What Do We Do As a Family?

family funDear 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.
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Mr. Dad and GreatDad.com Salute Fathers and Families with This Spring’s ‘Seal of Approval’ Picks

Super Mario Brothers for Wii, “Checklists for the New Dad,” and Faces iMake, among Father’s Day 2010 GreatDad Recommends Award and Mr. Dad Seal of Approval Recipients

San Francisco, Calif. (PRWEB) June 5, 2010 — Fun-loving fathers and families seeking ideas for Father’s Day activities this year are in for a real treat. Presented by Mr. Dad and GreatDad.com, the results of the Fathers Day 2010 GreatDad Recommends and Mr.Dad Seal of Approval awards are in. They include an exciting lineup of games, toys and resources that will involve dads and kids, and make spending time together even more exciting and memorable. [Read more…]

Date Nights and Choreplay

Dear Mr. Dad: My son turned one a few weeks ago and it’s been months since my wife and I have had even an hour to ourselves. She makes abstract plans (“We’ll do something this weekend”) but they never happen—she always comes up with some kind of excuse. I’ve complained, but that just upsets her. I’m trying to be understanding but I’m getting more and more frustrated. Help!

A. When you have a baby, going out for even a few hours can take a serious amount of planning. Theoretically, as your baby gets older, it should get easier and easier to get away, not harder, so I understand your frustration. That said, let’s try to figure out what’s really upsetting you. The big question is: what is it that you miss—simply going out or spending time alone with your wife? There’s a subtle but very important distinction.
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