The Ever Decreasing Dinner Table

Let’s face it, fewer families are eating dinner together. Why?  Sadly, the chase for the almighty dollar, after school activities and “keeping up with the Kardashians” takes thVKX6S4H5precedent. I found several different surveys that stated only 40-60% (a diverse margin) consume dinner together. Does Junior really need more “things” rather than your time?

Of course your child needs to find his/her own identity but are you doing so only to fulfill your ego (look what my kid is doing!) Think of the pressure you place on your son or daughter to be perfect, or fulfill your lost dreams!

Sitting around the dinner table used to be the best time to bond with your child and discuss their day. Now, the parent is so busy working and then picking children up after school and driving them to their next sports activity or violin lesson, that it’s easier to pick up a bucket of chicken then it is to prepare a wholesome meal. Families need to get back to basics or risk the loss of true values!

I realize that real life gets in the way, and who actually prepares a four course meal nowadays? Our culture has changed and convenience is the name of the game, but that shouldn’t give one license to eat unhealthily.

Is it actually difficult for a parent to fix dinner? NO! By the time one drives the car to the fast food destination, stands in line, pays, gets back in the car, drives home, prepares the table, changes clothes and finally eats, one could have prepared chicken cutlets, green beans, salad and baked potato and the family could help.

Another possibility is to use your slow cooker to create pasta sauces or chili so it’s ready by the time you get home. Or prepare a large salad on Monday, place in an air-tight container and it could be used for two days alongside sliced chicken or shrimp. You could also create a large pot of homemade soup on the weekend and have it ready for the work days.

Are you surprised that chili is on the list? Don’t be. Chili can be prepared with fewer calories by frying the hamburger, then placing it in a colander and sprinkling hot water over it to reduce fat and returning  it to the cooker. It’ll be more flavorful because the fat won’t coat your tongue. Kidney, black, pinto and chili beans are loaded with fiber and iron. There’s no fat in green peppers, onions or tomatoes, so why is it vilified? The same can be done with a huge pot of pasta sauce and used for future recipes. It’s a heck of a lot less expensive and healthier than fast food!

To save time you could bake a chicken, turkey or roast beef for Sunday dinner with plans to  create additional meals with the planned-overs. Then depending on time, you can prepare whole grain sandwiches, wraps, salads, burritos, tacos or soups when in a hurry.

It’s even okay to grill up a steak or pork chops. Simply select anything “loin” because it contains less fat than dark meat chicken. Grill kabobs with healthy vegetables while the quinoa is cooking, and you have one healthy meal.

Don’t give in to society’s peer pressure. Train your children well.  You’re the parent, declare that the family eats together, instilling family values that will last a lifetime.

“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”  (1 Corinthians 10:31)

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19 thoughts on “The Ever Decreasing Dinner Table

  1. Thank you! I wish more people would share this idea. I understand it’s difficult, as my family can’t do this everyday. Still, at least half the week my family and I bond at the dinner table

    As we eat, each person shares the highlight of their day, dream destination, or whatever else we decide to share. As indicated by the previous comment, this still occurrs in other countries. It needs to continue here too 🙂

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    • Oh Joe, how wonderful and truly blessed your family must be! You are a strong Christian father who understands and values of the family as God’s gift.

      Have you ever had the opportunity to watch the movie: Avalon? It’s a film that really stuck with me because it illustrates how the family unit has changed as society changed. I know you would enjoy it! Thank you for your comment. Blessings to you and yours,

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  2. People don’t realize the value of sharing a family meal together and how much closer it brings them. When my children were at home we almost always had dinner together during the work week and all meals together on the weekends. It is sad that people are in such a hurry today that they don’t even take the time to eat with their families. Time is so precious and we waste so much of it doing things that lack value.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s so true confident. I’m grateful to hear you had a close family relationship. Families must begin to realize what they are missing! And nowadays children have their heads buried into their cell phones (especially at restaurants) so there’s no sharing around the table either. When’s the insanity going to stop? So sad,

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  3. Yesterday I purchased ice cream (huge binge food for me) knowing it was not such a great idea. I also bought two bags of Valentines M&Ms to make cookies and hand out to friends. Well, the small container of ice cream I ate in one sitting and the bag of Peanut M&Ms I consumed in its entirely while watching tv last night. I cannot tell you the shame I felt. It is a part of the cycle. When I woke up this morning this verse came to mind. Lamentations 3:22-23- “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness”. Thanking the Holy Spirit for whispering this verse to me this morning and for you being a safe place for me to be honest and accountable.

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    • Great Verse! Wendy I say this with all gentleness because I care! Big deal, you made a mistake. Simply get back on the correct track and strive to be victorious once again. I’m sure you didn’t put on 35 lbs. in one day, so it’s no big deal. The BIG DEAL is that there are many underlying reasons for your choice which only you can answer.

      I know you can be successful, why do you feel you can not? The question you must ask now is “why?” What happened immediately before this that made you feel the need to self-destruct when you had been progressing so well? (a phone call, a memory, a fight?) What did the devil whisper in your ear that you believed?

      And why purchase items and bring them into your house when you KNOW they are your trigger foods? Are you scared and looking for an excuse to fail? Whatever you have done is not an unforgiveable sin but the devil wants you to believe you are unworthy of love and success. That is simply NOT true and yet you give Satan power over you, when God should control your thoughts and actions..

      Chocolate and ice cream not wrong, They are delicious and I recommend consuming it in moderation. What is wrong is that you give it control over you. Perhaps you feel by divulging this mistake to me that I will give up on you as many have given up on you in the past? Well, I NEVER give up on my true friends and I claim you as one. I would love you at 98 or 695 lbs. because you are funny, kind and encouraging to me! Blessings, now claim grace and get your butt back into gear! You never want to feel this way (ashamed) again.

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  4. Ellie,
    I love your honesty and your loving swift kicks in the posterior. Just what I needed. I have been thinking about some of the questions you asked, and I would say fear of failure is a big factor. And so is fear of succeeding. But my butt is back in gear now. You are a true friend, I mean that. I value you greatly. Hugs!

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    • Wendy, I want you to copy this famous motivational saying and place it on your bathroom mirror and you will SHINE!

      Our Deepest Fear

      “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.”

      “Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.

      We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous? Actually who are we not to be? You are a child of God.”

      “Your playing small doesn’t serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.”

      “It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

      ~ From the book “Return To Love” by Marianne Williamson

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  5. My biggest fear is arriving at a healthy weight and then not maintaining that. My biggest hurdle is how to say goodbye to an addiction that has been with me since I was a child. For me, food has always meant love and comfort. I know who I am in Christ, and I am blessed to have a great ministry here in my job, and serving as a leader in our church. I love living to glorify God. That is why He created us. My food addiction is a stronghold that I want to be free of. Your blog and posts have really been timely and I am learning more and more about my addiction. Thank you for the prayers!!

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    • So happy to hear that I’ve encouraged you. That’s a real blessing to me.

      You’ll enjoy my newest blog posted today too. With Jesus beside you, you shall NOT fail! What I do when I gain a few pounds now is automatically cut down because I know I like myself better healthy! And remember everyone was only 5 pounds overweight at one time before they spiraled out of control. With that in mind, maintenance isn’t so difficult if you strive to keep your weight within a range – because no one can stop on a dime!

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    • HI Erin, it is so good to hear from you again! Yes, it is certainly sad that families have lost that closeness. But then one can’t mourn something they never knew in the first place right? Where are the parents who care more about their family than money and prestige? Sigh. Oh right, I think they are homeschooling. Thanks for commenting. Blessings,

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