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Fun with the Family - Julie Lavender
Celebrate family and make memories in these uncertain times
Julie Lavender

With uncharted waters we’re treading these days, families are in even greater need to find something to celebrate each day. Little or big, find much to celebrate in the month of April to bring adventure, fun, and memory-making into the life of your family.

Things are different, yes, but family fun doesn’t have to change. Enjoy the beauty of spring with lots of family walks and create some unique family holidays to accompany the silly ones below. Make it an awesome April for those you love!

 World Wish Day — Make wishes throughout the month— silly ones, like, chocolate for breakfast and serious ones, like, an end to diseases and viruses. Brainstorm individual wishes and family ones over dinner one evening, and then pray over family and community concerns and wishes. Then read some of these fun wish books: 'Marien’s Wish' by Cinthia Wild, 'Wish' by Emma Dodd, and 'I Wish You More' by Amy Krouse Rosenthal.

 Save the Frogs Day — Take a family walk in the evening and listen for the croaks and calls of frogs and toads. See if you can spot any near the water’s edge or hopping around in the grass. Keep a tally of the ones you see this month and take a cell phone picture of some of them to compare species.

 Pigs in a Blanket Day — Gather in the kitchen to make a fun recipe. Unroll crescent roll dough and cut each triangle into four strips. Wrap each strip around one small sausage link such that most of the link is covered. Bush the top of the dough with butter. Season with a sprinkle of garlic salt and sprinkle of grated parmesan cheese.

Bake at 375 degrees for about 12 minutes, until golden brown. Prepare a dip by stirring a bit of honey into yellow mustard.

 World Marbles Day — (Play this game with older kids who can safely play with marbles.) Use painter’s tape to make several X’s on an area of the den floor. Write numbers one through five on each one. Take turns rolling marbles towards the X’s.

Each player rolls five marbles, one at a time.

Wherever each marble lands, tally the points listed on the closest X. Let each person have a turn and add up all the points at the end of the game to find a winner.

 National Dandelion Day — Keep your eyes open for dandelion flowers and dandelion puffballs.

Celebrate the day, along with wish day from above, and pick a few dandelions for wishes! Then, have a dandelion craft day. Use a sheet of construction paper for the background.

Dip a plastic fork in yellow paint and make prints in a circle, like the petals of the dandelion flower.

When the yellow paint is dry, dip the fork in orange paint and make just a few prints in the circle to add color. Once the orange paint dries, use a marker to add a stem. Then, on the same page, make a dandelion puffball by making white paint fingerprints in a flower shape.

Then use a marker to add a stem to that dandelion, too.

Even in difficult times, families have much to celebrate. Take time each day to enjoy your greatest treasure — your family — and find special ways to celebrate that gift. Enjoy sunny days, blossoms and buds of every color, fresh green grass, and new life springing forth. Celebrate an empty tomb and give thanks for each new day.

Hold your family tight and weather the challenges together. Until next month …

Julie Lavender, author of the forthcoming '365 Ways to Love Your Child: Turning Little Moments into Lasting Memories' (Revell, October 2020), enjoys encouraging families to find ways each day to make a memory.



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