Summer is officially here, with its days spent building sandcastles at the beach and t-ball games in the evening. Summer has a way of starting out long and lazy, but then it quickly gets filled with activities and impromptu get-togethers, and it’s all those things that start to interfere with family dinnertime.
It’s easy to get into the habit of picking something up while you’re out anyway, stopping and grabbing something to eat between your daughter’s soccer practice and your son’s baseball game.
Before you know it, family mealtime can fall to the wayside as summertime activities fill your schedule.
Why Dine Together as a Family?
Family dinners serve several important functions. Studies have long shown that children who sit down to dinner together with their family are less depressed and get better grades than their peers that do not. They are also less likely to become addicted to drugs or alcohol.
Beyond those studies, preparing and serving a family meal also gives you control over what is going into your children’s bodies. Focusing on real food is important, and eating a diet high in fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains and low in preservatives and deep fat fryers goes a long way in maintaining our health and energy.
How Do You Make Time?
So, we know it’s important to eat well and eat together, but how do we manage this in the midst of summer? The answer is not to always plan on being home every day at dinnertime, though that would also work. Instead, plan for the unexpected meals on the go.
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