Getting Intentional about Your Adventures
I talk to a lot of dads who lament that they have a hard time finding the time to do meaningful things with their son. In my experience, it's not so much finding the time but being a little more organized in making things happen. A better word for this is "intentional". Dads need to be more intentional about spending time with their son and making it more fun and adventurous.
I do three things that helps me make things happen with my son. First, I keep an "idea list" of fun things we might do together. Anytime I think of something that would be fun, I add it to the list. I divide that list into three parts. Part one is comprised of things we can do on a moment's notice. Here are some things we can do when time is short:
front yard football
play catch (baseball)
play cards or other games like "spoons"
"indoor basketball" (we have a little hoop on the wall in his room)
Then there are things on the idea list that can be done with a little time or advance planning:
camp out in the back yard
go to the rifle range
go ice skating
shoot sporting clays
go shopping at a knife shop or sporting goods store
go tubing on the river
Third, you should always have some more adventurous things on hand:
visit state parks
do a service project together like Habitat for Humanity
Finally, don't forget there are the "mountaintop experiences" you will want to enjoy with him. For us, that was
So that's the making of a good "idea list".
Next, I want to share with you how I plan making these things happen. If it's Friday night and you've just gotten home from a hard day at work, it's generally too late to make something happen for the weekend. That's what we're often guilty of as dads. To make things happen, you've got to be a little more intentional.
I generally think about two weeks out. I'm looking at my "idea list" for something to do a few weeks from now. At the same time, I'm making preparations for what we will do next weekend. By Wednesday night, you need to be packed and ready to leave on your Friday night adventure. That gives you Thursday evening to make a last minute run to the sporting goods store for that one or two things you forgot.
Third, try to stay organized. I always keep ongoing "packing lists". I have one for hunting, another for riding motorcycles, etc. I always build on these lists. When we're hunting, I write down the things we forgot to bring and add it to my hunting list for next time around. Being organized makes things happen easier and makes the adventure more fun.
Being intentional about making things happen with your son requires some time and attention. But the payoff is worth the investment.
in the Rockies
a Modern Day Knight