good life – by annette spaniel
Part of cultivating a good life is gathering at the table.
Whether it’s a holiday dinner of 25, a family dinner of 3 or 4, a date night for 2, or an evening of take-out alone, I find great value in gathering at the table.
Specifically, on a day-to-day basis, the importance of gathering at the table for family dinner is immeasurable. For us it’s a space and time with no devices and we don’t answer any phones. We are present with one another. We take turns sharing something about our day. We vent. We ask questions. We plan.
I went to college 150 miles away from home. Randy and I were married at the time and commuted every weekend to spend time with each other. There was a restaurant we would frequent on the weekends as much for the great food as for the booth we sat at. It was the perfect size for comfort. It was the perfect distance sitting across from each other, looking eye-to-eye, not to be in each other’s space but to be able to really communicate with one another.
Fast forward several years later and we were in the process of building our first home. And what could be better than having a booth in our home that invites communication? We went back to the town where I went to college, measuring tape and drawing board in hand. We essentially re-created that exact booth in our kitchen. It’s still where we have family dinner almost every night.
The truth is it doesn’t have to be a booth that’s just the right dimensions. (Though Lance’s friends love coming to “Annette’s Restaurant!”) It can be sitting on the floor around the coffee table in the family room, standing around the island in the kitchen, or gathered around the picnic table in the garage. It’s about being together and taking time for one another.
We offer grace. We give thanks. We share love. We gather at the table.
Note from Becky
Oh, how I love Annette’s message. I personally have such a thing for booths. I will request a booth at a restaurant any day over table & chairs. And her thoughts about sitting down regularly to share a meal is something most of us need to hear. No distractions. Connecting. Only good can come from that effort / habit / tradition. Our team just adores Annette. She’s part of the ever-growing Project Life® family and is a member of our current 2014 Creative Team. Her son Lance was recently spotlighted right here on my blog, too. Project Life is very much a family thing for the Spaniels and I love that so much.