Last night I tried a little art experiment at dinner-time. Before the boys came in to set the table, I spread several sheets of butcher paper across our kitchen table and set out a few pencils. They were so excited when they saw it and both of them commented that it was like “being at a fancy restaurant.” Ha!
I was a little worried that the drawing would distract the kids from eating, but this turned out not to be a problem. I think it helped that I was serving a favorite meal (spaghetti and garlic bread) and that we were all very hungry, but the kids dutifully ate while we all doodled.
Dinner is often prime bicker-time for my boys, but the drawing distracted them and we all had a nice time talking about what we were making and building on each other’s drawings. When dinner was over we all cleared our dishes, but the empty spaces where out plates had been called us back to the table for more drawing. Augie wanted more color on the table so he ran back and forth to the art cart grabbing big handfuls of markers and colored pencils for us to use. We ended up drawing and chatting for another hour and a half after dinner was over!
This is probably not something I’ll do every night, but we all enjoyed it so I know I’ll do it again in the near future. Maybe it will become a spaghetti dinner thing?
What do you do to make dinners more special for your family?