Sunday, September 25, 2016

group home evening

On Sunday, Doug had the assignment to do a training session for all of the leaders and committees of the Family Home Evenings groups in the YSA Stake.  He asked me to help.  We had so much fun working on it together and preparing a 50 minute long class.  Family Home Evenings in the YSA are different than normal family home evenings because the groups are assigned as groups by the bishop.  Each week is different... one week, they meet with just their group.  One week, they meet at the home of the Bishopric members (which is why we had them last year each month for dinner).  One week it is a stake activity and then there is the week that they meet as a ward for a group home evening. This brings them together for an activity of some sort at least four times a month, plus other activities.

As Doug and I prepared this class together, we talked quite a bit about how I'd had the privilege of being the Family Home Evening host for the Senior Singles all those years in Smithfield.  What a wonderful and lovely experience that was to get to know those sweet little old ladies and to enjoy their wit and wisdom!  Most of those women have "graduated", as Doug calls it and are gone now. There are only a few still left who are living.  I will be eternally grateful for that opportunity to get to know and love them!

For our class, we discussed the how tos and whys of being organized, planning and preparing great activities; ways to encourage attendance, reasons for them to want to come and to not want to come.  In the last ten minutes, we passed out a list of some fun ideas for Group Home Evenings and I thought, this morning, I should share them here on the blog!  They would make for some fun activities for youth activities or large family activities!  So, here they are!

Group Home Evening Ideas

1.       Ward Talent Show
2.        Indexing/Family History Night
3.        Minute to Win It night
4.        Cook-off Dinner with prizes (Appetizers, Main dishes and desserts)
5.        Line Dancing
6.        Watch Nacho Libre with Nacho Bar (or any other theme movie with theme food.)
7.        Campfire
8.        Temple Tales & Testimonies (Have several people share unique old stories of historical temple experiences, then testimonies of their own)  (FUN AROUND A CAMPFIRE!)
9.        Use “Just SERVE” for service ideas (see
10.         Visit Old folks NOT in December   Play games with them.
11.         Carol the halls of Seniors with oldies songs instead of Christmas Carols any month but December
12.         Spudwood Derby (Like a pinewood derby only using raw potatoes)
13.         Pudding Pictionary (using pudding instead of a white board... can also be done with sugar or salt or flour on a tabletop)
14.         Book of Mormon Bingo
15.         Write Missionaries from Ward or siblings
16.         Service Scavenger Hunt (Great ones suggested on Pinterest)
17.         Collect food for charity
18.         Collect toys and blankets for kids or the animal shelter
19.         Clean up a Park or road
20.         Make cookies or treats for firefighters or police
21.         Serve a special Meal for seniors in a local home ward
22.         Write thank you notes/make simple treats and deliver to YSA leaders
23.         Photo Scavenger Hunts
24.         Getting to Know you Games
25.         Ask someone to come in and speak to your group about a fun topic (organizing, study habits, relationships...)
26.         Read Guinness Book and try some of the simple quicker insane ideas in it.
27.         PINTEREST!!!  Search FHE ideas, YSA activities, YW activities, LDS Activities

 Group Home Evening is the reason for this list, but I think that lots of these would be great just for your own personal family night or ward youth activities.  Thought I'd share!  What a gift, I say again, to work with and serve the YSA and enjoy this special time with Doug and all these super beyond amazing young single adults!  Life is good!

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