When the Man Who Cooks and I met all those years ago, the preparation and consumption of food was a shared interest, dare I say, mania. Because we were students we lived in a small apartment, with a table in the tiny kitchen to serve as a dining table. Occasionally we would turn the tiny "living room" into a pretend dining room. Oh, for the day when we'd have our own house which would of course have a separate dining room.
That eventuated, and we always set the table nicely, including candles, a ritual that has even become a habit with our sons when they were old enough to understand. Dinner was the time when everyone was present, none of this trend of each person heating up their own meal at various times (our household is one of the last holdouts in the developed world NOT TO HAVE A MICROWAVE). There was always conversation, catching up with everyone's day, maintaining that family togetherness. (Sidetrack: recent research has pointed to decreasing time children spend talking with adults as a possible reason behind the fall in children's language development and that the fact that modern families often don't eat meals together means less opportunity for adult conversation).
Now things are changing in our household, especially the first half of this year with Techie Son studying overseas. Number One Son is now in a job with odd hours which often has him working from late afternoon to midnight, so he too is often missing from the dining table. That dining table, and the dining room, now appear way too large and lonely! And although I would have never thought this would happen, the two of us find ourselves gravitating back to our comfy and cosy kitchen for the evening meal.
I guess a lot of people have gone through this...
Some photos from our student days in our apartment. This must have been a special occasion. A tablecloth on a card table does wonders! (I've just figured it out: These first two photos were taken in August 1973, so that was probably my 28th birthday)
My sister made my dress, with a beautiful appliqued animal (?) on the front. Unfortunately I outgrew this dress years ago.