Eating together


AllyB

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Tom mentioned about how happy people tend to share meals together, or eat together.  Instead of replying to his post, I wanted to start a new topic.

 

I have noticed a lot of families have several 'dinners' to accomodate the family members' schedules.  Often young kids eat early, parents eat in the middle and teenagers might eat later when they come home from their after school activity.

 

Growing up, we often ate together.  There were 6 of us and we each had the same seat at the table for years.  Not only were we eating, but we also talked about the events of the day.  I feel that time was very important for us to stay connected and because of that, I try to do the same with my family (only three of us.)

 

My daugher is 8 and she is often hungry before we have dinner ready.  So instead of having split meals, we just eat earlier.  But we still make a point to all eat together (and try to limit electronic devices until later).  In addition, when she asks about what we are having, I explain to her the health benefits.  (I'm sure most of the time she hears blah blah blah.)

 

I would be interested to hear other families' mealtime traditions and how you feel it benefits your family.

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Growing up in the 60's and 70's, we always ate at the dinner table together. We were also a family of 6: my parents refused to have a TV in the kitchen, and this was before cell/smart phones, tablets, and other electronic handheld devices existed so those devices weren't around to contend with. If they were, I'm sure my parents would have forbade them at the dinner table.

 

My siblings and I have extremely fond memories of eating dinner together at the kitchen table. It's how we caught up with each other and our parents. We all shared good things and challenges happening in our lives. The lessons we learned from my parents at the table went a long way to instilling core values in us. It helps that we all get along. To this day, my siblings would be my friends even if we weren't related.

 

I'm not a parent now, but 2 of my siblings are, and they have carried on this tradition of eating dinner at the table with their children.  I would bet that they're gaining the same benefits we had.  It's hard for me to be objective, but my nieces and nephews are all really good kids. They do well in school, they have good friends, and are polite and kind people. 

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Depending on the season, I try my hardest to sit down at the dinner table and eat with my kids.  We make the same meal for everyone, but because of my schedule, my husband usually eats with our 3 kids, and I will eat later when I get home.  In the morning, when I make breakfast, I am running around getting everything ready while the 3 boys sit at the table and eat.

 

During the fall, we eat early so my oldest can go to practice.  Dinner is a hectic time for us, and I am learning/trying to slow it down and enjoy the time together.  I grew up in a blended house of 7, and enjoyed the time at the dinner table.

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I was the only kid in the house from about age 9 or 10, but even before that I don't recall ever eating at the dinner table...even at holidays. The table was just a receptacle for mail and my mom's craft projects. My family always ate in the living room watching TV. I do have good memories about that...my dad is a fun person to watch funny shows with. But unfortunately, that habit has stuck with me my entire life. Now my cats eat on the kitchen table, but I never do. :ph34r:

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We eat together on the weekends. During the week I am crazy in the morning but made an effort (often unsuccessful) to eat w the kids. I also made an effort to eat dinner w them. I've noticed a lot more good feelings when I eat with the kids. My 6yo son especially appreciates it.

My husband gets home late and has been working a ton during the w30. My old habit was to feed the kids first (often cleaning their plates--into my mouth--so I didn't waste food) and then eating late w my husband. So like 9 or even 9:30.

Everyone feels better when I eat with the kids. And it means they probably eat something more in line with what I'm eating.

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In my earlier years, we all ate together....my mother, father and myself.   As I grew into my teens, my mother went to work for the summers and had a late shift, so I didn't often get to eat with her, but she prepared a meal for my father and I to have for dinner and the two of us would eat together.  There were no cell phones or computers back then, but we did have a TV and we were all pretty much TV addicts, lol.

 

I don't have children, which is probably a good thing because I got rid of my dining table and now just eat on the couch.  Not the best of habits, but it works for me and at least I'm not passing it on to another generation.  :ph34r:  At work I just eat at my desk...also not the best of habits, but it works for me. 

 

Edited to add:  I've had to stay with my mother a couple of times while recovering from surgery and we all just eat on the couch now.  :D

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