How to Bring the Simple Joys Back to Dinnertime

Getting ready for dinner is one of my favorite times of the day. I adore turning our table into a family place to meet and connect. We have a long wooden table and I often use linens to lighten the look and create comfort for my family. There is not much in my world that beats a glass of wine in hand, fresh linens on the table and an amazing smell wafting in from the kitchen while we prepare. I remember my mother enjoying this time of day as well, with her record player playing her favorite vinyl, and fresh linens gently thrown on our family's dinning table.

For Christmas, we received a restored vintage record player. It has become a favorite piece in our house. With permission I raided my parents’ collection of vinyl records that were stored away, and now am the proud owner of a classic collection of music to choose from. I will often start a record as I prepare for dinner. There is something magical about the sound of a song on vinyl. No matter what is going on in our home, a record playing seems to calm it and turn what could be a stressful time of day into an event of joy for our entire family.

This magical quality in hearing music on vinyl is why the trend of owning record players has become so strong again. In our technologically advanced world, sometimes we laugh at the fact that we now have to walk over and flip the vinyl, or move the needle when it gets stuck. Moving backwards in some ways to achieve that perfect tune. It enlivens our hearts and reminds me of my youth.

I still remember the sound of my mom's record playing in the evenings, and the fresh smelling linens she would pull out each evening for the table. The smells and sounds are quite comforting to me as an adult. They give me a sense of deep joy and wonderful purpose at dinnertime. I love that I can use Gain detergent in my washing machine to give my linens the same amazing smell that I remember so dearly. Seeing my own kids pick out the records they like to hear and then sitting around our table laughing together and connecting is my favorite time of day. It must be why the really good things in life like great smelling linens, slowing down to connect, and music on vinyl never seem to truly go out of style.