Sunday, April 27, 2008

Hey boys, would you like a lesson on table etiquette?

That's exactly what every gal wants to hear her father ask her kids at the dinner table. I swallowed really hard, and exerted all my self control not to roll my eyes like a teenager. "Uh, sure" was their tepid response.
"Well, it's good manners for no one to take a bite of their food until your mother has taken a bite." The response from my eldest was immediate- "That offends me!" I stifled a snort. (That's his answer to every random observation. For example, "Hey D, I found those shoes you lost today." He'll reply, "You know, that offends me. I think I'll sue." It's his signature phrase right now.) So, back to the dinner conversation. My dad is rather formal where manners are concerned, so I'm curious how he'll respond. He doesn't have a chance. My six year old pipes up with "That offends me too. How about she doesn't get to eat a bite until we're all done eating?" "Yeah!" chimes in my eight year old. "We should start a cult that sacrifices stuff and Mom's have to eat last!"
At this point, self control is useless, and the snort I held in explodes. We all bust up laughing. My Dad's such a sweety, he took it in good grace. My boys just weren't up to that much wisdom at one time.


Anonymous said...

Is it bad to admit you've given up in this area? We just feed our kids and then sit down afterwards for an adult dinner the 2 of us and let the kids play, nearby. We've discovered it is the only way we get to eat without our food growing cold or insisting every 5 seconds that the boys stop bugging each other-we are official referees of the dinner table. I think I need a whistle! We do sit with them when they eat so that counts as a family dinner right? :)

Jana said...

Growing up in our house we just all ate after the prayer but my dad always waited for my mom to sit down after dishing the dessert before he would take a bite. And while he would never say anything we learned by example. It made me smile lovingly that your dad does the same. Now, I would try to teach my children the same, but....I never make dessert for after dinner. I only make things in a pan in which I just leave the butter knife so I can help myself at any time without anyone knowing because, you know, then they don't have to feel bad for not waiting for me.

Andy Jensen said...

Your dad is pretty daring to suggest such a thing as table manners to an all-boy family. Our boys are completely lacking in the art. We try to teach them, but when the 2-year old has learned the art of burping on command and does it after every drink, there's not much you can do. He just doesn't grasp the concept, especially with his two brothers (and, on occasion, even his father) giggling and snickering every time he does it. It only reinforces his desire to perfect the talent God has given him. Now you understand why we rarely have company over for dinner.

Anonymous said...

If we sit Gabriel in the high chair at dinnertime, he expects food, solid food, and often he would like the one on our plates.

Grandma is teaching him that when all of us are sitting at the table, he sits in his chair too.

So far he is pretty good about it.

Now, the Gospel class is a different story :)
Yesterday I had to pull him from the class and take him to nursery because he found a pen and he was poking the teacher's shoe with it.

Jenn said...

That was just too funny! I'm choking, laughing with my mouth open with my elbows on the table about it! Maybe Dad should visit here...