When my husband and I moved out of our small living space and into our current home, the thing we were most excited about was having a dining room. We had known for two years what lighting fixture we wanted to hang and the style of table we were going to get.
I was afraid we wouldn’t use it. But you know what? We do!
Yes, every once in a while we eat on the run or in front of the TV, but most of the time we sit at the dining room table as a family.
Now don’t get me wrong, meal time with busy-bee toddler and a squirmy baby can be quite stressful. My husband and I usually grab a few bites in between feeding the littles and wiping up messes.
But we know it’s just a phase.
Most importantly, though, we want our children to think it’s normal to eat at the table because we know there are long term benefits from eating together as a family.
Benefits of Eating at the Dining Room Table
Families who eat dinner together are healthier, more connected, and have kids who are less likely to smoke, drink, do drugs or be depressed.
The studies are sited often so you’ve most likely heard this data before. You know it’s wise to eat together as a family. You undoubtedly desire healthy kids who like to hang out as a family. But let me ask you, have you purposely set aside a dedicated place to eat as a family?
No, I don’t mean in front of the TV.
I’m not even asking if you have formal dining room.
I’m really asking if you have a place that is cleared off and used almost exclusively to eat together as a family. It can be a dining table, kitchen table, stools at the kitchen counter or even a picnic style covering in the middle of the floor.
Most of us have at least one place that could be used exclusively for connecting as a family but it can often become a spot that’s used as a dumping ground. We walk in the door, see a flat surface and throw our mail, bags, purses and anything else we’re holding down on the table. The dining table becomes a catch-all.
Can you relate?
If so, let me encourage you to take a little time today to clean off the table.
Then take a few minutes to eat together as a family. It doesn’t have to be a five course meal. It could be take-out, a home-cooked meal, or even just a snack. It could last an hour. Or it could be a 10 minute sit down in between work and your child’s soccer practice.
Surprisingly, the what and when don’t matter as much as the where.
Try it. Ask your kids about their day. Tell them about yours. Enjoy a few minutes together as a family.
You just may be surprised at what you learn!
Oh,if you need some conversation starters here is one of my favorite resources:
I’d love to hear from you. Where do you eat as a family? Why? And what do you talk about?
If you’ve been reading long, you know several of my favorite home-related bloggers and I are writing a monthly series on cleaning, de-cluttering and taking care of your home. For other ideas related to the dining room, stop by these other Room by Room bloggers!
- Jami from An Oregon Cottage is showing off her beautiful Dining Room Before and After pictures
- Nony from A Slob Comes Clean is talking about Keeping the Dining Room Under Control
- Taylor from Stain Removal 101 is sharing How to Polish Silver: Tips & Tricks To Make It Easy
- Lauren from Mama’s Laundry Talk is talking about Washing and Care Instructions for Dining Room Linens
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