Something I've noticed about having all our meals from home, is all the extra meals we've been blessed to have together as a wee family (just Jono, Bella and I at the moment, as the other girls are based in London now). Typically we're ships in the night with Bella, but having this time together for meals has been really lovely.
We decided as a family at the start of lockdown, that we'd try and keep making meal times a priority, and make them feel special. Here are a few simple ideas of how to do this - well at least what's worked for us so far. No doubt everyone has a different way of doing this in a way that suits your family, so don't take these as the gospel, they've just become a bit of a habit for us - we'd love to hear what works for you.
Make use of what you've got!
You know all those things you have put away in the cupboard that you only get out on a 'special occasion' or for guests? Make use of them! Why not make your Monday lunch turn into a special date with the family. Whether that's getting out that table cloth you only use x3 times a year, a succulent or plant, using your favourite placemats, your special cutlery, whatever it is that you can use to make the setting beautiful. Your table will come to life, and you'll finally get your money's worth for all those things you bought yonks ago.
Pictured above is what we're using at the moment, including placemats & coasters we sell at Flo, you can see them here.
I know this might seem like a no brainer - but so often we forget to add candlelight! When we do remember though, the atmosphere is so much lovelier in my opinion. With day-light saving finished, it's darker earlier, so this is even more of a reason to get that dim lighting going.
We're working our way through a gorgeous Glasshouse candled called 'Arabian nights' which smells like heaven, and you can see the rest of our Flo candles here
Put some foliage in the mix
One of the best and cheapest tips to making a meal setting come to life, is by adding foliage! We often 'prune' our hedge to add to small glass jars for the table, as a little bit of greenery goes a long way in upping your table aesthetic. As a bonus, we agree this makes us feel more connected to nature, appreciate our home, and calmer in general!
The good thing is that it's not too hard to find garden bits and bobs in a city like ours, even your local park will have just the thing you need (without killing off half the tree obviously).
Switch it up
Last but not least, we try and eat dinner at a different spot in the house each night, and rotate. This keeps it interesting, and means meals don't all blur into the one. Have you got a coffee table covered in things? You could try clearing it and turning it into your low dinner table and eat on your knees/using cushions for a rustic vibe (see above). Otherwise, we set the kitchen bench up nice and pretty and eat there, alternating with the dining room table and there. In saying that, this is particularly easy for us as there's just 3 of us, I can imagine with a big family you'd think this idea of mixing up your meal locations is less than ideal. For those that can though - give it a go, you just might like the change.
Pictured above is our favourite tableware from Robert Gordon, which we've used for a soft taco night, yum!
I hope you're able to enjoy some peaceful meals with your 'bubble mates', during this time.