Anyone who knows me well, knows that I LOVE to bake and cook. Give me a good recipe and a quiet kitchen and I am in my happy zone! :) Oh, who am I kidding? I am happy any time I am in the kitchen and realistically, my kitchen is never quiet. It is usually filled with the background noise of the TV, radio, and three children running in and out. I enjoy every part, except the clean up. If I could just get those three children to clean the mess while I sit and enjoy a cup of coffee.... Isn't that what happens in other homes??? :)
Family meals are on my top priority list. However, the busier life gets and my husband's work schedule makes family dinner time almost impossible. The kids and I typically have dinner together but even that has started to change. What really happens is that I serve the kids and then I end up hovering and playing waitress. The only day of the week that we actually get to eat as a family of five is Sunday.
I decided a couple of weeks ago to shake things up. It took a little effort on my part because it required me to wake up earlier than I prefer (I believe I beat the roosters). But what we have gained has been well worth it.
I decided to have a family breakfast instead of a family dinner. In the past, our breakfast has consisted of a fast bowl of cereal, pop tart, or granola bar. There is nothing wrong with this, families are so rushed in the morning. However, I figured if I put a little more preparation into it, we could manage to have one family meal a day.
The past two weeks have been filled with wonderful mornings. I get a good amount of piece and quiet while I cook breakfast because everyone else is still in bed. As much as it hurts to wake up earlier, it is worth the peace and quiet in the house. I have been excited to see everyone's face when they come downstairs to a pre-set table. We hold hands as a family and say a prayer. The kids have been eager to lead the prayer. Our youngest son said the prayer this morning. It was so cute and heartfelt.
"Dear Jesus, Thank you for our day and for this food. I love you God and I cannot wait for Jesus's birthday. Amen."
My word, I am more than happy to get myself out of bed early if I get to start my day with prayers like that!
It also makes me feel great to send my husband off to work with a great breakfast in his belly. I know that sounds very June Cleaver-ish, but it is true. He works crazy, long hours (especially this time of year). It is nice to know how much it means to him.
So, in a nut shell, family meals can be anytime of the day. Meals around the table bring so many blessings. This morning I made a great meal, spent quality time with my family, and listened to an amazing prayer from a six year old all before 7:15am.
I have always said the kitchen is my favorite part of the house and feeding people is my love language. :)
** Oh, and my hubby has been great with the cleanup!