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*This post is sponsored by Harry & David Gourmet. All opinions are my own*

I’m one of “those” moms: the mom who is always researching parenting and implementing everything that is recommended for a healthy and happy childhood. My family is always making fun of me – but I’ve accepted it!

I’m fully aware that – realistically – the way that my children turn out has almost everything to do with their own hearts and Who and What they choose to put first in their lives.

But I do want to do my best to instill godliness, morality, independent-thinking, kindness and wisdom into their hearts at a young age (and while they’ll still listen to me.)


As I’ve read and researched, there is one thing that I continuously come across that I can do as a parent, which is statistically and scientifically proven to: improve mental health in our children, decrease rates of depression, improve their physical health, enable an advanced vocabulary and drastically increase achievement in both sports and in school.

So what on earth could be that crucial to our children’s well-being?!

Have you guessed yet?


The answer is: Family Dinner.

Family dinners give children the opportunity to talk about their days, to see their parent’s interact and laugh together.

It gives them the chance to hear about real-life responsibilities and to discuss ways to be kind to others, the importance of working hard and living selflessly and graciously.

Most importantly, you can use this time as parents to share and remind them of the gospel through both word and action. It is incredibly crucial and life-changing time for both us and them!

Studies have proven that regular family meals at the table lower the risk of teen pregnancy, lower the risk of substance abuse, lower likelihood of obesity as well as eating disorders and create higher self-esteem.

And, gosh, I know how hard it can be to make this a regular thing. I know what it’s like to have your mind racing with all the to-do list items that you could accomplish in the never-ending amount of time that your sloth-like child finishes their meal.

But once it becomes a regular routine in your home, I truly believe the impact and joy of it will cause that to-do list to disappear.

We don’t do this perfectly as a family; we simply do it to the best of our ability. There are a lot of nights where Jesse works late, so it’s just the boys and me. There are evenings when Sutton is having a meltdown, so he ends up eating in the bath.

But we’ve personally experienced the positive impact that family dinners have had in our own lives between the four of us.

We also have a weekly ‘family dinner’ on Thursdays with our in-laws and siblings which have blessed me more than I could ever say.

So when Harry & David Gourmet gifted me with a variety of their delicious meals, I knew that I wanted to bless my family with some decadent food for family dinner!

These extended-family-dinners that we have on Thursdays give the kids an opportunity to play with their cousins and for their grandparents to pour into them. It gives Jesse and I the chance to spend quality time with our siblings and parents and to receive wisdom and encouragement from them.

Do you have the ability to implement an extended-family-dinner in your home once a week? Or even once a month?

Are you able to be more intentional about having sit-down family dinners every night with your husband and children?

I encourage you to begin a new routine with your family. And of course, the food will rarely look like this, but when it does look like this, it’s worth photographing. 😉

 

Harry & David Gourmet was kind enough to send two Steak & Lobster Feasts which exceeded our expectations and made us feel pretty fancy. 😉 They have launched a new collection of gourmet food which is created for everyday entertaining. The meals are SO easy to make and taste like they took hours to cook.

I definitely over-cooked the lobster by boiling it (whoops!) and have learned that steaming lobster is the best way to go! But my family still enjoyed it with delicious melted butter on the side. I’m pretty sure my mother-in-law ate at least 4 lobsters by sneaking them away from us – so that was a win! ;-).


On another evening, we had the opportunity to try Harry & David’s Lobster Stuffed Shells Feast and their Filet Mignon Dinner for Two.

The Filet Mignon Dinner was our favorite and came with an assortment of spinach and cheese, mushroom, and Gruyère pastry appetizers. We pan-fried the bacon-wrapped filets mignons in onions and garlic to medium-rare and paired them with the two delicious sides. The meal came with Gruyère & Garlic Mashed Potatoes and Black Truffle & Almond Green Beans.

For dessert we had the Chocolate Decadence Cake which is crafted in the Harry & David bakery. The cake was a little rich for my taste, but Sutton is a choco-holic and devoured it!

Harry & David Gourmet Meals are SUCH a great idea for holiday gifts! You can design an occassion tailored to your budget as prices range from $10 to $400. If you have family that lives out of town, this is such a sweet treat to have delivered to their door. Friends of mine had the great idea to sent a meal to their siblings who don’t have family around for the holidays and it was such a blessing to them!

Whether it’s a savory side dish, a dessert or a whole spread, Harry & David Gourmet has everything for entertaining with ease and include over 200 products!

Friends, whether you have a delicious gourmet meal or re-heated pizza for dinner, I lovingly encourage you to do it together as a family – around the dinner table. You will make more of a difference than you know.

 

 

With Grace,

Lindsey

Click here to receive my FREE Recipe eBook with Sugar Cookie Blueberry Cobbler, Pecan Pumpkin Bread with Maple Glaze, Creamy Spinach + Artichoke Dip with Garlic Cheese Toast + more!

Lindsey Maestas is a Christian based out of Albuquerque, NM. She is a wife to a loving husband and a stay-at-home-mom to two sweet little boys. She received her degree in Journalism and is a writer for the faith-based lifestyle blog, sparrowsandlily.com. She loves Jesus, event planning, baking and binge-watching Netflix with her husband. Find her on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.