Most Sundays I play children's games like "I Spy" and the "Guessing Game" with our 3-year-old son and 6-year-old daughter. Last weekend, the game de jour was the Guessing Game and my daughter started with the question "What do you think is my favorite thing to do in the world?"
Characteristically, as a male adult I began to rattle off those activities I thought a child would most enjoy. My guesses went on and on....the "daddy-daughter" dance, working in the garden or cooking together, making s'mores, riding the tractor, going to the dollar store, painting projects in the garage, the vacations we take, hiking in the woods, making our bonfires or playing soccer (which I coach). None of these was the correct answer.
Finally, exhausted, I gave up and asked her what was her favorite thing in the world? She replied, "spending time with my family". She went on to say "I don't care about the vacations or where we go or what we do. I just like to be with my family."
I am not an overly emotional guy, but I nearly choked up in tears. Sometimes as an adult I attach significance to activities and spending money. In the end, my daughter did not care about what we do or how much it cost - but instead she cared about just being together.