Family life can so easily turn into an exhausting race. This weekend encourage the whole family to cancel the rush hour, switch off games consoles and TV and spend more time just laughing, looking and learning together. You'll all guaranteed to feel the benefits.
Here are some simple ways of chilling together, whatever age your kids...
Relax with tots...
This couldn't be simpler. Take some deep breaths. Get your child to imagine they are blowing out birthday candles or blowing a bubble or a feather.
Try some simple yoga stretches. Learn the moves at a local Yogabug class, available nationwide and designed for 2-7-year-olds. www.yogabugs.com or call 020 8772 1800.
Lie on a soft blanket on the floor and show your child how to stretch their body until it's taut, then go all floppy like an old sock. They'll be able to feel their bodies relax.
Take the afternoon off household chores and make a giant bowl of jelly.
Go catch tadpoles. This is a classic lesson in the life cycle of animals. A real-life masterclass is something they'll never forget.
Have a laugh together. Tickle them gently with a feather; tell them a silly rhyme. It's the best stress-reliever there is, will help you bond and make your child feel more secure.
Make a little more time to relax and share precious family moments... Try new Fairy Platinum – it has Fairy's best-ever grease-cutting formula. Great value, it cleans your dishwasher and leaves your plates and dishes gleaming, too. Fairy Platinum's dual-action system contains a special cleaning element to tackle grease and grease residue in your dishwasher that ordinary detergents can leave behind.
Click on www.fairy-dish.com for more fast, simple cleaning inspiration, and fun family ideas.
Relax with tweenies...
Look through the old photos together. Watch them giggle at how you looked when you were little, and help them learn how families fit together.
Education experts say that you shouldn't give up reading to kids even when they can read to themselves... Reading or listening to audio books on CD or iPod is a fantastic way to unwind together.
Make slow food. Don't squeeze a cooking session into a ten-minute mad dash. Devote a whole afternoon to laying out the ingredients, tasting and talking about the food. Make cleaning up together with Fairy part of the ritual. New Fairy's richer, more concentrated formula washes more plates with every squirt so you can be sure that you are getting the same fab Fairy value. And enjoy the range of fantastic fresh scents. Pink Petals and Fresh Lavender are just two of the new Fairy Scent-Sensations to bring a waft of spring into your kitchen.
Relax with teens...
Erm, now we admit this may be more tricky. Teens are growing, changing and discovering their identity, but relaxing with you could help iron out their worries.
Retro board games are making a huge comeback. Love Scrabble, Cluedo, Operation? Redirect family tensions with a fast and furious session of the Really Nasty Horseracing Game. Or get cut throat over a Monopoly board.
Lure them away from MSN with a family makeover project that can last for several weekends in a row. Build a raised veg bed together in the garden, and decide together what you can grow. (Don't plant anything out though until our night-time frosts have stopped.) Or bring out their inner Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen and plan to redecorate a room together with the help of magazines and a load of paint, wallpaper and fabric samples.