Save a Seat for Dad
The benefits kids reap from family meals include higher grades and lower rates of obesity and drug use, studies show. So Cameron Stracher, then a corporate attorney and now author of Dinner with Dad: How I Found My Way Back to the Family Table, vowed that for one year he would cook -- and eat -- dinner with his wife and children five nights a week, come hail, high water, or rush-hour traffic.
Q. What motivated this culinary experiment?
A. I had a high-pressure job and a killer commute and was missing out at home. I'd leave before anyone else was awake and return after they were asleep. Plus, my wife and I fell in love making food together and I wanted to recapture the magic.
Q. Sounds simple enough -- but was it?
A. I took a financial hit because I had to drop projects requiring travel. Ultimately, though, it was matter of modifying my work habits. You don't have to take that last-minute phone call -- you can turn off the BlackBerry.
Q. How did this undertaking affect you as a father?
A. It made me an equal contributor to my family life. I never wanted that Leave It to Beaver situation where the husband works and the wife cooks. When my 7-year-old asked, "Daddy, what's for dinner?" I knew I'd done the right thing.
Originally published in Ladies' Home Journal, July 2007.
SAVE EVEN MORE! Say “Yes” to Ladies' Home Journal® Magazine today and get a second year for HALF PRICE - 2 full years (22 issues) for just $15. You also get our new Ladies' Home Journal® Family Favorites Cookbook ABSOLUTELY FREE!