Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Family dinner

Every parenting book or magazine you will ever read talks about the concept of the "family dinner". About the importance of sitting down with your whole family a few times a week to eat and catch up and so on. The benefits are endless they say. Its something I had never really put much thought into. When D first started getting mobile we put our dinning room table into storage and made the dining room our "playroom". We lived in a two bedroom apartment so it was open to our living room and we could see everything he did in there. It just made sense. We almost never ate together as a family at home anyway. We ate out a lot or we would eat dinner in the living room with the TV on.

When we found out about being pregnant with K we made arrangements to move into a bigger apartment and we had a time and a half deciding what to do with the playroom/ dinning room situation. We were lucky enough to be able to sort of do both. D's big boy toys are in his room, some of the smaller toys and such are in the common area and the dining table is in its place where it belongs. Problem was, T was working crazy hours at OG and then he took on his second job and was working even crazier hours so it was the drill for me to get the boys fed and in bed and when he came home, he would bring dinner with him or we would eat really late. Family dinners just weren't exactly in the mix for us.

Then, he finally got to leave OG and his crazy, hectic schedule turned into a pretty reliable swing. Still late nights but not as late. So we started eating together. As a family. At first, it was weird. We would all sit and mostly eat and stare at each other. Scarf down our food and go on about our evening. D had never eaten very well during dinner time. It had not taken him long to figure out that dinner time led into bath time which led to bedtime and bedtime is not his favorite.

Then, one night out of the blue, something clicked. We were all excited about it. D saw me cooking and exclaimed "Dinner time, mama!" and ran and got up in his booster chair. T set the table and we all sat down together. It was nice. We talked and joked with D and he relished the attention. K sat in the highchair and alternately batted at the toy that is attached to it and flirted with whoever was looking. It was a complete turn around. D ate everything on his plate and asked for more and we all had grapes for "dessert".

They were right! Family dinner time is awesome!  Since we started eating together I can tell a difference in D's attitude towards food and T. We are all eating better and I have even lost a little bit of weight in the process. Its not something that we can do every night or really might even would want to but I can definitely say, that if you haven't tried it, DO. It made a world of difference in our family and I am loving every second of it.


  1. BRAVO!!!! Keep this up, at least one or two nights a week. You will be a much closer and happier family by doing so. It's a great time for kids to tell Daddy what they did that day, and vice versa.

    Bob Boles
    (a.k.a. "Conductor Bob")

  2. Following you from Friday Follow.

    Have a great weekend! :)

  3. We have been trying too! Our table is the catch all though when we walk in the door, we are still in that scarf everything down and we are done though. That and Hubs needs to learn to not answering to phone or excuse himself until we are all done!

    Glad you got T back so you see him before 11pm! Maybe your family will finally get on a "normal" schedule... lol


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