I don't know about your house, but my house will always fall for the classic, "lets have a night together that is only sort of together." It's horrible, and we try not to do it too often, but last night I pulled out the standard, fool proof bonding time: "Pizza and a movie." I think the kids like it more than if we played board games, built with Legos or bought them each space ships. (Okay, they would take the space ships.)
Our kids know the routine. They lay a blanket on the floor in the living room (because someone always spills), one gets the cups, another the plates and napkins. One cues the dvd player and tv and Ana watches it all happen like a maestro before an orchestra.
Last night I even cheated. We watched a movie that we own, which totally invites them to find out that I just wanted bedtime to come 86 minutes early. They didn't figure it out, and for that 86 minutes plus the 5 minutes of trailers I was the dad of the year! I felt horrible though, because I knew we were having "Pizza and a movie" only because Carter was too sick to go to school or his game and I only had the energy to push play on the remote.
We watched the movie, we ate the pizza, we all felt connected in some strange, not so real way. Now today I will actually engaged with the kids. We have two soccer games to cheer at, so that is a start. We will team up to accomplish stuff around the house and maybe get in another game of balloon volleyball. Who knows, I might even win.
The go to move of "Pizza and a movie" is a little too easy, but last night it was beautiful! Now if the kids would only start liking movies that don't include talking animals I would be hooked.