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Motherhood in Kenya: How I’m Making Childhood Memories for my Kids with Family Movie Nights


Hello moms, how are you making memories for your children? Those moments that are so special and will forever be etched in their memories? For example, it could be something fun that you do on a regular basis, an activity that the kids get so excited about and look forward to; moments that they will always remember and dearly cherish in their hearts as they grow? Have you set any such tradition?

Well, today I feature one such mom –MARY ONGUKO-WANYONYI, who has deliberately set aside Friday night as the time to lay back and watch movies with her family. An IT Specialist, Mary is a wife and mother of three: 10-year-old Serena, 7-year-old Baraka, and 1-year-old Taraji. If you’re looking for ideas about how to make special memories for your children by for example setting up a family tradition in your home, then draw inspiration from Mary’s story below.

Mummy Tales: Hi Mary, when did you start the ‘movie night’ tradition in your home?

Mary: I started it sometime in 2016 just after my husband started working out of town. Because of this, my date nights with him decreased. But then, every challenge comes with an opportunity… right? I had to make good of the extra time, and what better way to spend it than with my children?

About the specific idea of movie nights, weekdays are very rushed in my home and I needed a way to unwind / end the week together with the kids while throwing caution to the wind. That’s how I came up with the idea of doing one late night with the kids. It was also an avenue to ‘pick’ their minds on their views about different aspects of life as we relate to the movie characters / theme.

Mummy Tales: When do you do the movie nights?

Mary: The movie nights are normally done on Friday nights right after dinner (8pm). However, on the Friday evenings that I sometimes find myself engaged, we end up having the movie night on Saturday night.

Mummy Tales: How do you make the movie nights something that the kids (and you) look forward to?

Mary: We begin by setting up the living room by making it have that feeling of warmth, comfort and relaxation. We do this by having throw pillows, warm blankies and shawls at hand. The kids and I also prepare popcorns together (I’m yet to learn how to make flavored popcorns – my daughter’s favorite flavor is caramel). We also have our snacks such as crisps, pizza and ice cream, as mummy gets to sip her glass of wine. We also dim the lights in the living room and have our movie theater right at home in the coziest atmosphere.

Mummy Tales: What types of movies/series do you watch? Who selects?

Mary: We all get to pick the movies. The kids suggest movies that they would like to watch. In most cases, they have heard about these movies from their friends. I also google movies for them and offer them as suggestions. We mostly watch animated comedy movies.

Mummy Tales: What have you seen as the benefits of having movie nights in your home?

We have bonded quite a lot as we get to talk and talk and talk. The kids open up about what happened in school or at home, who did what and who said what. I have found it to be a great way to bond and basically catch up after a long week. It’s also a way to keep my now 10-year-old daughter off her cellphone and the internet 🙂 .

Mummy Tales: Thanks Mary for sharing your story!

So that’s Mary’s story. Do you have the tradition of movie nights in your home? On which days do you do it, and how do you make it fun and exciting?

Personally, my sons and I love watching movies and series (and sometimes documentaries) together on easy Sunday afternoons when we’re on ‘chill mode’. I’m subscribed to Showmax (with whom I’ve partnered in this post), so there’s lots for us to choose from. And just like Mary, I have found it to be a good bonding time for us and even more than that -it’s a great way for making special childhood memories for them.

So moms, if movie time is a favorite in your home and you’re thinking of what to watch next, or if you’re thinking of starting the tradition of movie nights in your home with your lovely family, then I suggest you try out Showmax, which has a great collection of premium movies and series for you and the kids. You just need to pay Sh250 via MPESA and you get to watch Showmax for three good months. To to get Showmax for Sh250, click on this link.

I hope watching movies and series is a family tradition you can develop for your family too, as you create those special childhood memories. Thanks for reading 🙂

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Maryanne W. Waweru is a Kenyan mum raising her two sons in Nairobi. A journalist, Maryanne is passionate about telling stories and hopes that through her writing, her readers learn something new, feel encouraged, inspired, and appreciative of what they have in their lives. Maryanne's writing focuses on motherhood, women and lifestyle. "Telling stories is the only thing I know how to do," she says.


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