Last year, St. Patrick's Day came and went. I made my traditional soda bread and we had a corned beef dinner. However, the one thing we forgot to do was make leprechaun traps. The kids were disappointed and vowed to remember to make them this year. Well, St. Patrick's Day snuck up on us this time. I did not make my traditional soda bread. We did get corned beef (if the grocery store didn't have it on sale, I would have totally forgotten to get that, too). However, my kids did remember to build their traps! Since I was crazy busy running kids from place to place, Husband did all of the helping with the traps. This was his first year, ever, building a leprechaun trap, which is why they are't all fancy and decorated. I forgot to get pictures of the traps before they were set off, but the kids and Husband did a pretty good job. We need to up our game next year and catch that little sucker since he made a huge mess in my house!
The other night I noticed something about our family. It's something we do all the time. It's something we don't ever even think about while we're doing or after it's done. Yet, it's so important. It's something I hope my kids see when they look back at their childhoods. It's something I rarely remember at my house and Husband doesn't remember it at all at his house. In fact, I can't remember it at any of my friends' houses. Neither can Husband. In this house, we laugh.
Sounds a little crazy, right? Laughing is something people do a lot. But it's rarely something that a whole family does together. Sure, sometimes families laugh while watching TV, but that's not the kind of laughter I mean. I'm talking about the kind of laughter when everyone is enjoying each other. Just because I don't remember a lot of laughter growing up doesn't mean my childhood was sad. My childhood was great. I enjoyed time with my parents. We had a lot of great moments and moments of a lot of laughter. There just wasn't whole family laughter on daily basis. Every day in this house, there is laughter.
The most important thing about recognizing that there is laughter is that it means there is family interaction. I know I've said this before, but our family just doesn't watch a lot of television. It's not that we're against it, it's just that our family finds other ways to be entertained without it. I have written this time and time again, but it's worth saying a multitude of times, my kids are best friends. The reason we have so much laughter in this house is because of their interaction. They use their imaginations together. In this day and age, it's rare to find kids using their imaginations. Everything is already done for them. Yesterday, my kids literally played together the entire day. In fact, at bedtime, Sunshine cried because Monster has karate tonight which means, "I won't be able to play a game with my brother before going to bed!" That's how close these two are.
The laughter in this house always takes me by surprise. Crazy since we do it all the time. Yet, I'm always caught a little off guard. There are days that I'm having just a crappy day. Then my kids come home from school and Husband gets home from work, and laughter is filling the house once again.
We try very hard to make sure we have family time every day. Thursdays are the worst and unusually end up being our toughest days, overall. You can definitely tell the days where we are insanely busy. Everyone is a little crankier and there's no laughter. Days with no laughter make us all crabby and snap at each other. But we recognize those days and we pull out them. We realize that we need family time and we make sure we make time for each other.
I can count on one had the amount of friends that I have that laugh together as a family. It's sad really. "Laughter is the best medicine". In today's society, kids are so over scheduled that it's no wonder families aren't laughing together. Most of the time, families aren't even home together for more than 30 minutes a night! To us, that's crazy. We're busy, but we almost always have time for each other. Maybe it's because we make sure we make each other a priority. Yes, we all need our down time and time away from each other, but the time we spend as a family, laughing and having fun, or even just talking, is so very special. It's what makes us who we are. Enjoying each other is just what we do.