Family Home Evening Helps: Two Favorite Family Home Evenings

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“Family Home Evening Helps: Two Favorite Family Home Evenings,” Ensign, Aug. 2004, 73

Family Home Evening Helps: Two Favorite Family Home Evenings

Some 25 years ago, several Latter-day Saint families invited my husband and me, along with our infant daughter, to share a family home evening. Not yet members of the Church, we loved what we saw, heard, and felt that evening. When we were baptized, we couldn’t wait to start our own family home evenings! Six children and two grandchildren later, we continue our Monday-night observance.

We have a strong conviction of the importance of family night. What other ideas have helped us to faithfully hold family home evening? A couple of our family’s favorite traditions stand out:

Our “picture plan.” When our children were too little to read and write, I helped them make family home evening “picture plans.” As each child had a turn to conduct, we created a simple chart with hand-drawn pictures or symbols representing the assignments for the song, prayer, lesson, activity, and refreshments. Our little planners were so pleased with their efforts and made sure everyone saw their carefully prepared schedule posted prominently on our refrigerator. When it came time to begin, the little one in charge had rehearsed the plan so many times throughout the day that he or she could conduct the entire evening.

Our missionary culture night. While our son was serving a mission in Russia, we periodically held family “Russian night.” Borrowing materials from the local library, we reviewed articles, pictures, music, and maps of the country. We also enjoyed trying recipes of authentic foods. Though our son was far away, we experienced a small part of his mission and culture on Monday night with our family at home.

Little did we know so many years ago how an invitation to family home evening would be the start of blessings we continue to enjoy today. We have shared many happy evenings together—many more than we can list. From firsthand experience, we know that holding regular family home evenings is key to a family’s success.

Jill Malczyk, Utica Ward, Utica New York Stake

Illustrated by Beth Whittaker