From as early as we can remember we have been sitting down to a meal at roughly the same time every night as a family. When we lived with our parents and now when we visit the routine is the same. Dinner is on the table between 7-7:30, you eat what is served and you stay at the table until you have been excused, which is usually long after the food is gone.
In the early years, dinners weren’t fancy. As single paycheck household, that got paid once at the end of the month, meal planning and budgeting was the name of the game. Quintessential 80’s fare like tuna noodle casserole, ham steak and lasagna made the monthly rotation.
When the purse straps loosened up and hard to find ingredients became a little easier to find the meals became a little more exotic for our Midwestern table. Compared to many of our friends house’s we looked like something out a fancy magazine.
No matter what was put on the table family dinners were, and are, a time of sharing and storytelling. The main place our parents taught us life lessons. Some obvious and direct others were delivered almost by osmosis and subtleties. I am sure we will share more of those stories in what will be a recurring feature, the hour of reminiscing.
This is a tradition we have both kept up in some form or another. Getting together for a meal is a special ritual where memories are shared and built into traditions.
If there is one thing that molded us into who we are today it is family dinners. The weeknight requirement kind, the yearly manners-required dinners at the grandparents and even the TV dinners of the 80’s are what made us and connected us as a family.
What are your family dinners like now, any traditions stuck around from your childhood?
What traditions have your family meals given rise to?