This morning, I was listening to a husband and wife doing a Facebook Live. They were out celebrating their 10th anniversary and were sharing tips on how to have a successful marriage.
Something they said inspired me to write this post. It was about being intentional in making memories. I had never thought about memories being “intentional” before. Didn’t memories just happen?
We create memories whether we are intentional or not, don’t we? But what memories are we making?
If we think about our own memories (the good ones), they came from someone making an effort.
Think about it. A marriage proposal, a vacation, birth of a child.
Wonderful memories are created and don’t happen completely by chance!
Wouldn’t it be great if we could give our children as many good memories as possible? I mean, wouldn’t it be great to make wonderful memories with our children, ones that they can cherish for years to come?
It doesn’t have to be elaborate, expensive, or time-consuming to make lasting impressions.
Based on The 5 love languages
Someone introduced me to “The 5 Love Languages” years ago. A man named Gary Chapman has written several books about the five love languages.
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They are all based on the concept that every human being speaks through their love language. Every person has a love language that is more dominant than the others.
Being spoken to in our dominant love language is what fills our love tank. When we show others love in their love language, they react positively and feel even more loved.
With children, it can be difficult to figure out what their main love language is, so it is recommended that we speak to them in all of the five love languages.
If we are intentional, we can create positive memories while filling our childrens’ love tanks. The 5 Love Languages are as follows:
1. Words of affirmation
When a child’s love language is words of affirmation, they like to hear about how much they are loved. You can make positive memories by leaving them a note or writing them a heartfelt letter.
If you are musically inclined, you could write your child a song. I asked my daughter for some thoughts on this and she reminded me that I had once written her a poem.
Another fun thing to do would be to learn how to say, “I love you” in several different languages, including sign language.
2. Acts of service
Acts of service is my dominant love language. I love making things for my children, especially quilts and clothing or a cup of hot chocolate after they come in from playing in the snow.
Maybe you are the mom that throws amazing themed birthday parties or makes slime and playdough for your children to enjoy.
Perhaps you could bake your kids cookies or help them tidy their room. I have a friend who makes each of her children breakfast in bed on their birthday. The dad even dressed up in a costume to deliver the tray!
3. Receiving gifts
When a child loves a gift we have given them, it warms our hearts. But as a parent, we can feel like we might be spoiling them if we give them too many presents.
Gifts don’t always have to cost a lot of money though. Some cheap gifts could be sidewalk chalk, bubble solution, water balloons, a jumping rope, or even a carrot for the snowman they just built.
When we give a gift, we can enjoy it with them. Blow some bubbles, draw on the sidewalk, or have a water balloon fight.
You can get creative with gift-giving and give some scrap lumber and build a birdhouse or give them some old clothes to play dress up in.
You could give them a new book and read it to them. The sky is the limit with this one.
4. Quality time
If quality time is the dominant love language in your child, you need to be intentional about actually spending time together.
Over time, you will notice what your child truly enjoys. They may be particularly interested in going for nature walks, bike rides, or going on a scavenger hunt with you.
They may also simply enjoy watching a movie together or looking through photo albums of their baby pictures while sitting on your lap.
For your child, it might be to go somewhere alone with you or your spouse on a special date.
5. Physical touch
Physical touch can speak to your child through cuddles or holding hands. Some memory-making ideas could be having tickle fights, dancing together, or giving your child a massage.
Some kids connect by you brushing or styling their hair or by painting their fingernails and toenails.
Maybe your child is fond of playing tag or rounding up some kids for a game of touch football. These kids usually like high fives and fist bumps.
There are literally hundreds of ways of making memories. As parents, we often get caught up in the business of the day. We have our checklists, piles of laundry, meals to prepare, and this is on top of teaching our children all of their homeschool lessons. Being intentional can be lost in all of our duties.
But as home school parents, we have a special privilege. We are home with our children every day.
Creating a life that you love and being intentional is something I intend on sharing more about.