We all know that love is an important ingredient in any family, but how do you show love to yourself and your family members amidst all the thousands of things there are to do each day?
Here’s a podcast by April Perry and Allyson Reynolds where we discuss practical ways to create a loving home environment.
- How do we overcome the guilt we feel when we take care of ourselves?
- What are some inexpensive, meaningful ways to let our children know we’re crazy about them?
- What do fairy wings, handball, and playdough have to do with love?
Click HERE to listen to the podcast.
Yesterday I needed to lay down next to my 3 year old until she fell asleep and this podcast was the perfect thing to listen to while I waited. Here are some totally random thoughts about love that I scribbled down while I listened:
*My husband leaves the house before our children wake so he often leaves short notes for them. Sometimes they are as simple as a post-it notes on the kitchen table or he’ll write on toilet paper and hang it in the kitchen entry way. Fun notes in unique places or surfaces are such a great surprise. He even leaves notes for the baby.
*Each night before bedtime, my family has a prayer and then we have a football-like huddle and yell, “1-2-3 Sure Love Ya!” and then everyone hugs everyone. We have been doing this for about 5-6 years and I love it because it only takes a few seconds each night and the payoff is huge.
*I try to remember that my school-age children and husband have been in the “big bad world” all day and I want them to come home and feel loved. I try to accomplish all that needs to be done for the afternoon/evening early on so I’m not a frazzled mess when they get home and have some love left to offer them. This definitely doesn’t always work but there is a great feeling in our home when food and other preparations are completed early.
*I just bought a plate and cup with hearts on them and thought it would be fun to focus on one person each night at the dinner table during the week of Valentine’s Day. They will use the honorary plate/cup and we could talk during dinner about why we love that person. Plan to try it next week.
*When I took my 2nd child in for her two week check-up, my doctor asked me all the regular questions: “How far apart are the slats on the crib?” “Are all chemicals put up high?” And then he asked, “Do you and your husband date each other? Huh? I was shocked that he would ask me that! He told me how critical it was for the health of the entire family that my husband and I were taking time to be with each other. I was also surprised to read much about this in the first Babywise book (I think). Dating my husband is important for us as a couple AND for the kids.
*In a Feb. 2000 speech, Jeffrey Holland explained Plimsoll marks, a line drawn on the hulls of ships. As ships were loaded with cargo, the water level on the side of the ship could not go past the Plimsoll mark or it would likely sink at sea. He said, “Like ships, people have differing capacities at different times and even different days in their lives. In our relationships we need to establish our own Plimsoll marks and help identify them in the lives of those we love. Together we need to monitor the load levels and be helpful in shedding or at least readjusting some cargo if we see our sweetheart is sinking. Then, when the ship of love is stabilized, we can evaluate long-term what has to continue, what can be put off until another time, and what can be put off permanently. Friends, sweethearts, and spouses need to be able to monitor each other’s stress and recognize the different tides and seasons of life. We owe it to each other to declare some limits and then help jettison some things if emotional health and the strength of loving relationships are at risk.” Good stuff.
*My friend calls her kids “Love.” I think it is very endearing and I’m trying to do it too.
*We show our children we love them by disciplining them (lovingly, of course) and helping them conquer tough situations. When my kids ask me why they have to clean their room. I tell them it is because I looove them!