As most would assume, it’s a place to come for quick and easy recipe ideas when we need someone else to do the thinking for us. In addition, it’s my desire is to create a place on the web that celebrates and elevates the importance of family meal time.
As we develop a mind set on how to create 10 Minute Dinners, my hope is that with the time we save in the kitchen, we’ll have more time to enjoy those special moments around the table, sharing life together. Many times over the last year, I have declared to my family, “We need to fight for our family meal time.” With five children, four of them teenagers, those times are becoming more rare as our schedules increase.
It’s a continual challenge.
For those with children, if there’s one thing I can encourage parents to prioritize is this precious time together. Decades later, this will be a pivotal time that your children remember, long after the hectic schedules cease.
When we gather together as a family over a shared meal, it’s a time of being deliberate with our moments. By unplugging and insisting on a technology free time together (which can be SO difficult), we come ready to share life as a family.
I want that, don’t you?
To make this easier for you, I’m excited to share something that has been part of our family tapestry for years.
Last year at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam, my free Christmas gift was to make that time as meaningful as possible by sharing our Family’s Dinner Questions tradition, and a free, printable Conversation starter question file. I’m excited to share it here because it will be perfect for the upcoming holidays.
For years, we have had a simple plastic jar filled with Conversation Starters and Dinner Questions on our table. It’s become a meaningful part of our family identity. Most nights that we gather together, we dim the lights, eat by candlelight, even if it’s just pizza and chips, and pick a question from the Family Dinner Question Jar.
We share answers that are silly, serious, sappy, sincere and even sentimental. It has run the gamut over the years.
Have fun with this time and establish your own tradition with how you want to use these questions. One person can pick a card and everyone can answer the same question, or every one can pick their own. It’s your time to embrace, and of course, these conversation starters aren’t just for dinner.
With over 220 Conversation starter questions already determined for you (ten questions per page), the beauty of this customizable file is that at the end of my questions, you may type in your own personalized questions making them fun and meaningful to your own family. Perhaps you have some inside jokes that would make perfect questions or story starters for your family’s Christmas gathering? Add those to the mix and get your group laughing.
As the holidays approach, this is a frugally perfect, meaningful gift idea for teachers, neighbors, friends and family. We have included pre-printed labels for you to add onto your choice of jar, box or bowl (see above). There are different sized labels and verbiage for you to choose, as well as blank labels, if you’d like to have your kids personalize it with their own handwriting, like “Schmidt Family Dinner Questions,” or even something silly like “Chat and Chow.”
Feel free to get as creative as you want with the jar. My dollar store plastic container has worked wonders for years. You may have the kids adorn it with their own crafty creations – glitter, glue, ribbon etc, or you may choose to make it a more elegant gift with a beautiful, glass container.
Details for printing the file: the question section of the file (pages 3 – 24) are perfectly formatted to print out onto 2″ x 3-1/2″ perforated Avery Business cards (10 cards per sheet). This will give you a very polished look, but if your desire is a meaningful, yet virtually free gift, print the file onto paper or card stock and cut them yourself.
Print out the Conversation Starter Questions onto Avery cards, card stock or paper. Add the conversation starter questions to your choice of container. Adorn your jar with its label, and then let the magic of family dinner time begin.
I can’t wait to hear how you enjoy this time together.
I love sharing this free gift with you and feel privileged if you share it, but please respect the copy-write. Please send friends to this Conversation Starters post, rather than forwarding the file.
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