I’m categorizing this post under the ‘About Me‘ category because I’m sharing with you how I really feel about something that isn’t decorating or DIY, but about myself and our family. Spending time being screen free!
I find that in this day and age with smart phones, tablets, laptops and all sorts of electronics at our fingertips, there is also this sort of silent hum of stress and distraction streaming from them to us.
To spend time without the electronics can be a battle inside of me between feeling crippled and being free. But what’s the cost of all those electronics constantly at our fingertips? Unfortunately, I think unwinding and bonding time with our family takes a pretty big hit.
So that’s why I was pleasantly surprised to find out recently that there are others that recognize and have actually organized a ‘Screen Free Week’. I think it’s meant to encourage people to put down the electronics once in a while and enjoy life and each other. Screen Free Week this year is May 2-8! Have you even ever heard of Screen Free Week? Here’s my take on it…
Screen free… Wow! I really think that is sort of key in truly unwinding though, but so hard to do, isn’t it? I can get so tied to my smart phone, keeping up on blog stuff, Facebook, Pinterest, texts, emails… there’s no end to it… and before I realize it, minutes have turned into hours, I’ve barely spoken to my husband, and it’s time for bed.
I recently read a study saying that to get a good night’s sleep it’s important to not be on a screen for a while before you’re planning to go to sleep, because it helps your brain start to rest… more proof to me that there is some sort of stimulation from the screens going on deep in our brains that we’re maybe not even consciously aware of.
So here’s the deal, I think, for me at least, there has to be a balance… obviously there must be time to have designated for screens. I mean, come on, I write a blog, I have to spend a lot of time on the computer, both writing, researching, keeping up on emails and trying to keep up on the social media promoting my blog. (that part can feel like a never ending task) I also think it’s OK to have time for the mild distraction of screens, not counting the actual work time.
But, and that’s a big ‘BUT’… I think there must be a time when the screens are off. The phones are set away from us, and our minds can settle.
For my husband’s birthday, our son and daughter-in-law gave him a Qwirkle Board Game .
This is a new game for us, and we are loving it. It’s so much fun! It’s because of how much enjoyment we’re having playing Qwirkle that I wanted to share it with you. It’s been a great way for us to spend time together, screen free.
The game is pretty simple, it comes with thick wooden tiles and a muslin bag to store and pull them from during play.
In a nutshell, I’d describe it like the game of Scrabble, but instead of creating and connecting words, you create and connect patterns. It’s super easy to play, yet challenging enough to hold our interest. Much faster paced than Scrabble tends to be.
Three of our grandkids have enjoyed playing with us too. They’re aged between 11 and 5 and do pretty well. (I usually give some assistance to the 5 year old, but he can surprise me with the patterns he can make on his own!)
As you build the gameboard with each move, it almost resembles an Amish quilt.
This game has really been such an enjoyment for us lately. I love that when we sit around the table and play a game together, conversation just easily unfolds. Game playing really is a great way to create some fun bonding time.
Our 11 year old granddaughter, who up until now, hadn’t played too many games with her grandfather, was pleasantly amused with all the songs and lyrics he invented during the game. She hadn’t seen that side of him before. That’s what I’m talking about! Set the electronics down, and really relax together!
So what about you? Have you spent time screen free, just playing a game together? If your games seem a bit stale, I’d encourage you to checkout Qwirkle. It really is fun, both my husband and I like playing it, and with our very different personalities and preferences, it is sort of a rarity to like the same thing.
Here is the website for ‘Screen Free Week’ that I stumbled upon.
And here’s the link for the Qwirkle Board Game if you’re interested in getting one for yourself. I hope I’ve encouraged you to recognize the need we have to take some time to be screen free once in a while to unwind, and create fun family bonding times together.
Yes, please share, but after you’re done sharing this, don’t be afraid to turn off the screens and relax too. 😉
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