family breakfast!

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familybreakfast1

when cheerios reached out to us about their family breakfast project, it only took one quick glance over this page before i had to know more, and felt pumped and motivated to improve our own family’s breakfast routine and traditions.  ever since the littles came along, we’ve actually tried really hard to have a good breakfast around the table together each day, and make it a meaningful time for our family to really connect before the busy day begins. that doesn’t mean we sit down together every morning (try is the key word here!), and there are days where we are rushed and grabbing breakfast on the go while we’re running out the door, because getting anywhere on time is not my strong suit as a mother but something i have on my list of things to work on in the next life. anyway, we still try our best to sit down at the table together when we can.

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from my dancing days, i learned early on what a major part my breakfast would play into my day of classes and rehearsals and shows, so i’ve always taken it a bit more seriously than my other meals. and since my kiddos have come along, i’ve realized just how much it sets them up for a successful day as well, not just what they eat, but having that time to sit together and connect before the crazy of the day begins.  we actually have a rule of “no phones at the table!” which eleanor always enforces. she has even brought her tiny doctor play phone to the table a few times since the rule was initiated so she can announce that there is a phone! and oh no! we must take it away!

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we’ve consciously used this time in the morning to show our kids how we can talk to each other and interact and ask questions. we taught eleanor the word for this, “chit chat!” which she likes to use on occasion now. we started off repeating just a few key questions like “what’s the weather like today?” “how’d you sleep?” “what’d you dream about?” and we all take turns answering. after a few days of this, eleanor started asking these questions all on her own. she loves it.  when we’re not around, we will sometimes hear her ask samson questions, and then try to engage him to carry on the conversation with her.  it’s kind of endearing as a parent to know that our kids are learning how to interact with one another and building their relationship. we hope that by doing these little things we’re planting seeds for the future.

probably my favorite breakfast time conversations revolve around our dream recaps from the night before (because my kids either have incredibly vivid and wild dreams each night, or incredibly vivid and wild imaginations and pretend-story-making-up-skills). josh and i kind of live for these recaps, always so entertaining and impossible!

one of the biggest things i like about the family breakfast project is their 7 day program. it shares a lot of great suggestions and ideas for how to get the most out of your family time around the table in the morning.  ideas like creating a family music playlist together, sharing simple acts of kindness to do through the day and report back on at dinner, sharing your wishes and worries for the day and brainstorming together how to make them better, and a few fun simple breakfast treats and recipes and games, too. these are great little tools for bringing families together and becoming closer. what’s more important than that?

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this post is in partnership with cheerios and the family breakfast project.   i would love to hear any special traditions or rituals your own family has successfully implemented around breakfast time in the comments, too! you can use the hashtag #familybreakfast, if you share your ideas or traditions on your social channels.

  1. Georgiana

    Naomi, I really love the way you and Josh are raising your littles, wish more families would take your example! But I feel like I must say, Cheerios is not a good way to start the day or feed children or anyone for that matter. There are so many natural and healthy alternatives out there!
    Lots of love!

  2. isa

    i would love to see your whole flat, the blue wall looks fantastic :-)

  3. Livi

    Family breakfast is such a special time!

  4. marie

    We also try to have breakfast but it’s difficult when we’re either rushing off to sch or work. But we bond together over dinner, esp during the weekends! My hubby would ask my son abt his friends and sch, and his replies are always so funny. I hope that the 3 of us will continue to have a proper conversation or even meal when babyboy comes along! ;)

    http://smittenbyangels.blogspot.com

  5. Tracy T

    I love the idea of this! I have many fond memories sitting around the breakfast table with my parents and brothers. At the moment breakfast is in front of the TV while I have a coffee and wake up. I think we need to shake things up and give this a try :-)

  6. Queenie

    This is such a good idea to have a chat around the table in the morning as a family! Breakfast is definitely the most important meal of the day :) Adorable photos as always xxx

    http://peanutbutterandmussels.com/

  7. thea

    Now that my little one is 6 months, he’s trying soft finger-foody fruits and veggies in his high chair with us at the table! Breakfast is my favorite because he is ALL SMILES in the morning! Having this time with my husband and son (and dogs who figured out that baby means dropped food under the table) is such a joy! This is such a wonderful time in our lives, and like you I’m trying to take every opportunity to soak it in! Family meals, especially breakfast, are the best! :)

  8. Lorna

    You guys are such a beautiful family. I’m new to reading your blog but have fallen in love with the style that you write in and how you make the ordinary day to day things seem so magical and exciting!

    Forever Dreaming of Oz

  9. Sarah

    I don’t really have any breakfast rituals as such, but I always make sure I eat something as otherwise I feel lethargic until lunch time. I’m in agreement with you that it’s definitely important to eat breakfast.

    Sarah xo | PolkaDotLemon

  10. Whitney

    I love this! Breakfast is my favorite meal as well and being in school, I learned the same thing. Breakfast is so important.

  11. nanette

    i love breakfast time! my daughter and husband love it too. we simply just sit on the table and talk about the day before or whatever. my daughter will usually say, “yummy!”, all throughout breakfast which makes us laugh. :)

  12. Nikki

    I don’t often like sponsored posts, but I love the way you put this together. I love starting the day as a family around the table. It really does make for a better day. Love your little rainbow planters too.

  13. Gabriella

    My husband and I usually have muesli with yoghurt and fresh fruit (mostly banana and whatever else we have on hand). On saturdays we usually try out a new (to us) recipe, anything from pancakes to scrambled eggs (and anything BUT muesli!), because saturday mornings are our thing and the only morning where we really have time for eachother… and on sundays anything we can get our hands on before heading off to church way too early in the morning ;)

    I know another commenter mentioned that cheerios aren’t the healthiest option out there, which I agree with, but I also think this post and the aim of #familybreakfast is to establish a healthy ritual that encourages families to spend more time with eachother, not eat cheerios every single day. ;)

    Ps: Loving the blue wall!

  14. Morgan

    My morning breakfast routine revolves around my pets b/c my husband and I are on two completely different morning schedules, but every morning when I get home from the gym I feed both animals and then fix my own breakfast. Then once I’m ready to eat I take them outside with my and we eat on the patio and take in the quiet of the morning (of course weather permitting).

  15. Melanie

    I love Samson’s hair on the last picture HAHA, so cute !

    Melanie xx outofstandards.blogspot.fr

  16. I love this post! While I only have a tiny family right now (husband and puppy), we try really hard to have coffee together every morning, sometimes breakfast too, made by whoever isn’t taking the puppy out for her morning walk. Then we sit and eat together and talk about what we hope to accomplish that day so we can check in later that day through email to keep each other accountable, or we take the time to play with our dog together before separating for the day.

    We end up getting a slightly later start, but it’s so worth it!

  17. BabaWaga

    My little toddler loves his cheerios, it’s one of his fave breakfast options! He actually has taken to calling them ‘hoops’ as this is what the nursery staff call this cereal brand – he goes 3 times a week and is fed his breakfast meal whilst there. I know they are not as healthy as shredded wheat or plain bran flakes or muesli but far healthier than something like Coco Pops or Frosties (do you have those in the US?)

    Everything in moderation, am I right?

  18. Katie

    Even before cell phones (and now with cell phones) my family had a “no phone” rule during meal time. If the land line rang, we let it go to voicemail. And I’m so grateful to my parents for that! Not just at breakfast, but at many meals, I fondly remember when I was younger my mom, dad, sisters, and I all sitting around the table, passing around a small container full of index cards with pictures we had all drawn on them (mostly crazy faces), and we had to blindly pick a card. This picture had to act as inspiration for a story about our day! Whether it was a silly picture, a crazy picture, or a sad picture, we’d share moments about a time in which we had a happy, crazy, dissappointing, or even busy experience. Growing up in a creative household is something I’m thankful for everyday! So happy you guys are starting traditions like these! x

  19. i love this!

    i wouldn’t say we had any special breakfast traditions growing up. my dad worked a whole lot so we mostly saw him around dinner time and the hours leading to bed time.. but breakfasts mostly were times with our momma. i can remember sitting on the counter by our toaster oven while she made eggs, bacon, toast, pancakes..etc. the same worked for when she baked her famous carrot cake ;)

    the older we got (especially when my dad finally got to retire) it was a lot of sitting outside to drink coffee and then going in and sitting at their big kitchen table to talk while my dad made french toast or eggs and sausage – whatever everyone wanted. i cherish those memories and i miss being home with my parents.

    really happy to see you each make time for one another in the mornings. it always sets my day just right when i make breakfast time an extra fellowship time.

  20. Vanessa

    What an adorable post! Thanks for sharing! :)

  21. lolly

    Oh, that blue wall…reminds me of that beautiful door you saw in Paris…was that the inspiration for it?
    Such a sweet post.

  22. Katie

    We try to have family dance parties at breakfast as often as possible. Our 15-month-old loves to dance and listen to music, plus, it starts the day off on a positive, fun note and releases endorphins. It’s hard to be in a grumpy/tired mood after a dance party :)

  23. absolutely adorable!!

    can’t wait for mornings like that one day when i have kids!

  24. Janis

    Breakfast is a struggle everyday! It is pretty hard for us to get up early enough to eat breakfast at home. But, will have to definitely try harder :)

  25. Adrianna

    My family lives in CT on Long Island sound. When we were little we used to eat breakfast and then go for a walk by the water before school. We did it every morning and our teachers always thought it was cool.

    Now I’m nearly 21 and my breakfast tradition with my boyfriend is to go to the same diner on the weekends. We always order the same thing and all the staff knows and loves us. We’ve been going since before we were a couple and it’s funny to see how our breakfast conversations went from “what do you want to do with your life” to making our grocery list while we eat our French toast.

  26. hanna

    Your family is too adorable! -Hanna Lei

  27. Jen

    love this! breakfast is a nice time for us too and our little ones love pouring their own cereal and milk (from little containers!)
    I love starting our day off together!

  28. Annette

    I understand your need to include sponsored posts but processed breakfast cereals are full of sugar and are actually not very nutritious at all. Perhaps you don’t really promote cereal within your family but be careful what you promote to the wider public. You have a lot of fans. Love the blog though

  29. Samantha

    I wish Cheerios held me longer. I’m a protein kinda gal in the morning!

  30. You two are such awesome and fun parents! Cannot wait until my little man is here, so we can have some cute family traditions.

    http://www.floatonblog.com/

  31. Debs

    I have to agree with a few of the previous comments. Cheerios aren’t something I would give to my son on a regular basis, as I really care about what he eats and know that there are far healthier options out there. I understand ‘everything in moderation’, but surely you must understand the power you hold with this many followers. You are portraying this image of happy family gatherings and traditions, but the real (obvious and old trick) marketing behind it is ‘buy cheerios and be like me’. Please be careful – many readers will buy into this and I don’t think it is fair. It enjoy reading your blog, but this post has certainly made me think twice about reading it again.

  32. breakfast is the meal i neglect most often, but it’s my favourite kind of food to eat! this inspired me to try harder to make sure i eat breakfast every day. so important! for so many reasons!
    xx

  33. Jennifer

    My family plays a game called “high-low” where each person (youngest to oldest in our house) shares the “high” part of their day and the “low” part. It’s a fun way to hear about accomplishments, achievements, funny little anecdotes, and also encourage each person to share something that made them sad or angry and let it go! Your family is so sweet. Love to all of you!

  34. Brittni

    It’s so great that you’re trying to make family time daily! It’s that sacred time that’s so important for kids when it comes to developing family narratives and a solid sense of self. Though my family ultimately did away with our dinnertime traditions as I got older, we had a similar format when I was a kid. Whether we talked about our days or my mom’s memories of her own childhood, those meals were so important to me.

  35. Jessica

    Hey Naomi,

    Love this post because it’s about SPENDING TIME WITH FAMILY & incorporating happy traditions with family over eating breakfast! :) It’s a good message that you’re promoting in my opinion :).

    My breakfast routine is probably awful but one I look forward to.. when I have the day off work, I LOVE waking up in the morning and making a healthy breakfast.. usually greek yogurt and fruit and then I watch it in front of morning television (either the food network or live with kelly and michael) and enjoy some coffee! It’s a good routine for me. :)

    P.S. Cheerios aren’t even that bad.. it’s better than like, Lucky Charms lol. Not sure what everyone is getting so upset about? Plus, it’s your family & you choose what to feed them.. sigh.

  36. Sandy

    My children loved their Cheerios! I seemed to always have a baggie of them on hand when we were out and about. They made a great snack!

  37. mery

    Everyone raise their children in the best way possible, that’s for sure but I must say this (no offense intended) Cheerios is not the best nor the healthiest breakfast for childrens. I know this is a sponsored post and maybe it’s just that and in your daily basis you choose a more healthy meal for your littles. I don’t know, I feel a little disappointed with this, you usually choose your partners well but I think this is a mistake. Again, no offense intended.

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  39. Kelsi

    I love this. I always had ballet at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday mornings, but I knew that when I got home around 10:00, Neil Diamond would be playing, my dad would be making waffles or aebleskivers, my mom washing strawberries, and my siblings singing so loud to the music, excited for our weekly Saturday brunch. Then we’d rush off to soccer games and whatever else the day had. Even now when I hear Neil Diamond, I crave my dad’s breakfasts. Definitely my favorite family meal.

  40. Alexandra

    We try to eat breakfast together. We are a family of 5 and we have 3 girls under age of 4, so we really try. We say our morning prayer and while the girls eat breakfast, daddy reads a book, anf fix coffee. :D

  41. Naomi

    I always mean to ask (and always forget) but where did you find your kitchen table? i was so inspired by it that for months i searched that farmhouse style table and after months of coming up empty handed, decided to build my own. since my guy and i are so busy, it’s been a slow month process but we are almost finished. between yours and Elsie Larson’s ( http://www.abeautifulmess.com/2012/12/elsies-.html ) we are just about finished with ours. i LOVE your table!

    just wanted to let you know :)

  42. Allie

    I have seen this project across a couple other blogs and really love the idea behind it. Bravo, Cheerios!

  43. No phones at the table is the best idea since smartphones were invented :)

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  45. I think breakfast is so important too. Being married to a South Indian, we often eat idlys or dosa for breakfast. Idlys are especially fantastic for kids.