Turning Home Maintenance into Family Bonding Activities

Five months ago, we did not have time to bond with our family. We were so busy with school, work, and social activities that we rarely shared dinners anymore. When we were at work, our minds were focused on finishing our tasks, and when we came home, we usually liked to check our emails and social media accounts. Even the dining table was filled with silence while the kids (and parents) chatted on their phones over dinner. Such was the kind of hectic schedules we all forced on ourselves before the coronavirus forced us to stay home most of the time.

Now that you’re staying at home, you can see the many things you have neglected. It’s not only in terms of the time you spend together as a family but the minor things around the house and lawn that need repair. Who knew that there’s a headlight restoration service for your old car? You used to joke around about buying a new car, but with the kind of instability you now experience in your job and business, that’s highly unlikely.

But instead of binge-watching Netflix shows and eating an enormous amount of string cheese, why don’t you turn your family bonding activities into something that will benefit the house? There are a lot of things that need to be done around the house. Years of neglect caused by the whirlwind of activities you’re always engaged in made the house almost unrecognizable to you.

Declutter Together

If you ask your kids to declutter their rooms, they’ll never do it, or they’ll have second thoughts about donating their old Barbie dolls. Do it together instead. You have lots of time in your hands now since you’re virtually stuck at home, so why not tackle one area of the house at a time. You can, for example, start with your bedroom. You have to set an example. Show them that you’re willing to let go of a few things yourself.

Then, move to the next bedroom until you are done with the whole house. Once you have collected the things you don’t need or use, decide whether to donate them or organize a garage sale. If you’ve been furloughed from work, having a garage sale is one way of earning some extra cash. This is also an excellent activity for your kids.

Renovate the Basement

What’s missing in your house? A play area for the kids. Why not turn the basement into their very own sanctuary. You might not be able to do all the structural work. You should call a contractor for that. But once it’s ready for interior detailing, that’s when you and the kids can get to work. Let your kids choose what color they want. Let them color if they’re old enough to do it.

Plan how you want to decorate the new play area. Guide them how they might want it to look, but don’t impose what you want. No one’s going to see this anyway. Who cares if the chairs are mismatched or there’s no real theme in the room? What matters is that your kids will enjoy staying there.

Plant in the Garden

Your kids are not interested in tending to the garden right now. Were you when you were a kid? Gardening has such a calming effect on people. You will do well tending to the garden while your kids can also start their own project. They can build a tent and turn the garden into their private camping site. Of course, this will be done with your help. Since you’re all trying to stay at home, turning your backyard into a camping site or playground is the next best thing to have.

Ask the Kids for Help

Mother and her daughter engaged in gardening in the backyard.

When doing things around the house, learn to ask your kids for help. Whether it’s asking them to hand an item or do something more challenging, they should know that they are needed for household tasks. They have to realize that they must contribute to making your house a home.

Besides, they love the idea of helping you out. Not many parents realize that their kids want to help. It makes them feel needed. When they grow up that way, it’s easier to ask them to run errands even as teenagers who couldn’t be bothered with family matters.

Spending time together doing mundane tasks will help you get to know your kids better. The same goes for your partner. Doing things around the house together will help you get to know them better on a deeper level.

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