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It can be very instructive to see that as teenagers age, they seem to become somewhat more isolated. They might enjoy spending time in their rooms later into the night, which can feel somewhat upsetting for a parent trying to raise a loving family. For this reason, setting an important rule that family mealtimes must be taken together can help you connect with those living under your roof, and can prevent this sense of isolationism that can be worrying to say the least.
But it can be quite another story to actually get people around the table. With our small guide, there’s a chance you’ll be able to with complete and total diligence:
Regular timing for the family meal can bring everyone around the table, as no one has an excuse to miss it unless heading to a prior planned arrangement. Depending on your family set up, this might be earlier than later. If you have younger children as well as teenagers, the bedtime might be staggered. This means the evening meal might be more appropriate to take at 5pm or 6pm compared to 7pm or 8pm like many more mature families. Just keep the schedule regular. Doing so can ensure your teenagers make it a habit to attend.
Beautiful Dining Area
A beautiful dining area can mean the world to your kitchen space or seperate room. You might consider to deck out this environment. For example, a corndell sofa in the corner could serve as the perfect area to wait for dinner to be plated while the television plays or you discuss the day at school your child has experienced. A beautiful dining table on top of that with lovely chairs and a sense of occasion in laying the place mats and drinks can help this seem like a daily event. This is much more heartfelt and celebratory than simply grabbing a plate and heading to the living room to zone out and watch cartoons while eating. If you can, invest in a beautiful dining area. You won’t regret it.
The Art of Conversation
Of course, sitting and eating meals together is pointless if you don’t speak. While perhaps huge discourse that takes hours isn’t preferable, and while the flow of conversation might be a little stilted as people eat their food, asking about their day and generally having pleasant conversations on things where everyone is allowed to express their opinion can help you connect to your children, and can help your children feel listened to and respected. A little conversation goes a long way, so don’t be afraid to make the family dinner time the main hub of ‘the daily report.’
Involve Children In Mealtime
Ask your children to set the place mats on the table. Ask them to help you plate up. If they are interested, try to encourage them to cook the smaller features of the meal with you. It’s not hard to see how this can make meal time a cherished and group activity, rather than something you force upon them.
With these tips, meal time is sure to be a wonderful daily occurrence in your family.