What better after a long day than to all gather around a table and eat and talk…..our busy lives don’t always allow for this, this rings true for me as I work several evenings BUT I make sure that when we are all together we sit around the table for a meal….even if it is beans on toast!!
This encourages talking, and talking is crucial to finding out just how we all feel. Asking open questions, how was everyone’s day? You could kick start it but telling everyone your day and then let the conversation intertwine. As a family listening and talking is wonderful therapy, offering CONSTURCTIVE advice, NEVER shouting someone down when voicing on opinion, merely pointing them in the right direction and educating them on their findings of “said” opinion.
You are encouraging free speech, social skills and social etiquette by sitting around a table discussing and eating.
Having fussy eaters can be so frustrating, but producing a meal, placing it in front them and starting a light hearted conversation will not draw attention to them not wanting to eat, the less attention you give a fussy eater, the more they are likely to try what’s been placed in front of them….I encourage you to do this when they first start eating, try some meals eating all together around a table, normalising social interaction at meal times.
When a child refuses to eat, tell them they will sit there until everyone else has finished, ask them questions about their day or their hobby, taking their mind away from eating, I used to drop messages in with my children, like “I was so hungry today, my stomach kept grumbling”…..”I couldn’t wait to sit round the table tonight and speak to you all and enjoy a meal.”…….messages of this nature will sink into their subliminal mind, making them hungry and relaxed.
Watching cooking programmes has made both my girls foodies, which again normalises eating food and normally displays the social event of eating.
Get your children cooking, using different ingredients, tasting along the way….it’s surprising how much more a child will try when cooking!
I appreciate some of you won’t have a table to sit round or the time…..but make it work for you, choose a meal time and make it work, talking is crucial to development of our mental state, and what better way to do it, than with a good plate of food.
If you would like further advice, do shout.
Love and Warmth
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