The Family Dinner You Want vs. The Family Dinner You Actually Have

Adriana Velez | Nov 6, 2014 Food & Party
The Family Dinner You Want vs. The Family Dinner You Actually Have

family dinnerI just want to start by saying I am a firm believer in having family dinner. The real kind. Around a table, no electronics, home-cooked meal, conversation. The full shebang. But actually making that family dinner happen? Whoa. Most nights I am far from the ideal. I'd like to heap garlands of glory over those of you who actually pull it off on the regular. As for the rest of us, can we all just have a laugh together at what "family dinner" really looks like most of the time for us?

Have a look and then tell us -- which do you relate to more, the fantasy or the reality?

Image © Moore

  • Delicious & Nutritious Home-Cooked Meal


    Image © Heagney

    I see green food here! These people are eating right -- lucky them. I wonder if they'll adopt me and my son? If I ask nicely?

  • Delivery


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    Here's what happens all too often instead: "I'm ordering Mexican tonight. Those rice and beans you like, right? And that taco salad I got last time. And of course the extra guac. Can't forget that!"

  • Excellent Table Manners


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    Look at these well-behaved children with their neatly combed hair. I bet they say "please" and "thank you" every single time. They probably put their napkins on their laps. Ah yes, it is as it should be.

  • Kids Fighting


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    Can't you kids get along for five minutes so we can have a civilized meal? EVER??? Stop pulling your sister's hair this instant!

  • Enthusiastic Eaters


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    "Oh Mother, I love everything you cook for dinner. Absolutely everything! I haven't a single complaint. I will most certainly clean my plate tonight!"

  • Little Refuseniks


    Image ©Татьяна Русанова

    Ugh, when they hate what you're serving for dinner ... who made this child a food critic? That's what I want to know. And no, I'm not making a separate meal!

    More from The Stir: Why I Stopped Making Dinner for My Family

  • Fully Present Dad


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    Hey look, Dad's here! Not only did he get home from work early enough, he's actually done the cooking. Gee, thanks, Dad!

  • No Dad


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    Maybe your husband gets home from work late. Maybe you work odd hours. Maybe you're divorced. Maybe your kids' father was never there. You're on your own, lady. But at least you're not the only single mom eating dinner tonight!

  • Actually Using a Table


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    You're all sitting in chairs around that ONE piece of furniture with four legs. It is a literal dinner table. Wow, how did you pull off that feat? What did you do with all the mail, laptops, phones, gloves, hats, keys, and schoolbooks?

  • Sofa Dining


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    Dinner for two, à la sofa? Why yes, thank you! Oh well ... at least we're eating together.

  • Beautifully Set Table


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    Wow, all matching plates, glasses, and silverware -- with clean CLOTH napkins! Do you actually live INSIDE Crate & Barrel?

  • Mismatched Everything


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    Oh well, this is still better than eating on paper plates! And at the end of the day, no matter what your dinner looks like or how harmonious it is, I think we're all grateful to have something to eat and someone to eat it with.


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