We all know how important it is for families together around the table together. It doesn’t have to be fancy, it doesn’t have to be a huge to-do, it doesn’t even have to be every day. There’s just something special about families sitting down, sharing conversation over a meal together.
It’s quality time on steroids.
But let’s face it. The evenings are busy. Parents rushing in from work, kids doing homework, the dog needs to be walked, deadlines to be met.
Mostly? There. Are. The. Practices. And. Games.
For us? It’s mostly football at this time of year…it keeps us way from home until 7pm four days a week. So over half of the week, all 7 of us aren’t home together until it’s time to start thinking about bedtime for the youngest family members.
Which means that family mealtimes just can’t happen, right?
That’s how I always thought about it until I read this genius article by Laura Vanderkam over at Fast Company, “The Delicious Case for Replacing Family Dinners with Family Breakfasts.” She makes the case for substituting family dinners with family breakfasts.
Suddenly everything in the world made sense again! We’re all home together in the mornings before school and work start. We kinda sorta already had our breakfasts together, albeit informally…and not always all together at the exact same time. One boy would be pouring his favorite cereal just as another was leaving the room, with kids parked haphazardly at the kitchen nook table and island. And, yes. The floor.
So while a formal family breakfast had never been a “thing,” it made a lot of sense and was certainly doable; we decided to give it a whirl.
Turns out we like to start our days together, gathered around our dining room table, eating a hearty breakfast together…like a mess of bacon and eggs, breakfast burritos (a great way to get some veggies into the morning meal), or pancakes topped with fruit. Sometimes we do have have bagels with cream cheese or cold cereal; it’s not always in the cards to fire up the stove in the morning.
The unexpected bonus? It’s a really grounding way to face each new day…it’s nice to carry the memory of our family assembled in the morning, laughing together and discussing the day’s plans. Or just as (okay, more!) likely- fighting over the last orange juice, sneaking the dog food, yelling over “borrowed” tee-shirts.
Still, we’re all together making memories. That’s what it’s all about.
In fact, we’re liking it so much we’ll be continuing it beyond football season just for the fun of it. Wait…that’s cross-country time. So we’ll be continuing it after cross-country just for the fun of it. Well, cross-country is followed by basketball, right? And then baseball?
Yeah, I think family breakfasts are here to stay.