Family Dinners, a Thing of the Past? Not if I Can Help it.

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Life get’s hectic, life get’s busy and life get’s stressful, but when you have a family…you need to nurture and develop it every moment you can and what better way than at the dinner table.

Read on as I share with you my insights on keeping the family dinner alive and well while being a busy, workaholic new father of an energetic bundle of love.

Breaking bread.

Whether it’s at a dinner table, the counter or on a couch listening to music with your food trays locked and loaded….family, love and God are the most important things.

Ever since the birth of our child, just a few months ago, life has gotten more hectic and busy than it ever was. Working many hours, sleeping many less hours and having much more responsibility…..where do you turn and how do you keep the family dynamic in place without losing your cool?

Why is Family Dinner Time Important?  See below……

Make the Time and Take the Time.

It’s not necessarily dinner, it could be breakfast or lunch, the main thing is to make the time and take the time.

Make the time to gather and give thanks and take the time to enjoy and get to know your loved ones. That’s right, take the time to get to know your loved ones. Yes, it may sound silly and you might say.. “Of course I know my wife and kids…they’re my wife …and kids…a duh!”

You may be missing the point. Take the time to just be. Exist for that present moment alone. Take the time to listen to what your spouse has to say without judgement. Listen to your kids talk about how cool it was that they had a pizza party in school or just take the time to listen to your inner peace at the dinner table. Peace and quiet can be the best remedy for a scattered mind and racing heart.

Turn off the iphone, ipod, tv and focus on the family. I know it may be hard at first, but you can do it….I have faith in you. Baby steps.

A Simple Recipe of Gratitude.

How about this. Before dinner hold hands and say a prayer? Not the most religious family? Not a problem, hold hands and say thanks for what you are about to receive. Still too much old fashioned goodness for you to handle? Ok.. how about just being appreciative for what you have and give a quick thank you for the food you are about to eat and remind each other how special they are to you?

You don’t need to practice..or think about it. They’re your family and they are there to support you. You don’t need to pull off a presidential speech or something worth of winning recognition on NPR….just wing it.

Try it..You’ll Like it…… Simply hold hands at the table and look one another in the eye and tell them what they mean to you. It may sound corny to you but this was once the fashion years ago by a majority of families and can really turn into a special event.

Many people have the vision of June Cleaver in her pearls and apron serving Ward, in his starchy shirt and tie, a lovey casserole that took her 6 hours to prepare. Well not a big deal for June, an under achieving house wife who wasn’t able to speak her mind without the threat of ward lifting his brow in disgust.

Venting..It’s What’s for Dinner.

So many people take dinner time to vent and complain to one another. What a great way to enjoy a meal with stress, acid and cortisol churning in your stomach. “Pass the sarcastic comment honey”……

Eat Your Spinach and Your Kids Won’t have Premarital Sex.

Statistics show that the more often families sit down to family meals, the less likely the kids are to smoke, do drugs, drink underage, consider suicide and have premarital sex. They are also more likely to do better in school, develop an advanced vocabulary and be more cultured.

It’s Not Just Me….We Have Stats……

According to a new Columbia University survey, teenagers who eat with their families at least five times a week are more likely to get better grades in school and much less likely to have substance abuse problems.

It found teens having family dinners five or more times a week were 42 percent less likely to drink alcohol, 59 percent less likely to smoke cigarettes, and 66 percent less likely to try marijuana.

Also…A Harvard University study found that family dinners were the most important family events in helping children develop language skills.

All in all, it’s hard to overlook the research on the positive effects of family dinners on a child’s diet, development socially and sense of connection with their parents and siblings.

I don’t know about you but I much rather talk about the Fair Trade of where my after dinner coffee came from than who’s gonna take Sally to the clinic to check out that promiscuous rash.

Ok, I’m trying to keep some humor in this posting because that’s what I do but this is some serious schizzle ma nizzle.

Those who pray together stay together and those that eat together …well…are less dysfunctional and are more photogenic and have better hair.

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