The proper attitude for parents at the dinner table (and a lot of other places) is “engrasa y aprieta,” a Spanish expression meaning literally to grease and to tighten.
A balance of both greasing and tightening is generally needed to successfully bring order out of chaos in your family meals.
If you are joyless and grim about what, where, when and how much your kids eat, you need to lighten up. Make it fun, make it delicious. If on the other hand, you are haphazard and careless about how, when and what they eat, you need to tighten up.
Bringing in some structure requires discipline on the part of parents and children, but maybe not in the ways you might think.
Knowing when to grease and when to tighten is easier if you know what your job is a parent and what is the children’s, with the labor clearly divided.
The parent’s job description:
- Be in…