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F is For Family Table -The Family That Eats Together Stays Together

Jolly family dining togetherGrowing up, my family ate dinner together every single day. It was a great way for the five of us to connect after our busy days. I truly believe that eating together is one of the things that made us a strong close knit family. I honestly thought that this was something all families did, but got a rude awakening one day when I was in High School. Somehow during a conversation I mentioned to a friend that we always ate together and she thought it was weird. She said that my family sounded like the Huxtables.

Now that I have my own little family, we have continued the tradition of eating together as a family. Sure there are days when we all can’t eat together because of work, sports, etc.., but the point is if we are all home, we’re eating meals as a family, no if’s ands, or buts about it.

Nowadays, it seems rare to find families that eat together on a regular basis. I guess a lot of families have little time in their schedules to actually sit down at the family table and share a meal together. I notice that many families rely heavily on electronic communications to touch base with family members.

Though families have not completely lost track of one another thanks to e-mail and texting, they rarely have quality time together. It almost seems as if each member of the modern family lives in their own little world. With all that is going on around them combined with cram packed schedules, it is easy to see why many families drift apart.

While it may be difficult to make time for entertainment such as watching movies together, families can reconnect by sharing meals at the family table. Even though family members are busy, they gotta eat! By taking the time to have meals together families can learn more about each other and become a stronger family unit.

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Dedicating a small amount of time to eat together may be hard to get used to but it is not impossible. Making it a mandatory family rule with consequences that at least one meal a day is shared may help corral children to the table. A great way to encourage cooperation is to prepare meals that are family favorites.

Making this time together fun also helps to encourage family members to share meals. Some families do this by having each member share a part of their day with the rest of the family. Having one family member ask another about a particular situation or event is also a great way to have fun while sharing meals. There are also a couple of great card games that you can purchase which will encourage conversation between parents and kids. One to try is Table Topics Family. It’s basically a box of cards. Each card has a prompt on it and everybody can take their turn answering the prompt. It’s a pretty fun game!

It can be surprising how much families can learn about each other while eating together. This time can also be dedicated to encouraging each other through difficult situations. Parents can also become more aware of what is going on in their children’s lives while sharing meals.

Sure it may be difficult to actually find the time to sit down and eat, many sacrifices will have to be made but the overall benefits of eating together are phenomenal. It is important to make the best of this time because of the sacrifices each member must make to be part of a meal shared together. The many benefits of families sharing meals with each other make it easy to say ‘the family that eats together stays together’.

Do you eat together as a family?

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About the author

Diane Nassy

Diane is a New Jersey-based writer and blogger. She is a wife and the mom of a 9-year-old little boy. Through her blog, she wants to inspire moms to find Zen in their lives while offering practical tips and other valuable information to help families deal with everyday issues. Check out Diane's Google+ profile "

8 Comments

  • I try to eat together with my children as a family for the most part. We do have days when we eat separately, or my children eat at the table while I am in the kitchen or living room. During the school year we eat together 4 out of 5 days, and during summer we have more meals together because I cook all meat on the grill. It is so important. My family ate together when I was growing up as well.

  • I agree, it matters. We do try to sit down as a family every day -not always easy, once the kids have jobs, and clubs, and sports, etc. but we’re pretty good at it! And yeah, people tend to think it’s weird.

  • I have always put a lot of effort into making sure that the family eats meals together. Now that the kids are older, we are constantly enforcing to rule “no cell phones at the table”.

  • Hi there,
    When I was growing up, my family always ate dinner together. That was the family time really.
    It was the same with my family/children, we ate together for all of the meals. Sometimes that is the only quality time now that everyone is older 🙂
    I enjoy it when we all sit at the table together for dinner.

  • My kids are still young, ages 6 and under, and we all eat together every night. I’m sure it’ll get harder as they get older, but I hope we can still find time to sit down to eat dinner together.