Special occasions and the festive season are great excuses for family get-togethers.
But why wait until you have an excuse to organise something? Planning regular events is a great way to bring your family together to create memories and strengthen bonds. Whether you want to go all out and organise a fancy affair or you want to keep things casual and low key, here are a few ways that you can get your family together.
A ‘My Kitchen Rules’ Challenge
This is a fun way to set up regular dinner get togethers while spreading the load so that everyone has a turn at hosting. If you haven’t seen the TV show, basically the premise is to turn your home into a restaurant for an evening to host your guests, while they provide feedback and ratings on your cooking performance! While you could still do this without the competitive element, a little family rivalry will certainly get everyone motivated to impress! It is also a great way to mix things up a bit – you can throw in themes, so one night could be a formal affair with dresses and suits, or a Bollywood night, or a Mexican fiesta – you get the idea! Run the challenge over a series of weeks or months, so that you can lock in regular get-togethers.
It’s common to celebrate birthdays with our families, but less so to take the time to celebrate anniversaries. While it’s a special occasion for the couple themselves, it’s also a nice time to once again celebrate the joining of two families. It’s important to acknowledge each other in a relationship, but of course there are many people who play an important part in that relationship too. Use this as a happy excuse to get together with family and loved ones, pull out the partywear and relive the memories of the day that two families became one!
Start a restaurant club
Challenge the family to try a new restaurant every month. Every one can take a turn at picking a new spot to try – whether it’s a budget bite or indulgent dining. It will create a fun opportunity to get out together as a family, while also adding a fun social element by trying new places and tastes. You could decide to eat your way around the globe – without even leaving your own town, by picking a different ethnic food each month – Italian, Indian, Malaysian, Vietnamese… the list goes on!
Pot luck dinner
While no one can ever beat mum’s cooking, it’s nice to have a night off from taking care of everything! Invite the family round for a delicious home-cooked meal, but ask everyone to come along with a plate of something they’ve made themselves to contribute to the table. Either let everyone come up with their own idea, or provide a bit of direction by assigning some to snacks, others to the main, and the rest to dessert. It’s a perfect way to get together over the winter months when you’d rather stay in for a hearty home-cooked dinner.
Picnics at the park
Picnics are great because they can be enjoyed by the whole family, no matter what age! The kids or grandkids get to have a run around and play with each other, while everyone else can sit back, eat some great food, have a wine and enjoy a relaxing time together. Many parks have public barbecues that are available to use, or just pack up the chilly bins with some simple dishes to share. Add in some fun family challenges or games, like cricket or soccer to get everyone having a great time.
Our lives are jam-packed with activities and responsibilities, but it’s important to always make time for those who are most important to us. Don’t leave it to just special occasions to bring your family together. Try different activities and outings to encourage more precious family time – you’ll create incredible memories and an enduring legacy as matriarch of your family.