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Really curious about something

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 
When I was growing up, my parents always made it a point that we all get together every night and eat dinner at the table. It was always a homecooked meal, my mother was/is an excellent cook. We had to sit up straight, no elbows on the table, no reaching past other members for food, and ask to be excused from the table when we *thought* we were finished eating. If my parents wanted us to stay, we had to until they finished eating. Later when we were watching television- desert would be brought out on small trays and we would eat our desert in the family room.

Does anyone eat at the table anymore? Or is this a dying tradition?
post #2 of 35
Since there are only two of us, DH and I eat on the couch in the living room, unless we have company over, but both of us were raised to eat meals only in the dining room. 'Course, we live in a mobile home, and the couch is separated from the table by a end table and a dining room chair!
edit: we are about to move a house onto our property and renovate it, so I look for us to take up eating in the dining room again then, I don't know why, I just feel that way.
post #3 of 35
I grew up with that tradition as well. However, in my own life - I generally can't even FIND the dining room table. It's such a catch-all for everything. We generally eat on it twice a year - Thanksgiving and Christmas. It think if I had children it would be different. I would make a point of eating at the table with them every night.
post #4 of 35
Thread Starter 
LOL Heidi!
post #5 of 35
I was brought up, similar to you, hissy, when it came to meals. We always ate together as a family every night, and we always ate at the dining room table. Mom served all of the meals in dishes that she sat on the table. We didn't just take the food from the pan and fill our plate. I think that made for extra dishes to wash.

As we grew up, things changed. I personally haven't eaten a meal at a table, except in a restaurant or on holidays in my entire adult life.

I think except for special occasions, it's becoming a dying tradition.
post #6 of 35
Although there's only two of us, Joe and I pretty much always eat at the table each night. Both us us were brought up that way, and we really enjoy having the time to talk about our day...Joe is a great cook, and has dinner on the go by the time I come home (normally after 7pm).

post #7 of 35
I was raised in the same way, and 6 out of 7 nights my boyfriend and I eat a homecooked meal at our dining room table. If he wants to watch a game or we rented a movie we'll eat in the living room, but usually I've spent so much time in the kitchen because I love to cook that it's just easier and nicer to set the table and have a nice meal there where we can talk.

I do believe though that this is a dying thing, as none of the couples we're friends with ever do this. Well they don't cook homemade meals to start with!
post #8 of 35
As often as I can keep my oval oak table cleared of Frej's books, bits of projects etc., we eat at the table. And we always have insisted on "no paws on the table", no cats helping themselves to what they think are leftovers on a person's plate..

Seriously, if we had had children, I would have made homecooked meals, we would eat together, there would be conversation and manners would be used. I would not have cared about elbows on the table but would have asked that one excuse themselves before leaving the table,

bet this dates me...
post #9 of 35
My children all sit around the table and eat dinner. Admittedly I don't often sit down with them. I'm busy serving the babies, wiping up spills, etc etc. As soon as they're a little older I fully expect to sit down with them. I DO make sure to have conversation at the table even if I'm not exactly sitting. As to the homecooked part..wellllll, define homecooked in this day and age. Do I usually prepare whatever we're eating? Yup. Is it usually a 2 hour prep meal? Nope.
post #10 of 35
We sit to dinner each night, although hubby is usually missing as he doesn't get home till around 7 which is too late for the kids. But my children sit down to eat, and I usually sit with them. On the weekends or any other time David is off, we sit as a family either at the kitchen table, or in the formal dining room.
post #11 of 35
Hissy, I was also raised with the family eating dinner together at the table. I did it with my children when they were smaller but as they got to be older teens (17 or so) we slowly quit doing that over time. I truly think it is a dying tradition and that is very unfortunate. The world is too busy and too fast paced and we all have our own lives. Kids have soccer, swimming, football, volleyball, etc. etc. And we are all, for the most part, working. I think it's part of the modern breakdown of the family. Just my opinion.
post #12 of 35
As a child of the 60's with two working parents (unusual at that time). . . . we did somehow manage to sit down as a family on most nights . . . . I remember having to ask to be excused when finished. Wow have times changed.

Today. . . . we're lucky to sit down as a family (I'm a single mom of 2) twice per month. . . . and it involves clearing the table of of mail, newspapers, magazines, . . . . you name it. . . first.

We often eat on the run. . . . late at night. . . . it sucks, but it's the American way I'm afraid . . . . trying to burn the candle at both ends. Subway, Pizza, McDonald's are common evening meals. . . sometimes we dine in (if this counts as sitting down with family). . . .

If I could stay home. . . . . I'd cook home-cooked meals every day. . . . and would sit down at a normal hour. . . . but I'm afraid this will never be reality so long as I'm a single mom struggling to make ends meet.

post #13 of 35
We sometimes used to sit at the table to eat but now there are TV's and Computers.. So sometimes I will just slouch infront of one and eat! We always eat food in front of the TV at Nana's it's kind of a tradition and the Dining Room table isn't big enough for Christmas Dinner so we all sit in the lounge!
post #14 of 35
When I was a child, my parents and I always had Dinner together at the table. The manners aspect wasn't as stressed- elbows on the table was no big deal and there was always a lot of laughter, I remember that vividly.

However, my hubby and I both work- and its rare that we all sit down together and eat. I usually throw some things in the crockpot to slow cook all day while we're gone, and then the kids eat as soon as we get home from picking them up at the sitters. Hubby and I eat when we get the chance, sometimes not until pretty late. Meal time is not a time that we plan for in a big way and look forward to.Honestly some of my favorite nights are nights when we get take-out. Its after dinner has been eaten and the kids have had their baths that we have our quality time. I only get 2 hours with them in the evenings most days, so eating is gotten over and done with as soon as possible.

I guess it kind of is a dying tradition, with so many working families
post #15 of 35
we make it a point to eat dinner at the table every night
post #16 of 35
When I was growing up, dinner was always served at the table. Occasionally, my brother or I would be at sports practice or out, but we never ate in front of the TV. Even today, I eat at the table here (eating on the couch just feels weird) and Dad and I eat at the table when I go home to visit.
post #17 of 35
We usually ate together at the table, especially when I was little. When my dad started traveling all the time, it was a little harder to do, and sometimes my mom was just too tired to do a nice meal, since she was the only one really taking care of the kids.
post #18 of 35
Bill and I eat at the table. Our table is in the family room and we watch the news, while eating dinner. Since Bill goes to bed so early, we eat between 5:30 and 6:00.

Growing up, my parents didn't allow eating anywhere EXCEPT the kitchen. As the family grew, through marriages and grandkids, adults were allowed to eat off of the coffee table and the picnic table became the "kids' table". As a smoker, I usually opted to eat outside, with the kids. Here, in Tucson, one can eat Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners outside.
post #19 of 35
when i was at home with the family we all eat at the table, but i think this is dying away, peoples lives is too busy, kids in so many sports and wifes and husband working different shifts, things have changed for most of the people, my hubby and i eat in the living room, we have breakfest at the table, but that is only once in a while. we eat the holiday dinners at the table with the family, i think that is still going on with most people
post #20 of 35
What is a dinningroom table? I don't even own one. We (when we get the chance will usually get fast food, not good for the diet but hey it's fast(usually). Honey is trying to cook more but with our schedules chashing, we don't eat together much once in awhile. I never cook!(not unless I call the fire dept in advance and warn them!LOL) We have all sorts of cook books though, why? who knows. I only open them if I want something different. then it's shopping I go!
We usually either eat in the computer room, or in the bedroom in front of the tv. we are really lazy that way. We still talk and laugh and things, but not at a table. It's a dying tradition that sitting at a table, but if you do it, maybe your kids will too!
post #21 of 35
lets see, I get home from work. We hop in the car and drive somewhere to pick up dinner. Then we go in the bedroom and I eat sitting on the bed and he eats sitting on a chair infront of the tv with a tv tray infront of him I would really love to start having sit down meals again!

Desert??? what is that we never get desert
post #22 of 35
I LOVE cooking, provided I'm not sick or struck down with bronchitis as I am now.

My fiancee and I sit down at the table each evening to have dinner. I generally am the one who makes the homecooked meal. Prep work doesn't take long and since we both work, the meals made don't take longer than 15-20 minutes to cook. Though on weekends when the universe decides that I have the time, I try my hand at roast chicken or an exotic curry that takes hours to cook so that the flavours are able to infuse themselves into the meat. I even put together a Japanese dinner party for two one weekend.

The tradition isn't dying at my place. It's well alive. It has to do with both of our upbringings. I know that he also ate at the table and excused himself when he too thought that he was finsihed. Though I never had to excuse myself, I was always last to finish, still am. And when Christmas and Chinese New Year rolled round, the house would be full of relatives and family friends. But I always found myself in the kitchen watching the food being prepared, smelling the herbs and spices and how they intermingled with each other and the food they were added to. Mmmm...getting hungry now...
post #23 of 35
Originally posted by hissy
When I was growing up, my parents always made it a point that we all get together every night and eat dinner at the table. It was always a homecooked meal, my mother was/is an excellent cook. We had to sit up straight, no elbows on the table, no reaching past other members for food, and ask to be excused from the table when we *thought* we were finished eating. If my parents wanted us to stay, we had to until they finished eating. Later when we were watching television- desert would be brought out on small trays and we would eat our desert in the family room.
Sounds like my household growing up with dinner promptly at 6:30, although we were only allowed to watch TV on Sundays.

We eat most of our meals today on TV trays unless we have company, then we do the full table spread and generally follow the above protocals.
post #24 of 35
When my brother and I were younger we always ate as a family, at the table. No exceptions. We still do to this day, when I go over on Sundays.

At home me and Jim just eat at the coffee table in front of the TV My kitchen table is pretty much my mail station
post #25 of 35
Ted and I allways eat at the kitchen table.it was the way we were brought up,and it is when we can talk about our day.
post #26 of 35
You know it's funny you ask this here, cause my cats actually got me back to the dinner table. We were getting into the bad habit of sitting at the TV, I don't have kids. But now my hubbie and I go to the table and are more formal cause we didn't want the cats to jump in our food. I like it better and Dr Phil says eating in front of the TV makes people eat more. I did grow up eating at the table with everyone in the family soI know what you mean. And I do think it's sad that tradition is dying. I wonder why? Too much stress I would think.
My Mom didn't work. And I am sure even needed a project to do in a way so wanted to make a full meal! I do love to cook and if I didn't work full time I would make more elaborate meals.
post #27 of 35
We grew up with the same tradition, and if I didn't finish everything on my plate I wasn't allowed to leave the table. Any time fish, mushrooms or asparagus was served (I love all of them now, LOL) I slept at the table. Dad would carry me up to bed, because I always woke up there.

As adults with no kids living in an RV, we don't even have a dining room table anymore. First it came out for the "office." Then we got laptops. Then we got cats and replaced the "office" with cat furniture.

post #28 of 35
When growing up my family sat at the table. Now there is just me, but I still set at the table for supper.
post #29 of 35
I grew up with that tradition as well! We all sat down at the kitchen table and ate our food...and all the food was in serving bowls. But with hubby and I we just get our food right out of the pans off the stove and usually eat in the living room while watching TV. I want to change this now that we have a child and start sitting down at the table to eat, but old habits die hard. I think when she is old enough to actually sit at the table, I am going to try to change things...I think it is good to sit down with your family and eat a meal without watching TV or taking food into the living room to eat. It should be a time to share what has happened in our day and spend some time together. I also feel bad because I was taught to pray (say Grace) before each meal, and I usually forget to do this! I need to do better about that! I feel guilty when I see families in a restaurant holding hands and praying before their meal, because I was also taught to do this and have gotten so bad about remembering to do so.
post #30 of 35
We used to always sit down at the table. Now we don't really, unless we have ppl over. Everyone has different schedules (although I'm the only one who has to work nites). We used to have it all set and everything. We had to excuse ourselves after we were done. We never had the punishment of sitting until everything was finished on our plates, but we did finally figure out that (especially at Thanksgiving/Christmas/Easter etc) that when we had turnips (aka rutabagas, which none of us liked) if you took a teeny little spoonful and a whole lot of mashed potatoes, and butter and gravy and salt and pepper, and mixed it all together, you couldn't taste the turnipss really. And this from all of us kids who eat everything in sections: Veggies first (cuz they get cold the fastest and are gross when they are cold), then potatoes then meat. Mom asked us once how/where we learned to eat that way b/c she didn't teach us that way! And all of us do it too! Now we are lucky to actually eat a whole meal...usually when we have some "good" food (homecooked actual food) I'm working and very seldom actually get leftovers. At Christmas time, at my grandma's, the adults were usually the only ones to sit at the table. We had a little table set up for the kids so we'd sit there. Now we still have a kids table, even though we are all over 20 now lol It's more fun. We are all the same age, ranging from 20-27 I think, so we all have lots in common. Anyways, enough babbling from me on this subject lol
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