Mom's Release

The trials and tribulations of a mom of four great kids!

Brilliant Idea to Limit Chaos at the Dinner Table!

on January 12, 2014

Dinnertime is one of my favourite times of the day.

Or at least it used to be.

We make a great effort to eat all together…an increasingly difficult feat as they get older. It’s our time to all be together and chat about the day. I pride myself in being a good listener, but sitting at the table last night, I (sadly) realized I’m not such a good listener anymore. Six at the table, five trying to talk, all at once… I seemed to be the only one even attempting to listen. My brain was fuddled, the noise level was rising and it was next to impossible to hear anyone, let alone actually listen! The scene: the 15yo talking about his math test, the 13yo talking about her science test, the 10yo (who is so quiet it’s a struggle to hear her when she’s the only one talking) talking about reading, and the 8yo (almost screaming at this point because he’s decided it’s the only way to be heard at our table) about how “hard” his math homework was (not to be outdone by the 15yo)… then the hubby started in with the work chat…and my eyes started to cross!

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Then came my stroke of genius!

I raised my hand to speak (making them laugh and stop long enough to hear me) and said I had a great idea. I told them they each had a day to talk at the table, uninterrupted, about whatever they wanted…thereby making it possible to listen AND keep the noise level at the table to a dull roar. I even gave my hubby a day, so my eyes didn’t cross quite so often!

Oddly enough, they didn’t find it quite as ingenious as I did…but they said we could give it a try and so far, it’s been really funny. When we sit down to eat, they count through each other to see if it’s their turn and are so excited if/when it is! The quiet doesn’t always last long, but at least each gets a chance to get something out on their day.

My fingers are crossed it becomes a process that sticks!

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