Alex and I have always been pretty laid back about dinner, I mean, of course I always make the most delectable, scrumptious, from scratch meals, of course.... but we never really cared where anyone ate the meal. In front of the TV, the kitchen counter, at the kitchen table, usually alone... it didn't really matter... until... Audrey started participating in dinner! She wasn't satisfied with being fed in the kitchen, alone in her highchair, nor would she allow me and my husband to eat simultaneously as someone had to hold her and usually had to give up half of their meal. So, about a month ago we instituted (Alex and I felt very parental as we had never instituted anything before) Family Dinner Time!
Per the Family Dinner Time guidelines, all members of the household are to eat dinner at the kitchen table TOGETHER. No TV (Vincent!), no phones (Alex!), just good old family time while sharing a meal together! The first night we did it, I managed to get dinner together by halftime of a football game that was playing and I had built it up as a big deal to Vincent all day long so I had all family members on board! We shared a meal with great conversation and it was awesome, I couldn't believe we didn't come up with this sooner!
The results? Vincent LOVED Family Dinner! He told his teachers and classmates about it, he talked about it in the car, and as soon as we got home he requested another family dinner - we had a hit on our hands!
Prior to his excitement, my husband was half on board with family dinner. I knew he could really take it or leave it, but with Vincents excitement about the whole thing we started having family dinner every single night and then it transferred over to family breakfast and lunch during the weekends until we became like a normal family who eats every meal at the kitchen table - go us!
While it is really cool to be normal and there are really great benefits to sharing a meal together, perhaps the biggest nugget that I gleaned from this entire situation is that if I want something to happen, I need to get my 3-year-old son 100% on board! What's next? A cruise to the Bahamas? A new car?