Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Table for two, please.




December is usually a month for setting tables. Table for holiday gatherings, table for family dinners, table for guests. For some, the table is like an empty canvas, ready to become art. The center piece, the arrangement of colors and dishes, all framed together to invite people in.

Restaurants usually have a flickering candle, crisp white cloth napkins and dimmed lights to set the tone for a relaxing meal. They know that more than food, they are selling the experience. They know that it is about targeting the 5 senses: eyes with beauty, ears with melody, touches with cleanliness, noses with mouth watering fragrances and mouths with explosions of flavors.

Maybe there is a hint in there on how to feed a toddler. I love the website Weelicious because they figure out ways to attract little senses to healthy foods. Another one is LunchBoxAwesome where you have pictures of creative lunch boxes that will certainly attrack little mouths.

However, last week I decided to have a restaurant night at home, after the kids went to bed, and set a table for two. Cheaper than to hire a babysitter. Cozier than to go out in the cold. I set the table after the kids had dinner but before Luke went to bed. He walked into the dinning room, gave a serious look at the nice china neatly organized, ice cubes floating atop fresh water with lemon and a lit candle on the center of the table and asked: "Is that for mommy and daddy, and the boys go to sleep?" Giving the fact that I had not said anything about my plans to him yet, I was surprised that he had figured out what was going on. So I just answered: "Yes" while hoping there would be not too many complains and requests following. Not this time. He just answered: "Ah..." and went to bed happily knowing that he was part of the "boys" group, which don't waist their time with fancy dinners but are happy to go to bed to snuggle their blankets and bears.

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