Just this week I saw two pictures online that both basically tell the same story. The first picture is of a neat and cleaned up restaurant table that had served a bunch of middle school aged boys that the waitress said were polite, said please and thank you and their table was all piled nice and neat when they left.
The second table was a family(parents and kids) that left the table, the chairs and the floor littered with such a mess that another patron said that the young waitress just stopped and looked as if she just didn't know where to start cleaning up that mess.
The first table was a bunch of kids who probably eat dinner at the table and have learned to show respect at home and also towards others. The second table has parents that are setting a bad example for the kids they took out and probably don't eat together at the table at home. (yes, I'm speculating, and this is my opinion but I think it's pretty obvious)
I learned this lesson from my Italian Family... if we as parents don't teach the proper lessons and values at home-how do we expect our family to go out in public and not be disrespectful. You can't teach it in one sitting at a restaurant!
I started this piece stating that these two pictures tell the same story... and they do. They both tell the story of how much the family table influences behavior. Kids are sponges. What we pour on them, they will soak up.
Remember-the kids you are raising and teaching will someday be adults.
Will they be adults you want to spend time with? I love hanging out with my now "big kids" around our big Italian family table! Please take the time and raise the adults you want to spend time with too! You won't be sorry!
This picture could be a great topic of conversation tonite at your table! Which one does your family identify with? What changes can you make today?