Family Matters: Four ways to bond during holiday dinner!

One of my favorite things about the holidays just so happens to be one of my favorite core values of my business and that is the fact that food brings families together.  The past couple of weeks we’ve talked about how being so busy during the holiday season can stress us out and cause us to miss the experience of living in the moment. Well, if you’ve learned anything about me by now you know that one of the most important holiday moments in my eyes is dinner.  It’s not just the food that makes it important, however. It’s the idea that, for this one time of year, family puts everything else aside in order to actually enjoy each other.  However, there are still things vying for our attention alongside dinner.

Cleangoodeats - Family Matters - Four ways to bond during holiday dinner

From football games to smartphones, there are a number of things to distract us, making it even more difficult for us to focus on good old fashion conversation with our loved ones. But lucky for you, today I have come up with a few ways you can encourage family interaction during dinner so that everyone has the opportunity to live out what this holiday season is really all about!

A. Institute a “no tv” rule during dinner – I know the men and women who enjoy a good football and basketball game are reading this and shaking their fists at me but I have a compromise: how about scheduling dinner during a time your favorite team isn’t playing? Gathering around the t.v. and watching sports has become so commonplace during holiday dinners that it’s part of American tradition, but when dinner is served, make sure the t.v.’s and all things with a screen are off.

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B. No social media at the dinner table – This should be a rule 365 days of the year anyhow but especially on Christmas. If there’s anything we need a break from, it’s our cellphones.  Today people can’t even enjoy their meals without putting them on social media for everyone else to enjoy first.  Hold the food posts…but don’t Instagram your picked over and eaten plates either. That’s just wrong.

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C. Make a seating chart – Make a fun seating chart where you place family members next to each other who barely get the opportunity to talk and see one another if possible. It’s so easy for us to gravitate toward the people we’re most comfortable with.  Shake things up a bit this year!

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D. Encourage everyone to share – Not their food, but a story! One fun way of engaging everyone during dinner time is to go around and have everyone share something. Since we’re on the brink of an entirely new decade, why not do something like have everyone tell the family their best accomplishment from the last decade, or their big goal for the next decade? These are just suggestions. There are so many conversation pieces you can use over family dinners!

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These are just a few ideas to make sure you and your loved ones live in the moment of Christmas dinner. And hey, don’t be afraid to carry these traditions over into the new year and use them during weekly family dinners as well! I guarantee you your family will grow stronger because of it.

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