On Monday, my kids head into their school building for the first time since March 2020. I’m filled with such a mix of emotions, and I know that millions of parents around the country — whether their kids have been attending school over the past 1.5 years or not — feel the same way.

As part of the huge transition from remote school back to in-person learning, I know my family is going to struggle with having to get up and get ready two hours earlier than we have been for months and months. I thought we should try and slowly transition the kids back to their old wake-up time, but my husband was like, “Nope, we’re just gonna switch over on Monday.”

It’s gonna be … interesting. May The Force Be With Us! And anyone else in this situation!

Needless to say, we’re going to try to keep it really chill this weekend so that the kids can save up their energy for the big week ahead. Regardless of whether or not your kids are already back in school, let’s be real: we all deserve more down time than usual these days.

Here are 6 family-friendly movies to watch when your crew needs to just relax:

Spirit Untamed – There’s nothing like the bond between a girl and her horse, and so it is with Lucky (Isabela Merced) and Spirit. But when a group of horse wranglers (led by Walton Goggins) comes after Spirit and the rest of his herd, Lucky gets a chance to prove her friendship, loyalty and bravery to the wild mustangs she loves so much.

Luca – This coming-of-age tale set in the late 1960s features a boy with a big secret: he’s actually a sea monster! But he has the ability to transform into a human on land, and that’s how he comes to have a totally awesome summer in the Italian seaside town of Portorosso. However, his fun in the sun is constantly threatened by this question in the back of his mind: What will happen if someone finds out what I really am? It’s a sweet story with a great message for kids of all ages.

In The Heights – If you have tweens or teens, they should appreciate the incredible soundtrack and fast-paced story of this adaptation of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s first Tony-winning musical, starring Anthony Ramos. Read my full review here!

Peter Rabbit 2 – In this sequel, Peter (James Corden) is frustrated that his reputation for naughty behavior seems to be set in stone, no matter what he does. However, when his family is put in danger when Peter gets caught by animal control after venturing out of the garden, he needs to do some soul-searching and figure out who he really wants to be going forward.  

Raya and the Last Dragon – If you haven’t seen this one yet, it’s a must! Raya (Kelly Marie Tran), a kick-butt young warrior, tries to save her people (including her dad) from evil spirits who have cursed her land. But to succeed, she needs help from the last living dragon (Awkwafina).

The Spongebob Movie: Sponge on the Run – Your favorite gang from Bikini Bottom is back, but they’re in crisis! Gary, SpongeBob SquarePants’ pet snail, has disappeared. SpongeBob and his BFF, the starfish Patrick, believe King Poseidon might be behind the snail-napping, so they rally their friends to help with the rescue mission. 

Best of luck with back-to-school, everyone!

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