If your nieces or nephews are like a lot of kids, they’re probably pretty crazy about you. After all, there’s nothing like time with your aunts and uncles.
However, given the competition that some aunts and uncles face in terms of grandparents who also want to spend special time with their favorite children, play games with friends, go to school, sports, and the ever-present lure of video games and television, it can be hard to carve out time to do things with your niece and nephew for those extra special experiences where you create those remarkable memories, the ones that last a lifetime.
So the next time you’re planning fun things to do with your nieces and nephews, try one of these five ideas to help you put together something truly memorable:
Give them a chance to try something they’ve never done with mom and dad.
The fastest way to score cool points with your favorite short people, and create memories that last a lifetime, is to give them an experience they never had with their parents. These unusual things can be adventures to have at home, like a camping trip in the living room, a scavenger hunt in the backyard, or an indoor scavenger hunt.
Or, they can be events and activities that require you to get in the car and go somewhere, like a theme restaurant you’ve never tried before, a drive through the countryside, a picnic in a park you’ve never been to, or a trip down “memory lane” to see important milestones from your own growing up years.
Check out some live entertainment.
If your niece or nephew tends to spend a lot of time watching their favorite shows on DVR or playing digital games, it’s about time they discovered the joys of live entertainment. Options to consider include dinner shows, community theater or productions at your local high school or college, concerts in the park, and musical performances at local churches.
Have a surprise party.
You can build excitement about your afternoon or evening with your nieces and nephews by letting them know a few days in advance that they’re going on an outing with you, but that they won’t know what the outing entails until they arrive. at your destination Add fun and suspense with a systematic campaign in the days leading up to the event by dropping a few strategic tips.
For example, if you’re taking them to a sleepover at the zoo, you can arrange to put a different clue on their breakfast table each morning: Animal crackers one day, gift bags with new pajamas inside the next, etc.
Make them feel older.
Add some flair and uniqueness to your outing by planning something with an adult theme, such as a “dinner party” at your house. You can ask kids to RSVP, suggest a “host gift” if the event involves them coming to your house, and help them pick out stylish outfits. Even if the food is hotdogs and hamburgers, you can keep the theme going by wearing your best china and glasses, and having an “after-dinner drink” of sodas, non-alcoholic beer, or fancy lemonade.
Try a theme night.
A special theme for your outing can make the activity even more memorable and help increase the pre-event excitement. You can make it seasonal, like “Start of Summer” or “Christmas in July,” or you can do something historical, like “80’s Night” or “Medieval Night.” Ask the kids to do a little research ahead of time, or prepare special outfits or costumes, to help them get into the spirit of things before the big day arrives. You can keep the theme going by having themed party favors, conversation starters, dinner items, etc.