Family Moments: Yasmin O'Connor

Family Moments is about the wonderful experience of connecting as a family.

In this series, we encourage parents to take a look at those truly special family moments. Memories that evoke a feeling of pure joy because they represent quality time with the people we love the most. The realities of modern day life can make these family moments feel out of our reach a lot of the time. Through this series, parents take a look at the obstacles that can get in the way of these happy family experiences with a view to making some changes so that life can involve more of them. Today we’re speaking to Yasmin O’ Connor. 

A little bit about me and my family.

My name is Yasmin and I have four kids aged 12, 8, 5 and 3 (in September). I've been a stay at home parent for the past eight years and my partner is a self-employed builder. We're both from Dublin and currently live here, too.

Our favourite way to spend time together is...

We love to have family time just the six of us. One of our favourite things to do is going to the Phoenix Park which is just beside us. We love visiting any park with a picnic and a football. We can all eat together and play afterwards. It's just a lovely time when we can all chat together with no distractions like the TV or housework.

Something else we have started to do now that Bill (the youngest) is a bit older and has more concentration, is we all sit down with popcorn and a blanket and watch a movie together.

Our most cherished family moment is...

Recently we brought the kids to their first festival and it was so fun! It was at Tayto Park so the kids all had fun on the rides, etc. Then we went to where the music stage was. We sat on the grass in the sun and the kids had a dance and some food. It was just lovely to see them all enjoying it together.

Something that I treasure every year though is Christmas Eve. I get us all matching pjs which I think is equally hilarious and cute. We have hot chocolate and watch a Christmas movie. It just warms my heart and is something I really look forward to (despite me being somewhat a Grinch about Christmas in general).

The thing that gets in the way of us spending time together is...

Work and housework definitely restrict our time together.

My partner is a self-employed builder so it's really 24/7 being on call for him and he works long days. It's hard to switch off when running a business too, so even on family holidays, he has to take business calls. This can be annoying but it has to be done to pay the bills!

Then the housework is another one. I feel like I'm constantly washing, folding and sorting clothes. When my other half is home from work, we are running around doing general tidying and it's such a time sucker.

To combat that, the odd time I will dump all the clean clothes on our bed and get us all to sit around and sort socks etc. It helps me out and we all get to have a chat.

Our pledge as a family:

This is tough because I feel like we already try to squeeze as much as we can in while still maintaining our own alone time too which I think is very important for all family members.

However, I would like to put the phone down more. I think we are all guilty of sitting down after a long day and aimlessly scrolling through social media to unwind but I think the best thing to do would be to just put the phone away and chill.

With tablets, video games, TV and my eldest now having a phone, I'd like us to have an hour free some evenings where nobody uses any technology. Maybe we could do a jigsaw-like I used to do with my grandparents when I was younger. Yes, I'm definitely going to aim for that and buy some jigsaws!

To maximize your quality family time, take our Family Moments Challenge.

We would like to thank Yasmin for sharing her special family moments with us. To read more stories just like Yasmin's, click here.

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