When I was growing up in my parents house with my 3 sisters, dinner time was an event. It was a group affair. Mom would start dinner. She stayed at home while my dad worked on the farm all day. She made everything from scratch. The four of us would trickle in to help set up the table.
She would yell at us for snacking out of the salad bowl before dinner started. I distincly remember getting my hand slapped for that on more than one occasion. That was and still is one of her biggest pet peeves. Every night we would sit down to the best dinner one of the smallest kitchens (sans T.V.) in existance. We would eat and talk and tease each other.
Occasionally, the teasing would lead into a small food fight. Yes, I am embarrassed to say that I may have missed one of my sisters now and then and regrettably ended up whipping jello on the wall of my parents kitchen. Laughter would erupt; we would get into trouble. We would have to clean the whole kitchen including the walls, by ourselves.
Fast-forward 20 years. My husband and I both work. We both love mountain biking...for the workout, the freedom, the time spent in nature, the smell of the pines, the feel of the air, for the rush. It is a blast. We both feel so lucky to have a hobby that we both love. We can do it together and it is good for us. It gets us outside.
The downside to having jobs and having a hobby that we both like and can spend an endless amount of time doing, is that our time around the dinner table suffers. We tend to make a large portion of something once or twice a week and eat the leftovers for a few days. The good thing is that we love Mexican food. We have probably eaten burritos for dinner 80% of the time over the last year. We are using fairly heathly ingredients (chicken, blackbeans, corn, cilantro, tomatoes, cheese, potatoes), but some of them come from a can instead of being fresh. We also love to have salad every night.
Regardless of what we eat for dinner, we do not spend the time at the dinner table like I did when I was little. It feels like we get home and race through dinner so we can sit down and relax. We need to change our mind set so that we incorporate relaxation into our meal instead of hurrying through it.
I also love the idea of buying locally and eventually growing some of my own produce. I need to figure out how to make that a part of my life. The websites from the link for this essay are a great way to get started.