Monday, August 29, 2011

The Hour that Matters Most

I recently read "The Hour that Matters Most" by Les & Leslie Parrott with Stephanie Allen & Tin Kuna. I have read several books by the Parrotts and was excited to delve into what they considered the importance of dinnertime. Staggering statistics reveal that the idea of a family eating together at the dinner table on a regular basis is quickly becoming a dying concept.
Recently married, I have been on both sides of this issue. Growing up, we always ate what was the quickest to prepare, frequently fast food, in front of the t.v. The only time I really remember eating at our dining table was when we had guests over or it was an important holiday, such as thanksgiving. When my husband and I married, we decided that we would not allow ourselves to become the typical American family today. We wanted to cherish our time together by having quality conversations and creating lasting memories with our children. We promised to always eat together at the table, except by rare occasions something special was occurring. We've loved it and really enjoyed it. With a young child, and another on the way, I've become less proficient though at creating wholesome, well-planned meals, which why I was very excited to read this book.
One of the chapters is about freeze and fix-it meals, something I have long wanted to do with my family. It motivated and encouraged me to start planning meals ahead, so when things get crazy, my family isn't eating frozen prepacked meals made by a company, but rather something good I created.
This book is great, although I defiantly think it would be better for someone with older kids. I felt as if I couldn't relate to many of the chapters because my daughter is so young: "cultivating deeper values," "how to listen so your kids talk," "curbing conflict at the table".
Stephanie Allen and Tina Kuna, sub authors, own a prepare and freeze it company, "Dream Dinners" and I felt throughout some of the book their company was pushed forward a little too much. They did include some recipes in this book, but I think I would be more willing to share this book with others had there been more. Overall this is a great book for a working mom who is desiring to have home-cooked, nutritious meals but just needs a little motivation and encouragement.

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