I’ve always heard that “the family that prays together, stays together” and “the family that plays together, stays together.” I believe both are true. We need prayer and play to cement our relationships. But I’ll admit, my husband and I don’t always do “play” well. We’d both prefer to read a book! But over the years we’ve managed to institute a few family rituals that can be classified as “play”.
Because of that, March means one thing in our family—the NCAA college basketball tournament, the official “March Madness.” (I say official because my husband spent a few years with the NCAA as a client defending their copyright of that phrase.)
I didn’t care much about college basketball until I met my husband. He and his college friends would set up three or four in order to watch all the first round games. And if I wanted to be with him, which I did, I watched, too. I learned to recognized Dick Vitale’s unique style in calling the games, labeling an outstanding freshman a “Diaper Dandy” or noting a “PTPer” (Prime Time Player). (Side note: I still love listening to Dick Vitale call a game!)
When our kids were in elementary school, we began letting each person fill out a tournament bracket before hunkering down to watch the games. I’d like to say it’s all in fun, but bragging rights can get serious around our house!
My husband even attended four Final Four weekends, once with me, once with our kids and my parents while I was out of town at a writing conference. We haven’t done that in several years, but we’ve been known to crane our necks to see game scores during Spring Break trips—while resting on the ski slopes or in between rides at Walt Disney World. When a score goes final, there is always a mad rush to see who surged ahead in the standings. (Note: my boys are quite happy for no Spring Break trip this year, leaving them free to watch all those first round games without interruption!)
Granted, our spring ritual will change a bit this year. My daughter is away at college, so we won’t get to listen to her smack talk in person. But I’m sure she’ll make her voice heard in other ways. And my son’s girlfriend, who has been around for almost a year now, may get initiated into the process as well.
I think our “play” together has made for some fun memories, with more to be made in the coming years. And in the madness that is March (and April and May), it’s good to have yet another common denominator to bring us together as a family.
Basketball photo courtesy of Photoexpress.com
So what does your family do to "play" together? Or maybe tell us how your family survives the madness of the spring months with all the recitals and graduations and weddings and showers and awards days and and and . . .