Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Dinner Time Should be Family Time

Does dinner time at your home look like this?

or do you just wish it did? 

There are so many reasons that dinner time should be family time. Here are some of my top reasons for making this a priority in my home.

1. Keeps the lines of communication open -  As your children grow up they will either talk to you or talk to someone else. In our home we are striving to show our children that their feelings and thoughts are important to us. So, we spend time each day talking about our day, things or changes that are coming up and even behavior problems that happened while Daddy was gone to work. The children have come to expect this and in the years to come it will be a great time to check in with our children, to pour into their lives and hearts as they start to make their own choices, and to let them know that home is a safe haven where they can share their thoughts and feelings openly.

2.  It creates healthy eating habits. -  If everyone is sitting down at the table and visiting and sharing about their day it is more likely that everyone will slow down while they are eating which will prevent most over-eating issues. While you are talking and answering questions you take breaks in between bites to talk, you aren't shoveling it in mindlessly while watching television. And, it is much easier to try new foods in a positive way when the whole family is trying them together. Your more picky eaters will see the more adventurous eaters try it and they will be more likely to try it too. And the more relaxed you are the easier it is for your body to digest the food that you are consuming. Overall, it is much healthier for your family to make this change.

3. It will become a tradition. - I was blessed to be raised in a home where the family meal table was very important while I was growing up. I have very fond memories of those meal times and there is still a very strong pull to gather with my family around a table for any occasion. I want that for my children. I want them, no matter where life takes them to feel the pull to come home to my table. And feel free to be themselves and to let their guard down so to speak. And I know from personal experience that this tradition is possible, because I have lived it.

Those are my main reasons for making dinner time family time in our home. Coming up next in this series I will share with you ways to get the conversations started when you decide to implement the family table idea into your home. Ways to keep things fun, exciting, and stress free. But most importantly, focused on the people that give you a reason to have a family meal table.

Written by - Amanda Sikes (Happily Domestic contributor) 

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