Posts Categorized: Rituals

The Family Part of Family Dinner

The whole concept of family dinner, if you think about it, is pretty elemental: you gather around a table in the waning hours, you and yours, and eat some grub, converse about your day and, if you’re lucky, life its ownself. But sometimes — or, most of the time — our dinners can resemble not so much a family of… Read more »

Moratorium Sunday

Is there anything better than looking at the calendar for the weekend and seeing a big huge block of…absolutely nothing? Somehow, last Sunday was the first weekend day in a little while that wasn’t spent shuttling the girls to and from birthday parties, or catching up on errands, or barreling north on 95, or south on the Taconic home from… Read more »

Let’s Have Coffee is the New Girls Night Out

When I first became a mother, there was a lot riding on a cup of coffee. As my husband once said of new parenthood, “We no longer get tired. We are tired.” For that first year, I was exhausted all the time. I was breastfeeding two or three times through the night, had little time to exercise (always key for keeping… Read more »

Sorry, I Have to Catch My Train

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve said this in the past eight years. The words probably give my coworkers the chills (or a clinical case of the eye-rolls) because unless the story I was working on was going to the printer or the magazine I was working for was breaking a big story, like, for instance, how to… Read more »

Crafts: Mom’s Dirty Secret

I hope you are thinking what I am usually thinking when I see kids playing with toys handcrafted by their mom: What a good mother…I hate her guts. But here’s the thing about crafts in my house. I like doing art projects with the kids — and because I’m working part-time now I can do more of them than I used… Read more »

Put Down the Book, or No Dessert Tonight

There’s a girl, all 42 inches of her stretched out on the family room couch, reading a comic book. There’s a dad or a mom, standing over her, failing to get her get her attention. “Phoebe.” No response. “Phoebe?” Not a muscle moves. “Phoebe. Come on. It’s time for dinner.” Crickets. “Phoebe! Put the book down. Time to eat!” The… Read more »

10 Reasons to Go Open-Face for Dinner

1. Because it’s arguably easier and faster than cooking up another pot of Annie’s Mac & Cheese. 2. Because the afternoon birthday party served pizza at 4:00. (What is up with these parties? Will someone please enlighten?) 3. Because the clock is ticking and the kids won’t be awake by the time your dreamy white wine sauce has reduced. 4…. Read more »

What Better Place to Be?

…than behind a stained-glass window of Fla-Vor-Ice tubes? That’s Abby peeking out from between the lime and the orange, both of which she made quick work of in one afternoon during last week’s heat wave.

Family Dinner Pep Talk, #428

I’ve been a runner for over two decades now. That doesn’t mean I’ve been a runner consistently for two decades. Or that I’ve run marathons or get up early to run the Central Park loop every morning like my best friend and mother of three (including twins) has done for most of her adult life. Since I was a teenager,… Read more »

I’m Having Fish Toniiiiight!

For a good long stretch, when the girls were little, Finding Nemo was in the DVD 24/7 and quickly became the Annie Hall of my 30s — it seemed as though I couldn’t go a day without quoting Marlin the Clownfish or Bruce the Great White, who belly-belted the titular line of this post (you recognized it, right?) before attempting… Read more »

Peanut Butter Five Ways

. Saturday afternoon, week before last, was one of those moments when you think, man, having kids is fun. I mean, it’s almost always fun and it’s not like hanging out with the kids on a sunny weekend afternoon is ever a hardship, but this was different. I feel like last Saturday marked some kind of occasion, a corner turned… Read more »

Table Manners for Grown-ups

Last week I was having coffee with a friend and we ran into a dad she knows from her kids’ school. Jenny, she said, This is Tom. He is the best dinner guest. I learned also that he is a writer. A film professor at a nearby university. But that’s not what stayed with me. When I saw him the… Read more »

Daddy Needs a Drink*

  Now that the swampy, soupy weather has officially arrived, it’s time to share a few heartfelt words about something near and dear to our hearts: the evening drink. When we got married, someone gave us one of those full-on Pottery Barn cocktail kits, the ones that come with the ten-gallon martini glasses and silver-plated shaker, stirrer, strainer, tongs, and… Read more »

Tea Party Dinner

This is not exactly a traditional tea party spread, I realize. What you’re looking at is all the makings of one of my daughters’ favorite dinners: The BLT with Avocado on whole wheat toast. The girls get to assemble right at the table and it’s almost always good for a giggle: Sandwiches for dinner? Mom, you’re craaazy! On this particular… Read more »

I’ll-Miss-You Granola

This might also be called “Thanks-for-having-me” Granola or “Congratulations” Granola or “Just-Because” Granola. Because once you taste the crazy good olive-oil infused concoction — as I did at my friend Melissa‘s house — you will want to make it for everyone you know for every occasion. So far, mason jar after mason jar has been filled with it and given to… Read more »

2 All-Turkey Patties, Special Organic Sauce, Greens, Cheddar, on a Whole Wheat Bun

Phoebe was about four years old the first time she walked into a McDonald’s. It was somewhere in Virginia, an I-95 pitstop on our annual 800-mile drive down to South Carolina from New York. I remember her wide-eyeballing the playground outside, the Wizard of Oz doll display inside. Before she had taken a single bite of food, she turned to… Read more »

Ingalls-Style Family Dinner

Question for you: Have you spent your entire tenure as a parent attempting to recreate the cozy, happy life of Charles, Caroline, Laura, Mary, and Carrie Ingalls? Their togetherness, their resourcefulness, their graciousness — their family dinners followed by Pa’s raucous fiddling?! (Please don’t forward me the New Yorker profile of Laura’s libertarian daughter, Rose, who, we know now, did… Read more »

Grill Week!

Just wanted to let everyone know that we’ve been firing up the Weber all week long in preparation for…Grill Week!!! starting on Monday here on Dinner: A Love Story. So whatever your Memorial Day plans are — whether you’re feeding kids, grown-ups, kids and grown-ups, bosses, or just your own darling little monsters, come back next week for some inspiration…. Read more »

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