staying at home for a long period of time can be a frightening prospect for many people, especially if you’re a family who like to go out and do different things. But for the sake of your health, and others around you, you need to go home.
Keeping your family happy and healthy should be your priority at this time, so you’ll need to find ways to boost everyone’s health and keep fit. Building a routine is a great start, and everything else will be sure to fall into place. It’s a tough time for everyone right now, but it’s important that you enjoy this opportunity to spend quality time with your family.
CANDY TAI is a wife to David and mom of 5 with a degree in Communications. She's a native Texan (Hook 'Em Horns!) who's been making her home in the Kansas City metro area for nearly 15 years. She loves being able to shuffle her kids from their various sports activities, piano lessons, and school activities. She enjoys fashion, beauty, reality TV, and moviegoing.