Rainy Family Nights In

This post is sponsored by Bona but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

Let's talk about the post-nap (or post-school) time. The "before dinner," the "after dinner"...that time frame. It might not be enough time to go out and do something fun because dinner and the bedtime routine have to fit in there. WHAT DO YOU DO. That is what I'm normally wondering.

The other night, we had a really chill evening all together that wasn't a stressful "is it bedtime YET" kind of night. We couldn't go in our yard or to a park because it was straight up pouring outside, and we had some time after naptime before dinner, and then after dinner before bedtime. So what did we do? What helped the night be enjoyable? What can you do in those gaps of time to help keep the total mayhem at bay? (Spoiler alert: it's THIS!)

What makes an afternoon/evening in more fun: 

  1. Turn on those upbeat jams. (Do people still call music jams? I'm old, let's move on.) I told our Amazon echo dot "play today's top country" and it came up with a pretty good list! If country's not your thing, try "favorite alternative music," or, if you're my kids on any given day, "ALEXA PLAY THE FROZEN SOUNDTRACK."

  2. Put your phone down. Admittedly, I snapped a few quick photos of the family and we took a fun Boomerang (see it on Instagram!) because the kids were being so cute. But after that, we totally ignored all. the. screens. 

  3. Make cleaning your floors quick and fun with Bona. We love our Bona Quick Clean System because we switch out the velcro-attachable dry dusting pads with their 3D fibers for the streak-free wet mop pads that are infused with Bona cleaner. I'm not even joking--my kids got COMPETITIVE about taking turns with the Bona mop and before we could even adjust the handle to their height, they were off and mopping. I mean, of course it's valuable to teach 3-year-old Aiden that cleaning is important. But without even saying anything about that, both Aiden and Emma wanted turns pushing the mop around, easily locking in the dirt and dog fur that are ALWAYS on our floors. We rolled up our living room carpet because Emma is still not reliably potty-trained (you can see her living room potty next to the couch, how's THAT for real life?! haha!), which meant there was lots more floor to clean. And we all pitched in, danced around, and made clean floors happen in less than 10 minutes. 

  4. Enjoy those clean floors! Hello, 23-week pregnant me usually chooses the couch to sit on when I'm around my kids. Or a dining room chair. Or any chair. But it was fun to Aiden and Emma to see Devin and I mix it up and sit on the (freshly mopped!) floors with them. 

  5. Pull out a rarely-used toy or game. You know your kids have some toy that they forgot even existed. For us, it's our bin of puzzles. The kids hadn't done a puzzle in weeks, so it was fun for Devin and I to help them figure out how to get all the pieces together. 

  6. Lazy dinner night. Cooking dinner is not my favorite thing, so to make our rainy night in a little more special, we got pizza. (Pro tip, move to a new house so that all the local pizza shops send you coupons & vouchers for free pizza. 😉)

  7. Be generous with the compliments. Is it just me, or does parenting feel like lots of correcting? Of course, I still had to give clear direction and reprimands when Aiden and Emma literally argued about whose turn it was to use the Bona mop. But overall, I tried to find encouraging statements to make (something I should do more often!!!). "Aiden, you did a great job noticing the outside edge of that puzzle piece! Emma, that was so kind of you to pass Aiden a puzzle piece!" Etc. etc. 


What are some of your favorite things to do on nights spent at home? Check out Bona for more floor-cleaning inspiration!

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