family dinners

Photo by fauxels on

Gathering the family around the dining table is a staple of mid-20th Century family lore. As one of my elder friends once described it, mealtime is eating, laughing together, and learning from one another. Where this sort of experience might be rare today for working parents, it is where we, now as grandparents, have an advantage. Time is not rigid. We can make the time to have family join us now and again for food and fun.

Having family nearby made the last seven days better. With Comet’s passing, one of our work cars warning a major component was failing, and the home central air going out (at the start of the hottest week of the year), it was a difficult week emotionally. Yet all of our kids, at one time or another, made the time to visit us. With the AC patched up and house cooled, we enjoyed a family dinner to celebrate two of our sons’ August birthday. My contribution was taking a list of needed ingredients to the store. And making salad dressing. For vegetarian Tommy, his mother made two dishes. I also brought home a baked chicken, as optional “garnish”, for the carnivores among us.


At the table, and afterward, we conversed about babies, family memories, fatherhood, motherhood and current events. Our grandson’s request for Gramma to substitute the vegetables for some eggs made us chuckle. Zander explained to us that Gramma always makes him eggs when he comes over. (What he did not say is that she makes him eggs when he fusses about the lunch or healthy snacks he is given). He ate the vegetables.

Overheard explaining to his sister and Uncle Tommy why Comet is not with us anymore, he then mildly protested that his sister was touching his Playdoh. His mama’s gentle reminder that she was in charge of the Play-Doh, and allowing Serena to play, ended the protest.

last month, first steps

Standing by herself at the Fisher-Price table, one fist speckled with blue Play-Doh, Dexter caught Serena’s eye. Squirming out of Gramma’s arms, our little adventurer crawled toward him. With uncle Tommy and I shepherding, Serena happily “pet” Dexter and poked his fur. Zander also pet Dexter till his Uncle Tommy picking him up, set him on his shoulders. Zander only protested for a moment. Perhaps his cautiousness is being challenged by his little sister’s boldness?

Gramma and parents decidedly took advantage, when Uncle Tommy had both Zander and Serena in his arms outside, to navigate the children toward the car and car seats. We made our goodbye’s, satisfied that a family dinner is a pretty awesome tradition.


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