This is what our table looks like at dinner time.
We're not the typical American family, sitting around the dinner table, sharing stories from the day.
You won't find us gathered here, Walton style, with mounds of mashed potatoes, steaming hot rolls, and fried chicken lining the table.
When the dinner bell rings at our house, the sound of "set the table" has been replaced with "someone set up the TV trays!"
There you have it......I'm sure I've shattered the vision of some, but it's the TRUTH!
Oh, we've tried to fit the mold, but it's just not who we are! Although every now and then I will force everyone to try it, just to see if we could be "that family", but it feels like wearing a dress......stiff and "not me"! So the next night we're back where we want to be.......in front of the TV.
You see, when you homeschool and Dad's office is at home, and everyone is there together multiple hours of the day and night, you don't need to gather around the table every evening to find out what's going on in each other's lives. It's not necessary!
We know what's going on - every minute of every day! It's one of the perks of being at home!
When it's mid-morning and my boys start talking about their life, I'm essentially "at the dinner table".
When it's lunch time and we're all in the kitchen together, I'm "at the dinner table".
When we're all gathered in front of our favorite sitcom, laughing and comparing characters with our own family members, "we're at the dinner table".
When we're at the table with school books gathered around and Dad comes through the room, singing, making jokes, or just generally interrupting us, "we're at the dinner table".
When big brother barges in little brother's room while he's trying to concentrate on long division and a fight breaks out......."we're at the dinner table".
We are experiencing life together, every day - all day, because of our lifestyle, and it's so much fun and so fulfilling, that we don't have to gather together, for 45 minutes each night, to know what's going on. We are living it 24/7!
If gathering around the dinner table is supposed to be the end-all-be-all for families to stay together, then we really need to re-evaluate what needs to change in our homes.
There is nothing wrong with eating at the dinner table, but I hope, for your family's sake, that you are spending more time than that, laughing and living and connecting on so many other levels than just over the mashed potatoes.
For this family - we're sticking with the TV trays, the goofiness, the non-traditional ways, the togetherness, the annoyances, the non-Walton's style, that we have come to love.
It's who we are, and we like it!