This post represents a compensated partnership with The Family Dinner Project. All opinions are my own.
In today’s busy connected world, when do you take time to talk as a family? Growing up, we always took a few minutes at the beginning of the day to have a bite of breakfast and then came together at the end of the day for family dinners. As my brother and I got older, family dinners could have fallen by the wayside because of sports practices and games but somehow we still managed to connect. The same is true of my family today.
Despite busy travel schedules, kids’ sports practices, and other evening activities, we make time to have conversations around the breakfast table or over a shared dinner. It doesn’t matter if I’ve spent half the day making a grand meal that’s served as Sunday dinner, we’re eating the previous night’s dinner as leftovers, or going out for pizza. It doesn’t matter if we’re laughing over the antics of my kids’ classmates on the playground or discussing more important topics related to world events. We’re talking and connecting as we’re eating together during a time that’s beneficial to kids of all ages.
This is the goal of The Family Dinner Project. With a mission to inspire families to enjoy food, fun, and conversation together, The Family Dinner Project is honoring Giving Tuesday (December 2) and the holiday season by inspiring dinner-oriented acts of giving.
Yesterday during a webinar for Giving Tuesday, I shared some tips for parents who want to make giving more of a priority in their families. The first tip? Have a conversation. I believe that talking with your children about the ways your family supports causes is just as important as modeling charitable giving. Often times these conversations start around the dinner table. Kids are quite perceptive and have the capacity to understand things on a deep level when presented in an age appropriate way. Revisiting topics by talking about them in various ways as kids get older only furthers their understanding.
And that’s what the Family Dinner Project is all about. Food. Fun. Conversation. And giving. Giving to family members as well as those outside the family.
This year you’re invited to kick off the #FamilyDinnerForward initiative by participating in a fun contest. Simply snap a dinner/giving-related photo and share it via Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #FamilyDinnerForward.
What are some things you might want to snap a photo of and share?
- Cook (or buy) a meal for a neighbor or someone in need
- Invite someone for family dinner
- Collect and donate food items to a food pantry
- Help deliver meals via a community organization
- Cook a meal together at home, where everyone has a job. Think of this as a gift to the person who primarily does the cooking!
- Give the gift of meaningful conversation. If you need help having a conversation about how to give, visit The Family Dinner Project’s Giving Tuesday site for helpful conversation starters.
- Talk about giving during family dinner and show us what you decide to give this
Share as many photos as you like and all photos tagged on Twitter or Instagram with #FamilyDinnerForward between December 2-16 to be entered to win prizes from Lenox! Two winners will be drawn at random and will receive four 4-piece plate settings of the Lenox Entertain 365 pattern of their choice with an estimated value of $344-400 depending on pattern chosen. Please note that this contest is only open to US entrants only.
Have fun, be creative, and I look forward to seeing how you celebrate #FamilyDinnerForward