Remember the giddy excitement you used to feel as a kid, when waking up on a Saturday morning with the whole weekend still ahead of you?
I used to share a bedroom with my elder sister. She had the important responsibility to read the time. More specifically, to tell me the exact moment when the time to sleep would magically transform into the time to play. She observed the little hand and the big hand of the clock in our room. It would eventually and inevitably give us the cue for permission to leave our beds and bedroom.
We hurried downstairs in our pajamas, and bundled up on the couch in front of the TV to watch cartoons. Usually my parents would leave a snack for us to enjoy. I imagine they blissfully enjoyed their extra hour of sleep and freedom before the rest of the day set in.
I’ve had the idea to recreate this joyful Saturday morning feeling as a fun cartoon morning with friends.
The basic idea: You show up in your pyjama on Saturday at 8AM at our doorstep. We provide cartoons and breakfast.
Admittedly, they would first need to face the dark cold winter morning to get to our house. Also, it needed a bit more planning and preparation from our side, compared to simply waking up and watching the clock. We were up baking pancakes the night before until midnight. And there was definitely that groggy moment at 7AM when I questioned why I thought this would be a good idea in the first place.
But then the smell of coffee, pancakes and eggs filled the room and the doorbell rang. A luxurious breakfast welcomed our brave guests. The onesies, pyjamas and jogging pants slowly found their way to the comfy couch and mattress. Everyone sat down, squished side by side with plenty of pillows and blankets (and loads of stuffed animals generously provided by Rob; thanks).
I had asked everyone for their favourite childhood cartoons, and included as many personal favourites as possible in a curated playlist to amp up the nostalgia. We watched Tom & Jerry, Looney Tunes, Smurfs, Popeye and much much more.
What I notice in my social life is that my fallback option is to grab a coffee together or have dinner, chat about the latest happenings and say goodbye. Now, don’t get me wrong. I love coffee. And I love talking to friends about what is going on in their life and spending quality time together.
However, every now and then it can also be worthwhile to break the patterns that we build. I was curious to explore breaking the rules regarding “appropriate friend activities” and replace them with a less conventional activity.
Ideally: do something out of the ordinary that creates new experiences and good memories.
Childhood experiences as inspiration for fun activities
Childhood experiences are a great inspiration for fuelling fun activities in both your social and personal life. Sometimes it can work to copy the activity more or less literally, like we did by watching cartoons in pyjama on a Saturday morning.
Other times it can be worthwhile to look a bit deeper, and wonder what core experience lies beneath the memory that you cherish. You may discover that it isn’t so much about watching cartoons, but creating a free space without responsibilities. So then the question becomes: how do you experience (part of) the weekend as a sacred stretch of time to do whatever you want, without a need to justify your time to anyone else?
And perhaps there is a way to have the best of both worlds: Hang out with friends in a laid back atmosphere (literally on your couch in your pyjama), and then friendly kick them out of your house by noon so you have the rest of the weekend to hang a craft project on your wall (the 1 chore we did that afternoon) and then relax and do nothing else. ;)
Organise a cartoon morning in pyjama for friends was #6 on my creative dream list. Check out my creative dream list to know what other fun things I’m currently working on.
Is there any happy childhood memory that you could transform into a fun social activity with friends or family?
I’m curious to hear what experiences you’d be happy to recreate.