I’ve been lucky enough to grow up with a family that has always made family dinners a ritual, but I know a lot of people haven’t. Thanksgiving is an entire holiday devoted to family dinner — seeing people you love, spending time with your family. It may sound hokey but it’s important to take advantage of that time. This is a very busy time of year, and it’s not always the easiest thing in the world to make time for dinner, especially when you’re trying to plan around a lot of different schedules. People get busy! So for one day — a national holiday, so you don’t even have to take time off to do it — won’t it be nice being able to sit together, even if it’s only for a few hours?
Studies have shown that children who habitually eat with their families are at a lower risk for engaging in risky behaviors as adolescents. These same studies argue that children who eat with their families are happier, too. Family mealtimes help parents interact with their children and vice versa, and some studies suggest that families that eat together are less likely to be overweight. In my family, dinner time is a time to talk, or even just relax, but more importantly, to be together.
Having a national holiday dedicated to eating as a family is amazing, and I’m counting down the days until it’s time to carve up a turkey. But more importantly, I am looking forward to spending time with my family. Living away from all them, I find what I have missed most is mealtime.