Today's guest post is by my friend, Karen Elliot. Listen to the insight and love she expresses as she reminisces about raising her children.
We have guarded our family supper time together for the past 25 years! Over the years, we have often enjoyed inviting others to join in with us, and now with our new daughters-in-law we are glad we have that set aside time to interact and get to know each other.
Our oldest son, not one to be willing to sit and chat for hours often thought it was his responsibility to get the family moving. After finishing his meal and feeling like he had adequate interaction, he would get up from the table and clear his plate. It was a little battle going on of who is in charge! My husband and I caught on to this and worked with our son on the concept of being patient, waiting for those in charge to lead. It is still funny today, to see him get up when he is done at a meal, clear his plate and then ask others why they are not done! Some personalities can stay seated only so long, and then they have to move. He is one of them.
One way we tried to interact with our children’s life in public school when they were in Junior High and Senior High, was listening to them answer the question: “What did you hear today that you didn’t agree with?” We wanted to know what went on in class discussions, in the teaching in the classrooms, and in their conversations with friends. It was a wonderful tool to help them look for things to point out to us as they went through their school day. It made them more aware that they don’t have to agree with everything being said.
We would discuss some of these topics at dinner, and come up with a good idea as to why they didn’t agree, and talk about how it is okay to disagree. It taught them not to fight with a teacher, but to come home, discuss it in our family setting, find answers and then own it as their own conviction, opinion or decision.
We have had a wonderful experience around our supper table for 25 years. We have appreciated teaching our children the value of meal time spent together. We have had numerous guests ask to return to our table because of how special the time has been for them. Now as we expand to In-Law children and grand children, we are maintaining our family meal times and the conversations that flow from them. We wouldn’t change this special time spent together for anything!
Karen graduated with her Bible Certificate and was working in the dental field when she married Bill Elliot. They worked together to create the opportunity for Karen to be a stay at home mom while raising their three children. Karen spent that time focused on raising, training and nurturing her children and loving her husband. She also obtained her certificate in Biblical counseling and, together with Bill, worked to enrich many lives and marriages. Bill and Karen are enjoying their first year of being grandparents to two wonderful granddaughters.
If you are interested in ordering the book Around the Table: Connecting With Your Family at Mealtimes you can go to the Home Educators Review page and follow their instructions for ordering for a 25% discount!
If you have the book, you can add your honest review to their page as well.