Once upon a time, Sukha (who crossed the rainbow bridge earlier this month) taught me the value of sitting at the table and eating a meal with loved ones. Sukha refused to eat her breakfast on the floor like a normal dog. She required a seat at the table.
The Hobbit (my husband) and I have a sit-down breakfast together almost every morning. I am a firm believer that breakfast is the most important meal. Our sit-down breakfast not only provides necessary protein and nourishment, it provides a beautiful space for us to connect with each other, look each other eyeball to eyeball and set our day up with the reminder that our time together is sacred and top priority.
30-minutes. One-half hour. 1/48th of your day.
From cracking the first egg to finishing the last drop of kombucha and coffee, I set aside approximately 30-minutes each day for cooking and eating breakfast. We have a rule in our house, the cook doesn't clean, so after the meal, Hobbit does his part by washing the dishes. His full time commitment is also about 30-minutes.
It's not a long time, but committing to this one simple practice makes a HUGE difference in our everyday lives. It helps that I like to cook, and breakfast is my favorite meal, and that Hobbit doesn't mind cleaning.
Benefits of Sitting Down to Breakfast
The benefits of sitting down to breakfast together are countless. A 2018 Harvard research showed that benefits far surpassed simple nutrition and health benefits, but reached into family function, relationship connection, and so much more. This article details several scientifically proven reasons families (and couples) should eat together.
Today, I sautéed a bunch of finely chopped veggies (red peppers, green onions, asparagus, spinach). Hobbit likes hearing the sound of me chopping veggies, and I get a simple mindful pleasure in chopping veggies into perfect little dices. I fried four eggs over-medium and put them over the veggies with a side of our favorite salted rye toast. I added some shredded mozzarella cheese, a squeeze of lime, a sprinkle of seasoning and fresh-cut slivers of thai basil. I serve every breakfast on the GOOD china, because why not?
I have a whole recipe book of 20-30 minute breakfast goodies filed away in a special place inside my brain. Someday, I hope to publish it in a book for you. Here are just a few of our faves:
blueberry-lemon fluff-a-lump (Hobbit's word for dutch pancake)
breakfast tacos - scrambled egg and veggie hash in toasted flour tortillas
fresh fruit with noosa yogurt, granola, and chia & hemp seeds
avocado toast with cilantro & lime
bacon & cheese egg-bites or egg-bake (make enough for all week)
Almost every day, Hobbit takes the first bite and gives me the look of pure mouth pleasure. I think partially he does the look because he can't help it, and partially he does it because he likes the look that I get on my face when he is happy. His look makes my look, and my happy look makes his happy last longer. We spend the breakfast in this feedback loop of happy looks back and forth at each other, interrupted only by the occasional puppy distraction.
While Tosha (our ten-month old corgi) doesn't have a seat at the table (her tiny corgi legs can't jump that high), she does wait patiently for an occasional bite. And yes, she does eat politely off a fork!
It is now rare that we skip breakfast together. I think perhaps because when we do, everything in our world feels really off. Here are just a few of the benefits we have noticed about our mindful practice of daily sit-down breakfast meals.
deeper sense of connection
healthier food choices
we eat more fruits & veggies
more focused and productive with our workdays
overall general happiness
better portion control
better time management through our day
a feeling of less stress for time and effort in our day
I challenge you, commit to 2-3 days this week where you set aside 30-minutes to cook and eat breakfast. At the end of each day, jot down a few notes about how your day went. I'd bet you'll notice a significant difference in the days you eat breakfast and the days you don't.
If you'd like tips and tricks to help your family commit to a sit-down breakfast, book an appointment with me to discuss your family dynamics, needs, and I will mentor you through a fool-proof plan to make mindful meals a part of your everyday life.
If you struggle with your relationship with food, I suggest you book a Mindful Eating Mentoring Series based on the simple lessons I learned from Sukha.