Back when my older son was really little, my husband and I realized just how precious our Saturdays were.  The weekdays were filled with work and meetings, appointments and chores.  Sundays were spent at church and with family.  Saturday was essentially our only day together, just us.  So, we instituted Special Saturdays.  It is our one day each week to plan (or in some cases) not plan anything…well…special.

We typically start our Saturdays with a pajama party, complete with pancakes and bacon.  In recent years, we’ve turned to more of the IHOP style of pancaking – whipped cream, flavored syrups, and pancakes the size of the plate.  Cold, wintery mornings bring out our hot chocolate stash, and in the summertime we make a buffet of fresh fruits and smoothies.  Sometimes, we pull out leftover birthday plates and cups to give it a festive flair, and on occasion we even drag out the good china and drink milk and juice from crystal goblets.

Saturdays are our time to spend together.  We may go to the local children’s museum or zoo, maybe we’ll paint some pottery or swing at the city park.  Or, perhaps we all get out in the back yard and work in the flower beds, planting new landscaping and making bird treats to hang in the trees.  We have an occasional movie day, popping popcorn and stretching out on the sofa to watch our favorite flick or loading up the car to catch the latest on the silver screen.

In recent times, we’ve found ourselves with commitments that crop up into “our” day – sporting events, birthday parties, cub scout outings.  And, those are okay, too.  We try, for the most part, to still do them as a family, and even if we still have to lose part of our day to “outside forces”, we make it a point to put aside the rest of the day for just us.

Spending quality time together as a family is the core to a healthy family relationship.  What are some traditions or ideas you and your children have?