I often spend my Friday nights watching Blue Bloods on TV. I grew up watching Tom Selleck on Magnum P.I. and of course listening to Good Vibration by Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch – also known as Mark Wahlburg. Tom plays the father who is the police commissioner for the NYC police department; all of his five children, Mark, playing one of them, work for the law system in one position or another.
In every episode there is always one or two family dinner scenes. All of the family members live at separate residences, but they make time for each other to break bread together. I understand this is pure fiction, but for me it is art imitating my life.
I was introduced to Barbara Coloroso‘s Kids Are Worth It video when my oldest daughter (Number 1) was only two and half years old. In the video Barbara stresses how important it is for families to eat one meal together, every day, even if it means showing up at your child’s school to eat lunch with them.
Breaking bread, as a family is something I have done my whole life. I grew up doing it at home with my parents, when I spent time at my grandparents and today raising my family. Eating dinner is a time where our family talks about world events, town events, school events and everything in-between. Dinner in our house is about family. Some nights we have roast beef with all the fixings and other times it is tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches. The important part is that we are together.
I have been able to keep the tradition going even when my husband has been away for three tours, numerous courses and training – don’t get me wrong there have been many moments where I want to pick up my plate and go eat my dinner in my room. In bed, watching TV. But I don’t. The pay off I believe is that we have a close family – as close as one can be with two teenagers who can’t stand their parents. We all participate in dinner preparation and clean up. Everyone has their task to do to make it all happen and rarely do any of my children miss dinner.