3 Ways to Revolutionize Dinner Time

Dinnertime in our household is definitely one of the most chaotic times for us. I’ve heard this from a lot of my family and friends. When the kids get home from school and the work day ends, so begins the challenge to get dinner on the table.

I’m not going to lie – it can be a bit of a mess. Sometimes the kids are tired and there’s whining about homework. Sometimes, and let’s be real, it’s me who’s doing the whining. When tummies are growling and people are exhausted it makes sense that our moods would plummet.

Growing up my mom always had a nice dinner ready for everyone. God bless her, I don’t know how she did it. But I have good memories of dinner time and I really really want the same for my kids.

I’m probably not alone in this, am I?

Over the years of parenting, we have found some things that have worked to make this time of day better for us.

Revolutionize Dinner Time, Family Dinner Time, Meal Time, Family Meal

Push dinnertime back

Now, I know what you might be thinking. They are begging you for food at 5:00 p.m. and you’ve got to get a meal on the table. This is why snack time is your friend. When kids get home from school you need to give them something that will fill them up for awhile. That way, you’re not rushed to make dinner right when everyone gets home. I personally like to eat early. But I’ve noticed if I push dinner back just by thirty minutes, everyone eats better. Plus, you don’t feel like a chicken with your head cut off!

Say no to technology

Resist the urge to let your children play with their phones/tablets at the table. You may obviously get some push back on this but I really put my foot down on this rule. I mean, we have all day to be on technology. We should have a few times that are super important to actually look at each other and connect. Family meals should be one of those. All technology is turned off and put away while eating dinner. And one person can’t get up until all the others have eaten.

Implement “Good Things”

Sometimes you need to spark a conversation so we started what we call “Good Things.” We simply go around the table and say at least one good thing that happened that day. This puts an immediate positive spin on things no matter what happened throughout the day. I know I’ve been sitting there before thinking, ugh, nothing good can come of this day. But when we start “Good Things” it forces me to think of something. Even if it’s just, “sitting here with my family eating dinner.” That’s a very good thing! The kids absolutely love this and now if we forget to do it they will remind us ūüôā

So see, just a few simple things that can truly revolutionize your family dinnertime experience!

My Biggest Regret and How I’m Fixing it Now

Regrets – we all have them. I know I have my share.

There are many¬†little regrets. The chances we did or didn’t take.¬†The choices we made or didn’t make.

As time passes, we appreciate what we learn from our regrets and challenges . But the big ones are a reminder of our opportunity and power to change.

One of my biggest regrets that sticks out to me is¬†ignoring my own needs for so long. You see, I knew I needed to take better care of myself. Eat healthier meals, exercise regularly, get enough sleep. But as a mom, I thought¬†the right thing to do was to put everyone else’s needs above my own. That’s what moms do, right?

Well, now I know I was wrong. Last year, I found out there were consequences.¬†I learned my lesson the hard way – through a health crisis. But now that I’ve come through it I can finally make better decisions.

healthier-me

I recently trained to run a 5k and try to be active in some way¬†every other day. It really makes me feel so good to know I’m doing something amazing for my body and my brain. An active body (through physical activity) and mind can improve brain health, and help you avoid brain problems like stroke, dementia, confusion, or memory loss.

Gosh, what I wouldn’t do to have my twenties back so I could make better decisions that would affect my¬†Brain Health¬†now!

The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association defines a healthy brain as a brain that is functioning at its best, free from disease and is receiving normal blood flow and oxygen levels.

I don’t ever want to take my body or my brain for granted again. I want to keep things sharp. This isn’t a phase or a fad with me. It’s a¬†healthy living¬†lifestyle change that needs to stick! Eating and sleeping well and being¬†physically and socially active can reduce my risk of stroke and heat disease.

I’m also trying to eat healthier so I can function at my best. With three young kids and being on the go a lot, it’s definitely not easy. But simple changes like choosing fruit instead of a cupcake can help. Eating almonds or blueberries is my favorite healthy snack and I love having grilled fish for dinner.

I don’t know about you but taking my health for granted is definitely one of my biggest regrets. I’m thankful that by making changes those regrets can fade away. No matter what your regrets are in life there are ways to overcome them. Thank goodness for the passing of time and a willingness to change! I’m ready to move forward and do better.

Healthy, Run, Brain Healthy, Exercise

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of American Heart Association / American Stroke Association. All opinions are 100% mine.