Dear Mr. Dad: I hear people talking about how important it is to spend “quality time” with the family. I’ve got a couple of teenagers and a precocious 12-year old and it’s practically impossible to find an activity that everyone in the family will enjoy. Plus, with two adults and three children all on different schedules, it’s even more impossible to find a time when we’re all in the same place at the same time. Do you have any suggestions?
One of the great ironies of modern life is that smartphones and other devices that are supposed to save us time and effort and keep us connected, actually eat up even more time and disconnect us from each other. The fact that you’re craving quality time with your family is great, and we’ll get to what that looks like in a minute. However, you first need to get the rest of your family on board. With your hectic schedules, having a leisurely family dinner every night isn’t in the cards. But there are 168 hours in a week, and making a family commitment to spend even one or two of them together is really important. Here are some ideas.