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Stephanie chats with Brianne DeRosa from The Family Dinner Project about practical strategies for overcoming common barriers to family meals. They help you work through challenges with picky eaters, having a limited time and budget, different schedules, and wiggly toddlers.  They also discuss considerations for military families and single parents, along with real life tips to navigate technology and screens at meals. You’ll walk away from this episode feeling heard and with simple tools to put into action right away.

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Topics Discussed:

  • What the research says about the importance of family meals
  • What defines a family meal. (Hint: it’s not what you think!
  • Practical ways to overcome the most common barriers to family meals
  • How to make mealtime feel less intimidating
  • Fun dinnertime activities you can do with your kids, at all ages
  • Ways to thoughtfully use technology at the dinner table and ways to reduce screentime

This episode's guest

Brianne DeRosa, MFA, is the Content Manager for The Family Dinner Project and co-author of Eat, Laugh, Talk: The Family Dinner Playbook. As a freelance writer and consultant to nonprofit organizations, she has spent over a decade working in communications, program development and creative initiatives. Bri runs her own food blog, Red, Round or Green and has contributed to the Cooking with Trader Joe’s: Easy Lunchboxes cookbook as well as the Cooking Light Dinnertime Survival Guide. She has also written for numerous outlets including Motherwell Magazine, Yahoo! Parenting, HandPicked Nation, KidsNation Magazine, Real Mom Nutrition and The Lunch Tray. Bri has the opportunity to practice her family dinner skills every day with her husband and two young sons. 

About The Family Dinner Project:

The Family Dinner Project, a nonprofit initiative started in 2010, champions family dinner as an opportunity for family members to connect with each other through food, fun and conversation about things that matter.  More than 20 years of scientific research shows “why” family mealtimes are so important. The Family Dinner Project provides the “how” for today’s busy families.

Our team members have come from varied personal and professional backgrounds. We are parents and non-parents, and our ages range from “young professional” to “Medicare-eligible.”  Our collective professional experience includes education, family therapy, research, food, social work, marketing and communication. With nonprofit partners and local champions, The Family Dinner Project team works online and at community events to help families increase the frequency, meaning and long-term benefits of their shared meals.  We are based in Boston at Massachusetts General Hospital’s Psychiatry Academy.