Monday, March 28, 2011

How Do You Serve Your Family Meals?

 I'm curious about how other moms do this...especially if you have many children.

When ONE mom is serving the meal to MANY people :-)- who do YOU serve first?
And what order do you go in from there?

At my house, most of the time, unless we are doing a banquet style meal like at Christmas where things are spread out and they can get their own, or other times such as with breakfast foods when they are passed in big bowls like on the Waltons.... I typically do all the actual 'serving' of the plate :-)

I usually give my husband's plate to him first- its piping hot and the kids can't eat it that hot- but he sure can!

Next I serve from youngest to oldest.

This started once some of them were old enough to help set the table. The oldest ones would begin to pour drinks and get forks while I started fixing plates for the (fussing) baby who was certainly acting like he was the hungriest of the kids and who most definitely had the least patience. And even if the baby wasn't acting so hungry, it just made sense to fix plates from youngest to oldest, so the youngest ones' plates would be cooler before everyone sat down, as younger children are more prone to not test the heat of their food :-)

When I had a bigger kitchen, I could lay out 4 or 5 plates easily, lift the pot, and deal the foods out like I would cards! But with the smaller kitchen, and more plates (!), I've never had room to spread out that many plates on the counter. 

But I'm curious- how does every other mother fix 3, 4, 5, 6 plates or more at a time?

How do you work your assembly line at meal time?


Arlee Girl said...

I never thought about it. It seems organized to me but I have noticed a deer in the headlights look on guests faces. lol
We set the table, light candles and put serving dishes of food on the table every night. I usually serve dh first then little ones and we pass around to older ones. Little kids LOVE to pass food at the table and it takes a nerves of steel mom to allow it. Nobody takes a bite til we say grace and nobody leaves until excused. I have been told it is an old fashioned way to do it but my dh is gone many nights a week and the routine is really helpful.
I also want to say thank you! I decided to start fixing a more traditonal lunch (tomorrow is sloppy joes) and boy is it easier and cheaper than the every man for himself lunches I had been doing.

Donna said...

Arlee Girl-
Why you're welcome! :-) How neat!
Yes, it is cheaper isn't it!

I remember looking at how fun and cute Lunchables looked one time- then I figured how much it would cost me in one week to feed six kids those things- and they weren't so cute anymore.

Thank U 4 answering my question.
Love the candle lighting! Nice touch!

I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one who serves their family in this order. It is old-fashioned- but I like that
:-) And it just seems to work best for my family and now that the little ones aren't so little anymore- they are beginning to help clear the table too! Yay!

Mommafrog said...

We are a family of 7 (5 children ages: girl 14, boy 11, girl 10, girl 10, girl 8). Alot of times I make plates for everyone then the kids just choose a plate and sit. Sometimes they fix there own plate. Hubby and I always fix ours last. I will fix his plate if I am fixing the other plates too. Seconds are always fixed by the person wanting them.
I do it this way so I can enjoy my meal and hubby waits for me anyway so this works out to be the easiest for us.
Love your blog btw!

Donna said...

Thank U Mommafrog!
Your way sounds great too and how nice that your hubby waits on U!!!

I see U must have twins--how precious!! Some of mine are the same ages as yours. ('cept I have 1 girl and 5 boys, almost the opposite, lol)

Thank U 4 sharing how your family handles meal times!!!

Joy said...

Here at my house at every meal, I put all the plates on the counter, fix them all myself have the littles carry to the table and place in the correct spot. So we all are served at the same time, I dally out portions because we don't want to waste and I know how much each person truly eats. I then have one of the littles pour drinks put out forks and napkins. I load the plates straight from the stove staright from the pans and pots easy clean up. So we all sit down at the same time and are served basically at once! This have been fun sharing!

Outnumbered said...

We are a family of 6. I always put the food on the table in serving dishes, set the table with empty plates, and have everyone dish for themselves. I dish for the 2 youngest before the prayer so that it can cool a bit, everyone else dishes after the prayer. I usually fill drink glasses while they dish up.

Donna said...

Oh how fun!
Bet your littles love helping!!
And everyone sits at once- yeah!
Great way 2 do it! Thank U 4 sharing!

Donna said...

I love your way of serving!
If I had more room on our table, I'd probably do it your way every time!!
My kids love it that way, since they can pretend we're the Waltons!
Thank U so much for sharing your way too!!

Frugal in Florida said...

Eh, mom to 2 and wife to 1, and host to many ... its pretty much serve yourself. I cook, place the food out on the countertops and every one grabs a plate, serves themself and sits at the table. I suppose its because its mostly teens who DON'T live in the house that it's just easier to do the dish up and then sit. Whenever I do set the table, its dumb because everyone brings their plate to the counter out of habit :)

Donna said...


I like your way- maybe when all mine are teens this will work for us! ...But golly gee- if each one of them bring ONE teen in- can you imagine all the food?!?!? ;-)

Thank U so much 4 sharing!

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