Note: Over the next week, I’m going to take you with me on a meander through my day. No two days look alike around here, but this will give you a glimpse on my daily rituals of cherishing life. I do this very imperfectly. I would love to hear about your own rituals in the comments. And don’t forget to check out my favorite resources on the bottom of these posts.
I used to think dinner began when I put food on the table and ended when we were finished eating. Now I know better. If I plan that amount of time for dinner, I’m going to be rushing every night to put food on the table and I’m going to be looking at a messy kitchen at 10 P.M.
I have roughly a 2 hour window for dinner time. It begins with the preparation. I either have some kids help me cook or I listen to podcasts to be encouraged or learn something new as I prepare dinner. Each of the kids has a chore to get the table and drinks ready, so I concentrate on cooking and getting the food on the table. This is the only meal we eat together as a whole family, so we try to take our time with it on evenings we’re all home.
We have a list of favorite meals. Some have come from my menu planning subscriptions, some are old family recipes, and many are from various online sources. Sometimes I cook a special meal where we do china, crystal and silver just because. Sometimes my husband cooks a special entree or dessert for us.
Usually our meals are a protein of some kind, a starch or carbohydrate of some kind and vegetables. During the winter, we have soup and bread or sandwiches about once a week. We have dessert a few times a week, but I try to make them healthy desserts when possible like fruit, or apple crisp with low sugar or chocolate avocado pudding.
The cleanup is also part of dinner as well as preparing the next day’s meals and setting the coffee pot for morning. The kids help with cleanup and putting away food while I clean the rest of the table and kitchen.
The family dinner table is so important. We rarely miss a night of eating together. We have purposely kept from doing a lot of individual outside evening activities like sports or lessons because we value this time together.
Resources for Cherishing Dinner Time:
My Favorite Podcasts:
If you think food is just a fuel with no other meaning, watch this via Ann Voskamp: