When I was growing up we had dinner every evening at five o'clock and you better not be late! Now a days families are lucky if they eat as a family even once a week. With so many cooking shows on TV and 30 minute meals in cookbooks, there are no excuses for not eating and sitting down together as much as possible.
It might be a struggle to get everyone to the dinner table for a family meal. Keep at it, your hard work is paying off, according to an article from "Better Homes and Gardens", March 2010 article. Adolescents who participated in regular family meals five or more times a week reported healthier diets than kids from families who rarely eat together. Their meal patterns were better too, setting them up for a healthier adult future. Below are ways to get the family to sit together for meals:
Involve everyone in the process:
1. Let everyone suggest their favorite meals.
2. Make a weekly menu together.
3. Cook together or pair up with different family members.
4. Have weekly or monthly cook-off competitions.
5. Older children can try and cook their own meals.
6. With everyone participating cooking will hopefully be more exciting and inviting
7. Try Annabel Karmel's new, "Top 100 Finger Foods", for easy kid-teen-tween friendly recipes.
8. Determine that dinnertime will be a relaxing time to talk and enjoy each others' company.