How a Piece of Wood with Four Legs Changed My Life
The oven is still warm from toasting the garlic bread and melting the cheese and herbs into a delicious combination. The stove is still hot to the touch, having been used to cook the spaghetti al dente and heat the meat from raw to well done. The empty gallon bottle that used to contain milk sits on the countertop, waiting to be brought to my garage for recycling. The kitchen is quiet, with only the radio playing soft rock tunes to break the silence. That is, until my mom calls out, “Supper is ready!” Suddenly, the room is alive with noise and life as my dad, sister, and myself emerge from our homework, television programs, and electronics. Every night, my family eats at our kitchen table, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Sitting with my family at a brown wooden table with chairs that might not be in the best shape, but are full of comfort and memories, might seem unusual to some people. To me, however, it is something I’ve been doing my entire life. In my family, we don’t tend to go to eat at a restaurant very often unless we are already out and about. Unless it is someone’s birthday or another special occasion, we are found at the dinner table every night. This has to do with the way my parents were raised. Neither one of them spent a lot of time dining out every night, so naturally they are bringing my sister and me up the same way.
However, these meals aren’t just the microwavable heat-and-eat ones. My mom loves to cook (she even worked in a bakery for a while), and shows her love for us by preparing fantastic food. The meals are balanced; a typical dinner consists of meat, a side dish such as rice or mashed potatoes, vegetables, and whatever fruit is in season. Over the years, she has let her daughters participate in the cooking as well. A few hours ago, I helped spread shredded cheese, green peppers, and onions over red sauce and crust that was baked into an amazing pizza. It took less than fifteen minutes, and for sure tasted better than one that was store bought.
Eating together every night has brought my family closer in uncountable ways. We take turns discussing the day, homework, and what’s going to be occurring later in the week. The mood is typically lighthearted and loving; this is something I will miss next year when I will be off at college. Someday, I plan to emulate this with my own husband and children at the dinner table as much as we can. No television or phones to distract us, simply a caring atmosphere with good food and great people.