It seems as though Frank and I are living in a space of close proximity, but we have to be intentional about our emotional closeness. Dinners are interrupted by questions, timeouts, and general toddlerness. The space between dinner and bedtime is filled with play and cleaning up and more half-finished conversations.

After the bedtime routine is complete, it is so easy to fall into reading the news, Facebook, or Twitter. Or, even sitting separately while we read our books. The intentionality of closeness seems so important during this season.

After realizing this need to seek out this time together, we’ve decided to unplug after 8:00. It’s not news that turning off devices and letting your brain rest helps sleep, but hopefully it helps conversation and our small amounts of time, too. Maybe this intentionality means sitting next to each other on the couch as we read, rather than curled up in the chair.

At first, I was quick to blame our nonstop age of information and difficulty to be present. But, on reflection, I realize that this opportunity to make our time more intentional can be a gift. We are choosing to close down distractions and be together. There’s something special and encouraging in that choice.

How do you unplug? Do you have a routine to stay present?

Linked with Lisa-Jo Baker’s Five Minute Friday, a time to write without editing.