Part of this past week, I attended a conference and wasn’t home for the better part of three days. I knew we were going to need some family time upon my return. Daddy can only do so much filling in for mommy and family-time.
We are all about making memories with the family. So a couple weeks ago, I got tickets to see Disney on Ice through Ticketmaster. We’ve become pretty good at family trips and adventures, and end up doing a lot of them the same way so we end up with good memories at the end of our day. Of course, Disney on Ice helps!
As a family, we have it down to 7 tips that will make us have great family memories (of course, outside variables can’t be accounted for).
1. Be in the moment. (aka Take pictures, but not too many!)
This can mean different things at different times. For us, it usually involves a goofy family selfie picture to start.
We had quite a few moments before the show started (aka we were early), so we livened things up with some more family selfie shots and some individual shots, with my soon-to-be birthday girls and my littles.
(Telling her happy birthday)
(And another Happy Birthday!)
(A reluctant picture with mommy.)
(This one took a while because she was cranky pants…still…memories!)
But, once the show started, we weren’t on our phones, we were with each other, talking quietly about what was going on and pointing to things we were enjoying.
2. Set the tone and expectations.
Get excited about creating new memories. Depending on your clearance level for your children (ours are on a need to know basis), we still talk up doing fun things. The girls also know how we expect them to behave and if they will be allowed to get something or not. With the older two, we also ask them to help out with carrying things or holding tickets, etc. to give them a job.
3. Establish a budget beforehand.
We’ve been on a cash only budget since 2009. We have to budget for things the month before they happen so we don’t have to have an “emergency” budget meeting. It’s imperative that you know what you can spend before heading out. It helps keep stress low, too because there aren’t any fights about buying things…everybody knows the budget. Yes, the kids, too. It helps if you check out Ticketmaster Deals to see all ticket deals in your area, including 2 For 1 Tickets, Me+3 4-Pack Tickets, $40 Below Tickets, and more. Learn More.
Don’t forget to build in that splurge or treat item if you can! We knew we’d want a special treat but didn’t want to pay arena prices, so we stopped on the way and got our ice cream treats.
4. Give yourself plenty of travel time.
Check traffic and events in your area. Make sure you are allowing yourself plenty of time to get there so your family memory of Disney on Ice isn’t running into the show at the intermission and missing most of it because of traffic.
We knew we had a Pride Parade and local NFL game with which to contend, as well as a walk from our parking garage, so we left with plenty of time to spare. Plus, the ice cream!
5. Have an pre- or post-memory activity planned.
On the way to or from a family event or activity, play a little trivia or do some Q&A. It can either help get everybody excited for what is to come, or relives what just happened. We did a fun Trivia for Disney on Ice: 100 Years of Magic Trivia. (Click the link or the image to download the full-sized sheet.)
6. Capture the memory for later.
Make sure you have a way for the memory to be jogged later if necessary. This way, when you look back later, you can remember all of the little parts of the family event. There are some great ways to help you kids capture memories that might help.
7. Be prepared.
I couldn’t not throw in a Disney song, right? But, seriously, do you have gas? A parking plan? A food plan? In addition to helping our budget (see #3) and time with the traffic (#4), we packed lunches and ate them in the car. This saved us a ton of time and money. And the everybody got what they wanted to eat. It was definitely a planning win.
It doesn’t always have to be something big, but it’s nice to have a fun event do go to and make those memories.
How do you help your family make great memories?
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It’s time again for Mommy and Me Monday. Pop out from behind that camera and capture yourself in action with your kids. Check out the inaugural Mommy and Me Monday for more information. Need another reason to participate in Mommy and Me Monday? Read my post about why I blog with words from a friends’ husband.