If your kids are like mine, they love movie night. There is nothing more exciting than the promise of popcorn, candy, and their favorite characters on the big screen. We try to get to the theater for major releases a few times a year but with three girls of varying ages and interests, there isn’t always an option playing that makes everyone happy. Not to mention the cost… a night at the movies for a family of five, even when we sneak in our own snacks (please don’t tell on us), can cost a pretty penny and many times, one of us is missing a decent chunk for potty breaks or walks in the lobby with an antsy 3 year old. Thus, an at home movie night has come to be one of our go-to for entertainment on the weekends.
It is the perfect plan for Fridays nights when parents, tired from the work week, and kids, tired from the school week (or just tired from attempting to further tire said tired parents), can still have something fun to look forward to in the relaxed comfort of your own home. Sometimes we keep it simple with a Redbox pick and some microwave popcorn. But other nights, especially when it is a movie we are excited about, we make things a little extra special. Some ideas for your next movie night at home:
Our personal favorite is to move all the family room furniture and set up a “floor bed” to have everyone snuggle up on during the movie. This eliminates fighting over who sits on the couch vs. the chair vs. mom or dad’s lap etc. This is also a good time to break out the bean bag chairs or an air mattress – just something unique that makes the setup extra fun.
I love a good theme so you can bet if the movie has an obvious one, I am going to capitalize on it. Baseball? We’re eating hot dogs for dinner and Cracker Jack as our treat. When we introduced the kids to our childhood favorite The Sandlot, we of course had to have s’mores. Our famous “Elf Mix”, a combination of popcorn/cereal/mini marshmallows and chocolate chips (which we now consume year round) originated from a family movie night at Christmas. Home Alone? Cheese Pizza. I could continue, but you get the idea!
Invest in some inexpensive movie night “extras” like reusable popcorn buckets and carnival tickets to enhance the experience for your kids. Dim the lights when the movie starts. Recap favorite parts at bedtime.
Pending the age of your children, it is likely you have already seen every Disney and Pixar movie known to man and probably more than once (or twice, or a thousand times…thank you, Frozen). We recently started throwing back to the movies of our youth because A) they are outstanding and B) our kids are just as entertained by them as we are! Use your discretion for what’s age appropriate for your fam, but here is a list to get you started:
Rookie of the Year
Honey I Shrunk the Kids
Adventures in Babysitting
Troop Beverly Hills
Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitters Dead
A League of Their Own
The Princess Bride
Back to the Future
What are some of your favorite movies? Share your family movie nights with us by tagging @eastvalleymomsblog on social media!