Is the family dinner time old fashioned? Personally, I tend to think not. My boys are grown, now. They are either in school, or have jobs of their own. At this point of our lives, we are not always together for dinner. However, since my boys have grown up in a household where everyone was sitting at the kitchen table by 6pm, they have come to value such gatherings when the opportunity comes about now that they are older and not around as much. In fact, there is an obvious contentment when we manage such a family dinner. It feels right, feels like home. As they anxiously dig into whatever the chow may be, someone will often comment, “Hey, we’re all together,” which brings a profound smile of acknowledgment by all before conversation is in full gear as everyone catches up with each other.
Finding time to eat as a family when chasing to dance class or basketball practice after school gives the family a chance to slow down and take a breather from a hectic afternoon. Consistent family dinnertime will create a routine for children. Such stability is important for kids. Whether it is hot dogs, pizza, or filet mignon being served, the food on the table has no importance in comparison to the shared conversation about the school day, friends, work, etc. At the same time, an interest and concern for other family members is naturally developed. We all wish our children to grow up with good family memories and values which can be passed down to their own children. And, it is the good memories which will turn a house into a home.