Resolutions can be daunting things. If you set too specific of goals, you corner yourself into a narrow path, too broad and you give yourself outs and excuses. This year I resolved to NOT set resolutions, and instead opted for family goals which I would instigate. As a family, I wanted us to make healthy choices in our routines. Instead of something we did that left us feeling guilty, such as over indulging on treats and junk food we are working on incorporating more water and whole foods into our diet, as well as family exercise into our lives, so these would become routine for us. It took some planning and creativity but it was worth it.
Our little island is abundant in hiking trails for all ability levels, so starting each Saturday with a family hike was an easy way to get some exercise, hydration and some quality family time too.
An hour or so tramping along a damp, woodsy path was energizing, racing to the next bend in the path, throwing sticks for the dogs and skipping rocks across the lake got us all moving and ready for the day ahead. Packing some healthy snacks and bottles of Nestlé Pure Life flavoured water kept us hydrated and fuelled. Now, the kids look forward to choosing the next hike, each taking turns pouring over the trail maps on Friday evening and finding a new place to discover together.
A huge part of our family time is our dinners together. We make an effort to always eat our evening meal together, as a chance to connect about our day and talk about things that are on our minds. Making food the centre of this time brings us together in the kitchen before dinner, everyone pitching in to get the food on the table. With so many different likes and dislikes among our three kids, creating healthy meals everyone will enjoy is a priority for me. We grow a lot of fruits and veggies on our farm and they feature prominently in our meals, but I wanted to get back to basics and ditch the pasta and packaged foods we all inevitably fall back on from time to time.
Meal planning has become more of a collaborative activity, with each member of the family contributing ideas for meals. Asking the kids to think about foods that are eaten the way they grow was more simple of a concept than saying whole foods, and soon even our choosiest and youngest was interested in helping out in the kitchen, excited by the idea of being able to identify each of the foods on his plate. No more mystery casseroles!
Even though I didn’t set actual resolutions, I set goals that were achievable for myself and my family. By being creative and open minded we have gradually modified our lives to make healthy choices a routine and are enjoying these changes as they bring us closer together.
Creating and maintaining routines is easier than you think.
- Start by setting a few easy to obtain goals, like getting outside every day, increasing your water intake, or cooking vegetarian once a week.
- Focus on achieving these goals for a period of 4 weeks to set the routine.
- Manage these goals each week, until you don’t even realize you are doing them.
- Add new goals, because now these ones are routine!
- Check out this great video from Today’s Parent about how routines are healthy for your kids!
First things first though… it is time to start! Join other Canadian families in the movement to make healthy choices this year. Nestlé Pure Life is available in a variety of convenient sizes, so it’s easy for your family to make healthy beverage choices on the go.
Visit todaysparent.com or madewithnestle.ca for more tips on how you and your family can #DrinkBetterLiveBetter.