Gunning it believes that engaging in new experiences together helps build relationships within the family and strengthens the overall family unit. Most times, new experiences result from leaving home and finding new places to see, observing new cultures, trying new activities and tasting new foods. New experiences are a contrast to the daily routine and for many families, our daily routine revolves around the family home. Our homes personify routine and if we're fortunate, provide a lighthouse of sorts in the storm that is our daily schedule. There are times though when a home is at the center of a new experience for the family.. for the Gunn clan, this was Hurricane Sandy.
Like many families in the Northeast, our home happened to be in the path of Hurricane Sandy. Like most of those families, we did as much as we could to prepare. We stocked up on water and non-perishables. We moved everything from the yard to our garage, filled our propane tank, cleaned out the gutters, tested all the sump pumps and made sure we had plenty of flashlights and batteries. While some families were busy watching the news and saturating their minds with a barrage of impending doom, we decided to celebrate. We did as much as we could to prepare and then we decided to enjoy it and have some fun.
All of this buzz and discussion about Hurricane Sandy was new to our children so we decided to create a whole experience around it. First, we answered all of their questions about hurricanes... then, we planned Hurricane 'Sandyfest' and let the kids be the planners. (Sidenote: Margie and I went to Oktoberfest in Munich last year so the kids pretty much add 'fest' to any big activity now). If you want to experience unbridled enthusiasm, tell a 4 and 7 year old that they can stay up late and that you'll play whatever games they want for the next couple of hours!
Hurricane 'Sandyfest' started with 'puzzlefest' (see what I mean about the fest thing!) where we took every puzzle that we had out of the closet and put them all together.
After a short break and a text from their cousins showing their own dance party, they decided that the next activity had to be a Wii dance party. Watching kids dance is always entertaining.. watching them dance with a Wii remote to Who Let the Dogs Out will forever be seared into our memories.
After the Wii dance party, we played a game called “Creeper” (we basically chase them around and yell creeper.. it's an adaption of a favorite Scooby Doo cartoon) and played a few games of pool.
Just as the last game of pool ended, the lights went out and we read books and wrapped up with a 'snugglefest' on the playroom floor watching the movie Cats and Dogs on our laptop before it ran out of battery.
Hurricane Sandy knocked out our power, blew down some branches, robbed us of several hours of sleep and chilled our house. We'll probably forget a lot of the details surrounding Hurricane Sandy but 'Hurricane Sandyfest' is an experience that created memories that will last a lifetime for the Gunn clan.
How did you survine Hurricane Sandy with your family?