Have I mentioned that Nate works nights on occasion? Our schedule is really wonky during these periods. He leaves at 5pm or so and doesn't get home until after 7am. The in-between for me is spent squeezing in conference calls and shuffling the boys back-and-forth from preschool.
This weird schedule has been a blessing in many ways, though. It gives Nate and I the opportunity to “bulk work,” as I call it, and have truly devoted chunks of family time on our weekends. We don't get a ton of one-on-one time, but twice weekly a glorious window of opportunity emerges. 4pm rolls around and the baby is taking his afternoon nap. The house is quiet with the big boys away, and we get to sit down for dinner. Just the two of us.
Our breakfast nook is still going strong. It's one of the few spots in our house that is generally calm and clean. The main dining room table is the landing spot for work props and mail, so it makes sense that we would settle in here for a meal and some conversation. I occasionally set out some bouquets and light a candle or two – not for Nate so much as for myself. It makes me smile when I walk by, knowing that we've likely found our forever home here.
I have a whole second mealtime when the big boys get home, so we keep this first dinner quick and tailored to Nate's tastes. He LOVES lobster ravioli. I can't be bothered to make shellfish from scratch, so our sponsor Bertolli steps in with an easy frozen meal solution.
We take a few moments to catch up on general family business.
It's not formal or fancy, but the company is good.
Food is served family-style, as it should be, and we eventually find ourselves laughing over things that only we'd understand.
Just as we should be.
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Share a photo on Twitter or Instagram showing how you dine like an Italian with hashtag #MangiaMoment and #Sweepstakes. Five entries that embody the most Mangia spirit will be awarded with a trip to attend Bertolli's Mangia-themed event in Wine Country, CA to celebrate Bertolli's 150th anniversary in Spring 2016. Five of our own followers will be randomly selected to win a $150 kit with everything you need to “Mangia!” including a skillet, cheese grater, wine towel and more. Additionally, some entry content will be chosen to be featured on the Mangia Moment site, and could be selected to be used in Bertolli's upcoming advertising campaigns. For complete rules and regulations, please visit http://www.bertollimangiamoment.com/contest.