Monday, February 10, 2014 was the very first Family Day here in British Columbia. I really wanted this day to be something I could plan and everyone could enjoy. With everyone so busy I didn’t want to add to their plates by saying “Entertain Me!” I wanted everyone to just show up and have a good time. You may think that has nothing to do with laneway living, but actually it fit in perfectly with our new way of life.
1. It’s all about “Experience”
We won’t be buying much new stuff. And for everything we bring into the laneway, we have to take something out . Instead of stuff, we want to spend our time and energy on having new experiences. And that means
2. Getting Out of the House
In the past I may have been tempted to just make a nice dinner and have our family (two kids, two kids-in-law, one grandchild) over and then we would sit around and eat and then everyone would get up and go. But we don’t have room for that anymore, and though we will certainly be sharing lots of communal meals, the small size of our place means that if we are planning an event we will need to be outside of the laneway. That could mean out in the back yard at a barbecue, but in the winter it usually means inside somewhere else (the weather is so iffy, it was supposed to snow but instead it rained buckets).
3. Finding Family Things to Do
The fact that it was Family Day gave me a bit of a kick in the pants. I haven’t thought much about entertaining children (well, child) for a while. Plus I wanted something everyone would enjoy, so it had to be more than visiting McDonald’s or dragging the little darling around Science World (she’s a bit young to take it all in). I just poked around the internet and found Family Day activities at Burnaby Village Museum. The museum would be closed, but the Carousel would still be open, and they would have fun things for little kids. It’s close to everyone, and not too expensive. We started off with brunch at a restaurant, then went straight to the museum, and “Carousel, Carousel!” (Only not in that Logan’s Run way).
I admit that I like sitting and watching Disney movies with the little girl on the TV or computer. But for this I wanted a more….analog experience. Going out and doing real things in the real “meat world”. Touching and holding hands and walking and playing with plastic frogs. Riding a real carousel horse (twice).
5. Building memories
It doesn’t take too many family dinners until the memories all melt together. Especially since we usually do the same dishes for special occasions. And that’s good. It’s so nice to look back on all those Christmas dinners at Grandma’s and the Angel Food cake your Mom always made for your birthdays.
For this Family Day I thought I would be building memories for the little girl — her first ride on a real carousel. But of course, I was really building memories for myself.
This memory especially