This time, I'm posting on something we've only done once, that I hope becomes a weekly tradition.
I recently enjoyed a class on family music at the LDSHE 2017 Homeschooling Conference, taught by Kimberly Blackwell. One of her many suggestions was to listen to the podcast The Evolution of LDS Hymns. As I pondered and discussed with my husband when we would fit this into our lives, I came to envision this as a Sunday activity. My husband asked if I meant to play the podcast in the morning as the children were coming down to breakfast, like I do with conference talks. If we did it that way, I think most of the children wouldn't hear most of it, but I didn't want to force them all to sit down in the living room and quietly listen. Often when I push hard on something, the kids push back.
Well, I waited until after church this evening (and after I enjoyed an hour of quiet time during Q's post-church nap, and people had made themselves PB+J sandwiches) when the inspiration finally struck: coloring time!
When I went down and announced my intention, there was some grumbling. I'm pretty sure I heard "stupid podcast" in it. I cleared off half the table (some people were still sandwiching at the other end of the table). M brought out the coloring books and a gallon bag of colored pencils (don't ask). K asked if it would be okay if he brought down his Harry Potter coloring book, and I began podcast #1: "We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet."
That was the most connected half hour of the day. It felt like what Sunday should feel like. K and M colored, S drew, T sought out the New Era, and I helped Q build a train with the Kid K'nex, all while enjoying various renditions of that hymn. It turned out my grumbler thought I was expecting them to sit through another conference talk, and was pleasantly surprised by what we actually did.
I noted in my planner which hymn we enjoyed today, and strongly desire to repeat the experience next Sunday: Hymn podcast and family coloring time!