I hope to inspire with this blog and sometimes we have a room in our homes that needs a little inspiration and attention. Some of us aren't fortunate enough to have one of these rooms, others have contorted it into an office, playroom, studio or extra family room. Some of them are "a part" of another room (like mine), a run-on by lazy architects on a budget or builders who try to convince us that an open concept is best for all of us. Sorry architects and builders but I am talking about the formal Dining Room. A room unto it's self, separated from the kitchen, living and family rooms. Our insane and overly scheduled lives have left the dining room to a mere pass through or left waiting for the Big Three (Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter) to open it's arms to us again, welcoming us back like the Grandmother you don't visit enough but she's always happy to see you without a lecture.
I spent many years working (and drinking )in restaurants and bars. The sense of community and comfort are the core of the concept...being with other human beings, communicating and sharing food, drink and ideas is a basic need in our lives. So why would you allow that same need to go unfilled in your own home? Home is the last safe place on earth, it needs to be as comfortable and inviting as possible. Sharing ideas, communicating with the ones you love and providing that safe haven for your family is essential to a happy life. I can refer you to all kinds of studies that tell us that eating dinner together as a family brings us all closer, helps our kids get better grades, raises their self esteem and in general makes you a tighter clan. But we all know these benefits of dining together and eating in front of the TV as a family does not count!
Let's get some inspiration from a teeny handful of cafes, pubs and restaurants from around the world...
I usually have to comment on all my pictures that I post but I will let them speak for themselves this time.
I know you can't see the interior here but I had to include at least one outdoor cafe shot and I can't help myself when it comes to Cafe du Monde. It is one of my favorite spots in New Orleans. Yes, I know it's tourist Hell but just look at this picture, it makes me smile. Gorging yourself on a pastry with an astonishingly high calorie count, drinking cup after cup of coffee till you're shaking, chain smoking till you've filled the ashtray and watching the freak show of tourists, junkies, musicians and locals shuffle by was one of my favorite and most memorable experiences (besides the bars and graveyards - which we will cover another time) in New Orleans.
Go on now...go clean out your dining room or carve out a space in your home for one and bond with your family or better yet, host a dinner party!