Every week our family has a Family Home Evening night. It is something asked of us by our Church, and we find that it is a great way to strengthen our family. We generally have a treat and a lesson. For links to other Family Home Evening Lesson Plans, please go here.
This week I wanted to do something fancy. While we catered to my daughter’s girly side, I wanted to cater to my son’s love of all things building and cars….but I was forcing a connection. As I tried to think of all kinds of lessons, I just kept feeling one thing: keep it simple, go back to basics. I was amazed by how I was prompted to get simple…and the lesson soon took a turn to meet the specific needs of my family.
I have all these ideas for upcoming lessons, but they are all complicated concepts. So all week, when I prayed about the lesson, I kept thinking about the SIMPLE concepts. I kept pushing the idea aside, because I wanted to do something fun and fancy. But the concept kept coming back to me over and over again: Heavenly Father. While I went into the lesson thinking it was a simple talk on who He was, little did I know how I would be guided to discuss concepts unique to the needs of my kids.
But first off, dinner!
I used this recipe for Monterey Chicken from All Things Simple. It was pretty good. I’m not going to write our recipe because husband said he wouldn’t request it again, but wouldn’t NOT eat it if I made it.
I used this recipe from Good Life Eats as a basis for my potatoes, but used russets instead of Yukons (because that’s what I had on hand), lemon zest instead of lemon, basil instead of parsley, and monterey jack cheese instead of parmesan. Oh and I microwaved the potatoes first instead of boiling. So really it is a totally different dish! But it was AMAZING. I also added butter
Smashed Potato Recipe
3 Russet Potatoes
1/2 cup cheese
4 basil leaves
1/2 stick butter
Combine everything but the potatoes
Preheat oven to 475
Microwave potatoes for the potato setting
Pull them out, smash with fork
Cover with the mixture
Bake until brown and awesome
Pardon the sideways picture (below). I can’t for the life of me get it to flip without taking a crudload more time! So anyway, I showed the kids this picture and asked them who these people were (their answer: I dunno// the correct answer: Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father). Hmmm, guess that means we really needed this lesson! So we talked about who Heavenly Father is and why he is important.
We talked about what he wanted us to do, to which K replied, “Heavenly Father wants me to go potty on the toilet.” To which J replied, “Yeah, Heffly Fadder wan me go….pooootty.” But we talked about other things he wants.
We talked about how he loves us and wants us to talk with him. I talked about how when I was in Bodega Bay and they missed me and wanted to talk on the phone with me–that is how Heavenly Father feels about us. He wants us to pray to him so he can hear from us because he misses us. We also talked about how he wants to help us.
And then it hit me.
K has been scared this week in her room, and I felt an immediate comfort that this lesson was going to help her.
I talked about how Heavenly Father wants to help us. He wants to comfort us and make us feel better. So when we are scared, we can talk to him.
I have told her to pray all the time when she is scared, and have spent several different occasions praying in her room with her, but I felt like she got it this time. I think by helping her understand that Heavenly Father is a real person, it helped her.
But I am also grateful for my husband who chimed in and reminded them that when they pray, they may not hear an audible answer back, but that the person would feel a comfort.
She got it. I know that doesn’t mean I won’t have my girl in bed with me 60% of my nights because she is scared, but at least tonight when I put the lights out in her room she told me she was going to pray to Heavenly Father (she also said that He will help fix the wall that the mosquito ripped through????).
J also got a lot from it, as he would talk about “Heffly Fadder” a few times.
Then came back and relaxed in the backyard…
While they were running around, Pops turned on the sprinklers and surprised them…they loved it:
Once they were soaking wet from sprinklers, we bundled them up in towels and had them lay in front of our fireplace to warm up (it’s a faux fireplace that is essentially a TV screen of a fire and a space heater). Then they had PJs, snuggles, stories, prayers, and night-night.
What I learned tonight? Family night doesn’t need to be anything fancy. Think about what you want to do, pray about it. and even if the answer to that prayer seems too simple, it might be exactly what your family needs.
I’d love to hear what you did for family night!