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The Value of Dinner at a Restaurant

by Michele | October 16th, 2008 | Elementary
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I love to cook and have shared this love with all four of my children. However, there are benefits to the occasional family dinner at a restaurant.

As I enjoy cooking, having someone else make dinner for me isn’t really a benefit. But having someone else clear the table and do the dishes is a huge benefit! Plus, I don’t have to consider which child will complain about having to eat 3 bites of broccoli or which one will wrinkle a nose at the little piece of fat on the roast. Each gets to choose a meal that is pleasing to him or her.

Beyond these practical benefits, there is an even bigger emotional benefit- we all get to focus on each other. There are no laptops beeping the announcement of new email, and cell phones are put away for an hour. Plus, there aren’t dryers with clothes needing folding, math books with problems to be solved, neighborhood friends urging a quick completion of dinner, or a business project to be completed.

So, with full attention given to the family, there are great conversations to be had. Or maybe we just enjoy this idle time by playing a table game. Recently, I had a solo parent dinner with two of our kids, and it was wonderful. We had conversation and laughed. Sure, it would have been expensive to have eaten at home, but it wouldn’t have been the same.

Sometimes it is worth a few dollars more to create this happiness.

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3 Comments
  1. Gin says:

    I agree, eating out once in a while can bring that great family time. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Milehimama says:

    In America, eating at a restaurant is an important skill for kids to learn, too! How to order, how to tip a waitress, how to handle the check… it’s a fundamental part of our culture.

  3. Eryn says:

    I agree with Milehimama, if kids are never taken out to eat, they end up being adults that don’t know how to eat out at nice restaurants.

    Taking the kids with us when we go to an assortment of restaurants is something passed down to me from my parents. It was always expected that we would behave properly, and we always did. We can take the kids anywhere ๐Ÿ™‚

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