You can’t turn on the television, surf the web, pick up a newspaper, or even have a conversation these days without hearing or reading someone’s thoughts on why the world, aka, society, is in the shape it is in. And with this being an election year, we’re also hearing whose fault it is.
I’m going to go out on a limb, however, and say that politics, per se, has little or nothing to do with most of the issues we’re dealing with. Instead, I’m going to suggest that most of society’s problems can be traced back to the breakdown of the family.
Now you know Momma D is all about family, so it shouldn’t come as any surprise that I want to talk about what it takes to keep your family from suffering from a breakdown. But instead of just telling you what I think, I asked four people whose opinions I value to share their thoughts on the subject of family meal times—something that is a valuable tool for a healthy family. I value their opinions because they basically tell me how well I did (or didn’t) do my job. That’s right…today you’re going to hear directly from Zach, Elizabeth, Olivia, and Emma.
In answer to the question, “What are your most vivid mealtime memories as a family?” this is what they had to say…
Zach: “I always liked my birthday meal—popcorn shrimp. I also liked it when you fixed roast on Sunday because if Dad wasn’t working we’d listen to the Marty Robbins cassette while you cooked. I remember the huge family dinners with everyone at Granny’s house, too. But my favorite mealtime memories are the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches you’d fix me and dad to eat when we would go out to cut wood. We’d sit in the woods—eating those sandwiches and talking about whatever.
Elizabeth: I loved how we were all just there together and you guys had each of us tell you what happened at school that day. And I loved the fact that 95% or more of our meals were home cooked (and cooked from what we’d raised).
Olivia: I loved that we all sat down together to eat. I also like that we ate what you fixed or we didn’t eat. I use that same rule for my family. We eat as a family and the TV is off. I also loved the way we all took turns praying for our meal instead of the same person doing it every night.
Emma: I loved the fact that we were all there together—eating and talking. When Dad wasn’t at work and it was all six of us was the best. I also remember the cloth napkins with all the little vegetables on them. I felt special when we used them.
Did you notice there was no mention of fancy foods or dishes, restaurants, being left alone to text, play video games, or watch TV, or about which burger combo they liked best. No, their memories were all about talking…listening…sharing…praying…just being together.
What did you learn from my kids? I hope you learned that your children crave and need the sense of belonging, nurturing, and security that only comes from being a family that talks, listens, shares, prays, and enjoys ‘just’ being together. So please, for your family’s sake and for the sake of society, make dinner time family time.
Copyright 2016 Darla Noble. No part of this can be used or copied without permission from the author.