“Family Sports for Family Home Evening,” Ensign, Oct. 2001, 69
One Monday evening our parents announced we were going to have a sporting event patterned after the Olympic Games. Each of us took turns competing in simple athletic events they had planned for us in the backyard.
First, we ran an obstacle course—jumping over the swing, running under the slide, jumping three times on the trampoline, winding our way through ropes and bars, and sprinting to the finish line.
Then we enjoyed throwing the “discus” (a softball) and measuring the distance, teaming up for three-legged races, and passing the baton in the team relay.
Everyone cheered for everyone else. When the competition ended, we returned to the living room and our parents passed out our “trophies.” When we caught a glimpse of our awards, we were excited; we did not even notice they were secondhand trophies. Attached to each was a handwritten tribute: Laurie—Best Sportsmanship; Shannon—Fastest Runner; Joel—Greatest Flexibility; and so on. Everyone got some kind of trophy. For a long time, those trophies held a place of honor on top of our dressers. Seeing them reminded us of that family home evening and helped build family unity and feelings of self-worth.
Activities such as this don’t take a lot of money, just some creativity, some time, and a lot of love. In those few hours together, we learned important lessons about teamwork, encouraging others, the need for everyone to feel part of a group, and the importance of families.—Bonnie B. Larsen, Wellsville Eighth Ward, Wellsville Utah Stake