I think this might be my favorite part of the day.
Growing up, we had a family dinner around the table nearly every night. I didn't always love it, but I learned to appreciate it - and one of my goals as a parent was to continue the tradition.
I love every bit of it. Making a homemade meal for us all to enjoy. Asking Cole to help "set" the table (which means handing him the spoons, which somehow manage to get dropped on the floor at least twice, before ending up carefully set in their [wrong] place on the table). Helping Cole climb up onto his booster seat so he can sit at the table with us like a big boy. Telling Chris all the bits and pieces of our day while we eat our food, minus any distractions of TV or music.
Sure, it's a bit more work - a few extra dishes, maybe missing a favorite TV episode. But it's all worth it to have our family's undivided attention on US. To laugh at Cole's dinner antics of chewing his bread with his face all squished up. To enjoy my glass of wine and conversation with my husband while Cole watches and listens. He's learning that we value him, that we value each other, by having that time. He's learning amazing table manners (he uses a napkin and silverware with better manners than many adults I know!).
It's a huge change from the years of our newlywed days of take out, eaten on paper plates while sitting on the sofa watching TV...but I wouldn't change a thing.