Billion Family Dinners Challenge grateful heart monday sponsored post

Family Dinners – Making the Time & Joining the Movement.

September 14, 2015

When you’re married to someone who doesn’t work a 9am-5pm job but rather more like 8am-midnight, finding each other at dinnertime can be tough. When you’re BOTH in a job that is more of that 8-midnight schedule, finding each other to share meals can sometimes be near impossible.

Christian and I have pretty odd schedules; we work at odd times and while both of our offices are in-home, when your jobs are creative, you basically work when the creative bug bites you. Since it’s just the two of us for now, it would be really easy to kind of do our own thing for meals, especially dinner. It would be easy for us to come and go in the kitchen as we please, taking our food back to our offices and continuing to work while we eat. Yes, it would be easy – but I’m so glad that we refuse to let that be the way.

Today, I am especially grateful for family dinners – the ones shared with family and the ones shared with friends who’ve become family.

Christian and I have always made time for each other over meal-time; some days we come together for lunch, other days it’s for dinner, but we always make sure to meet each other at the table for at least one of the two. This is the time when we leave all electronics in our offices, we don’t talk about work or our to-dos, and we simply catch up, pray together, and enjoy one another over a meal. And I have to tell you, it’s one of my most favorite times of the day. No, it’s not always easy but we decided early on that this would be an important part of our relationship and therefore, we choose to make the time, we choose to make it happen because we know how important it is.

The truth is though, people’s schedules – especially these days – make it really hard to gather around the table together for meals, which is why I LOVE the idea of working to change that – for everyone. When I first heard of Billion Family Dinners, I immediately wanted to be a part of it. Billion Dinners is about recognizing that coming together over a meal is not only important, but can have lasting effects on relationships, the day-to-day, your mind and health, and yes- your life. Billion Dinners is essentially a movement, and a place where the rest of us who agree that yes, this is important, can gather together to not just hold each other accountable, but to share our special family dinner moments together – across the world – in a social way. You all know how much I love challenges and the challenge within this movement is SO easy: track the minutes spent over family dinner & share it via social media & with the DinnerCall app.

And because I want ALL of you to take part in this 2 week challenge with me, here are the official details:

  1. Follow DinnerCall on Instagram and/or Twitter
  2. Download the FREE DinnerCall app (avail for both Android & iPhone)
  3. Sit down to 10 family meals (does NOT have to just be dinner!) in the next 2 weeks, track them using the DinnerCall app, and then share them via social media by tagging me: @embergreyblog & @DinnerCall – along with the hashtag #billiondinners

(If you aren’t already, you can follow me on both Instagram & Twitter!)

The bonus to this challenge is that in a few weeks there’s going to be a raffle where one lucky winner will win a $50 gift card to their grocery store of choice, as long as that person has shared at least 10 meals within the two weeks using the app. If you would like to be included in the raffle, you must track your meals using the DinnerCall app and be sure to tag me @embergreyblog & BillionDinners so it can be tracked πŸ™‚

And listen to me, if you’re sitting here thinking, “Alright well, I’m single so I don’t fit into this movement” – I beg to differ. I’m sure most of you would agree that family is so much more than relatives – I have quite a few friends I would absolutely consider family. So invite some friends over; cook a meal together. Or, make it easy on yourself and order pizza, pick up some Chinese food, or open a bottle of wine and a box of Oreos (trust me on that one). Talk, ask questions: What are you grateful for? What’s been going on in your life? How can I pray for you? Deeper conversations with the people in our lives – face to face conversations – can and truly should be happening more. (I LOVE this shot from Lululemon of the group meal – so fun.)

I hope you’ll join me in this movement with Billion Family Dinners; I’m looking forward to seeing your shared meals & sharing my own special moments with you all this next month. Wouldn’t it be awesome to see one billion dinners tracked in just two weeks?? πŸ™‚ Let’s get this going!

Billion Family Dinners


Bon appΓ©tit & happy conversing!Β 
What areΒ youΒ grateful for?Β 

Link up below and join the rest of us in starting each day this week with a grateful heart. Not enough time to write a Grateful Heart post today? No worries!Β This linkup will be open until Friday!Β 

1. Link up to your Grateful Heart post, not just your blog’s homepage, andΒ please link your post back to Ember Grey (via link or GH button) so that others can link up too! *Any posts that do not have to do with this GH topic or those that do not link back up to this blog will be deleted.Β 

2. If you use #gratefulheart on Twitter, tag me and I will retweet! @embergreyblog

3. Carry on and be grateful! XO!
Grateful Heart w/ Ember Grey

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  • Love, love, love this!! Dinner time is my favorite with my fam. We’re usually a hot mess by this time of the day, but I love that we all gather and catch up on each other’s days. We usually have to talk loudly at this point because Jude is melting quickly, but still, we’re together, for 15-30 minutes and I love it!

    • It’s the same for us πŸ™‚ Only about 15 minutes but it’s my favorite 15 minutes of the day!

  • I really love this post. Even as a single gal, I make sure a few times a week I get out there and eat with a girlfriend or my pal after yoga… I NEED that, because eating alone all the time can be sad and lonely!

    • Exactly!! My friends were my dinner partners when I was single and now – even when Christian is out of town – I tend to just eat by myself. I’m going to be changing that πŸ™‚

  • Yeah!!! Family meals are so important. When I grew up I bet there was only 5 times in all of my 17 years at home that we weren’t all together for a meal. We still continue this today as my sister, mom, and I all live within 3 houses of eachother. Its fun to try what they have cooked up and share our days together.

    • Wow, Brittany- that’s awesome that you had that growing up! I’m looking forward to seeing your dinners!! πŸ™‚

  • Great idea on the dinner app. I have neither phones so I can’t track. Although dinners include just the three of us now and we still gather around the table every night. When everyone is here it is truly a party. Enjoy your weekend at the conferene. Sounds like a fun time.

    • It’s the BEST when there’s a big group of people πŸ™‚ Meal time with the whole family is my fave!

  • YES! Med school has made having dinner together so hard, but it’s so worth it to just make it happen, no matter what time it has to be!

    • Yes, lady! I hear you- it’s not easy at all but definitely doable. (There are some nights we have to force ourselves away from our work.)

  • What a great idea! James and I both have unusual schedules (or at least I do) and we make it a point to have dinner together. I’m certainly going to participate.

    • I love that you guys make a point to still have dinner together. It makes going back to work afterwards less painful πŸ™‚

  • Such a cool idea! It really is tough. Even for people with normal schedules after a long day at work it’s hard to want to plan/execute dinner. Props to you all for making it work!

    • Oh I didn’t say I COOK every night, haha! Do you see what’s in the picture above? Salad with way too much dressing (a mistake I always make). Last night it was Chipotle. Some nights it just works out that way!! πŸ™‚

  • Family dinners can be difficult. It’s just me and Walt, so obviously I don’t have that problem. But, when I was younger most of us grabbed our dinner and ate in our rooms or in the living room in front of the TV. It’s kind of sad.

    • Alright girl- sometime in the next two weeks, we’re going to FaceTime and have dinner together. I’m serious. Deal?!

      • THAT would be awesome!!!

        • Perfect!! πŸ™‚ I’ll be out of town (at the Influence Conf) this week/weekend so how about next week?!

          • Perfect! I am jealous you will be away at the conference. I hope you have fun. The ONLY day I’m not available next week is Tuesday.

          • Wanna do Thurs, Sept 24?!

          • Yes, that sounds good!! πŸ™‚

          • So excited! I’ll text you next week regarding a good time πŸ™‚ xo!

          • I can’t wait! Have fun at the conference, I just pre-ordered the video (and became a member!!). πŸ™‚ xo

          • Thanks, lady!

  • This is a great idea πŸ™‚ Kyle and I always eat at the dinner table when we’re both home for dinner. We also try to have lunch together whenever possible. He is self-employed so he’s always busy, but I love sitting down to dinner with him at 10pm as much as I do at 6pm πŸ™‚

    • Sometimes that’s how it goes at our house too πŸ˜‰ Dinner at 5p (like old people) and dinner at 10p. Too funny.

  • This is such a great idea! We ALWAYS try to have dinner time together, but just like you said – sometimes it is hard to find the time to set aside. Some of my greatest memories with my parents and siblings were over dinner. I can’t wait to start that tradition with Ian, and with our future kids.

    • My family was that way too πŸ™‚ There were times my brother and I hated it because we wanted to be with our friends but of course, looking back, we’re so glad it was a rule.

  • We always try to eat dinner together. Almost every Saturday and Sunday we make sure to have dinner together and 3 nights during the week. It doesn’t always happen but it’s a priority for us.

    • Even a few meals together is better than nothing, totally. Christian travels a lot so we don’t eat dinner together every single night, but we definitely make a point to when he’s home!

  • Those moments and conversations over some delish food are the absolute best! I love that ya’ll make every effort to keep that tradition going πŸ™‚

    • Sometimes the dinners are quick and other times we spend a good hour – always worth it πŸ™‚

  • I just found your blog and it is just heavenly, I love how open and honest your writing and heart is!

    • Hey Brooke! How nice of you to say, thank you! πŸ™‚ I look forward to getting to know you better via blogland!

  • I LOVE this. Since Toddles has been big enough to sit at the table, we’ve had family dinners at least 6 nights a week. And even when we’re not actually sitting at the table, we will sit in front of the TV watching a family movie! It is so important to take that time together. Love this movement.