In this modern world, it is so easy to let family time fall to the wayside. In between work, homework, extracurricular activities, housework and everything else, it sometimes doesn’t occur as a priority to get the whole family together with no phones, no TV and just to bond over an activity.
That’s why Chris and I have started implementing a Sunday night family cook off. It’s not as competitive as it sounds, we get the kids involved in the preparation of Sunday dinner and chat about our weeks and any problems we are having. it is such an easy way to get everyone together and talking and helping each other and really creates a bond and a special time.
As the kids are only six and four, sometimes it’s not easy to come up with tasks for them to help with, most of the time the things they do aren’t really to help at all, but just to make them feel involved and to learn the importance of doing things for themselves. they usually wash the potatoes and vegetables or ‘help’ me to prep the chicken. They enjoy it and even seem to be developing a love for cooking! They must take after their mother.
As well as Sunday night cook off, we use the kitchen for breakfast and we always try and get everyone sat down to eat together at the breakfast bar to ensure we start the day off right. Sometimes Chris will be away on business or have to start early at work, but for the majority of the time, he is there and we eat a full breakfast of homemade granola and fresh yoghurt, fruit, my very special croissants and homemade jam. On Fridays, I cook up a full English breakfast to mark the start of the weekend, and everyone always looks forward to it!
I think it’s really important to get high-quality meat if we are cooking an English breakfast, as supermarket bought produce is often pumped full of water and incredibly salty, I would recommend shopping around the local butchers in the area to find great cuts of bacon, lovely sausages and black pudding. Eating this special breakfast on Fridays gets everyone excited for the weekend and sitting down together allows us to discuss our plans and find out what it is that the kids want to get up to that weekend.
The kitchen is the heart of the home and can be used in so many ways at the centre point for family life. Whether it’s cooking together, eating together or just a place to relax and socialise, the kitchen is perfect for providing a place to bring the family together in busy times.
As the kids get older and are able to socialise without a chaperone, it will get even harder to find time for family time, but the kitchen will always be open and welcoming to them and they can be assured that if they need family, they will find them in the kitchen.