The lost ritual of family dinner and how to rediscover it

family dinner

As we hurtle through 2019 it’s easy to forget where we came from, and how far we have come. From nomads living in the savage darkness of prehistory to present day, where our cities grow millions strong. The way we live and communicate has evolved quickly and dramatically. The idea of family is now malleable, your friends are your family and you are free to make a new family with whomever you want and however you want.

Rapid social change has been welcomed by most and despised by some, but there is something that hasn’t changed since the dawn of man. Our love of food. More specifically, or love of sharing food with others.

The shared meal is a cornerstone of our species. It brings us together, however fleetingly, and as we share food; we share ourselves. Some meals become ritual, like the family dinner, where every night the family has a chance to be together as one and learn about each other’s lives.

Sadly though, as the frenetic pace of modern life continues, some of our rituals disappear. The sit-down family dinner seems almost like an antique but is as important now as it ever was to communicate with your family, whoever or whatever that means to you.

Bring it to the surface

A clean and sturdy surface for eating is paramount to reclaiming the ritual of family dinner. You don’t need much, just a family (the hardest part!) and a space to eat. Your surface will need adequate size and strength…but where to find such a coveted item? Shockingly, a dining room table ticks all these boxes.

Obviously, the size of your family dictates the size of dining table needed. If your family consists of you, your mysterious house mate and his pet mouse, a small dining table would be perfect. Larger families may even consider going the entire dining room set.

How’s it made?

To be sure the ritual becomes a ritual you will need to repeat it. By establishing a set time for meals, you reinforce the idea that a significant group event is taking place. The food shared is almost irrelevant, if the family is brought together and communicating the ritual is complete. Making all members of the family feel comfortable and relaxed is important, again, the choice of dining table can have a huge impact on comfort levels.

When choosing a dining table, take into consideration the seating arrangement and materials used for construction. Rectangle shaped dining tables such as this dining table from Domayne provide a classic shape with enough room to house a large family. Round tables are another less popular option, they provide no more seating than a rectangular table whilst taking up more floorspace. A round table can make the family feel equal (no big boss taking up the head of the table) and can be a perfect way to serve food in a fun way (lazy Susanne anyone?)


Once the dining table has been found and placed in an ideal location (watch for corridors of movement, and as a rule leave about half a meter of space between chairs and walls.) The second step is to prepare the food. As stated previously, the food you share is almost irrelevant, but GOOD food will keep things fresh and ensure everyone wants to be there. Foods that are fun to share are a good way to add some spice to family dinner.

As we soar into the future, we must be grateful for the things we have and the people we love. In 2019 family means different things to different folk, but we must cherish our families and make a conscious effort to come together. Hopefully, the lost ritual of family dinner will be making a comeback.

Image by Karolina Grabowska from Pixabay

Tips And Tricks For Making The Most Of A Professional Photography Session

family photoshoot

How to make sure your family photoshoot is a success…

Taking the time to attend a photoshoot with all the family is something that is hugely important for capturing important milestones and special memories in a professional way.

However, it is generally not a cheap activity. Therefore, when taking your family along for some professional photography, you will naturally want it to go as smoothly as possible.

Although to some extent the success of your professional photography session is out of your hands, there are certain tips and tricks that can help to avoid there being any confusion and/or tantrums on the day!

Be well rested

Going for some professional photography is generally a positive thing to do and is something that the whole family will no doubt enjoy doing. Despite this, photoshoot sessions can last for a while and be demanding emotionally, especially for little ones.

It’s, therefore, a good idea to make sure all the family has an early night and is well rested before the session. The more that can be done to minimise the risk of there being any squabbles and tears, the better!

Generally though, the professional photography experience is such a new and exciting one, that your children probably won’t even think about how tired they are.

As well as having plenty of sleep the night before your professional photography, make sure that everyone is fed before heading to the studio. Family photoshoots tend to be fast-paced and dynamic, so you don’t want any hungry kiddies complaining halfway through!


Hopefully, your photographer will get in touch beforehand with some general advice about what to expect and what to wear. If not though, your best bet is to dress yourself and your family in neutral colours. There is no need for everyone to match as that can make the images appear unnatural and staged, but it’s a good idea to ensure that no one is wearing particularly bright or clashing colours.

The type of clothing you wear will depend on the photographers’ style and vibe. Nousha are a London-based family and child photography company who capture all their photos in black and white. Their unique approach to professional family photoshoots and the way that they simply encourage families to be themselves and show their character means that every image is truly special and treasurable.

Parents keep your noses out

Whilst it might be tempting as a parent to stand behind the camera and egg your children on to smile and look happy… it most likely won’t help.

Professional photographers will have plenty of experience in making children smile and/or laugh to capture natural happy moments, rather than forced cheesy grins.

Children are much more likely to listen to what a stranger (the photographer) has to say than their parents, who tell them what to do on a daily basis.

Don’t hold back

This one may go without saying, but be prepared to let any inhibitions go and be yourself during a professional photography session. If you don’t, it will show in the images and you won’t be getting what you’ve paid for!

Photographers will expect you to be ready to let loose, have fun and take their suggestions on board to enable some wonderful and unique images to be captured.

On the other hand, don’t be afraid to tell your photographer what your family is comfortable with and/or what activities your children enjoy doing. This way, the professionals can tailor your photoshoot accordingly to make sure that it is a positive and enjoyable experience for all.

Looking After Your Health: A Guide

Caring for your health shouldn’t be seen as a difficult endeavor. Although you will have to re-evaluate your current habits, adopting healthier alternatives should always be seen as the best choice for boosting your quality of life.

There are a number of habits that, once adopted, all stand to improve your mental and physical wellbeing. These include sleeping more, meditating, eating nutritious meals, exercising every day, having fun and visiting the doctor for check-ups and treatments.

Looking After Your Health

The older you become, the harder it is to change your routines and stop the bad habits that you have been pursuing up until this point.

Thus, the following methods are guaranteed to get your health on track and let you live your best possible life.

Sleeping more

How many hours of sleep do you currently get a night? The average adult requires 7-9 in order to properly function and to not feel irritable or tired the following day. You can easily adopt this habit by turning off electronics before you go to bed and making a point of sleeping and waking up at the same time every night, regardless of what day of the week it is.


There are countless benefits of meditation, especially when it comes to your mental health. It is a technique used by people in order to de-stress and relax, and thus focus on nothing outside of the present moment.

That being said, practice makes perfect with this activity.

Eating nutritious meals

Eating balanced meals is key to your overall health. The next time you go grocery shopping, avoid the aisles that are filled with overly processed food and other types of junk food. Instead, make a habit of incorporating vitamin-rich food into your diet that will provide you with the energy you need to perform your daily tasks.

Exercising everyday

Exercise releases endorphins (the feel-good chemical) in the brain, and it also improves your physical wellbeing. Whether you choose to exercise in your living room, go for evening runs, engage in an organized sport, visit the gym or engage in another activity, you are not without your options for what you can do.

In order to achieve optimal results, you should make a habit of working out every single day, even if it’s only for a few minutes.

Have fun in your free time

In order to improve your mental health, don’t forget about the importance of simply having fun. This could be engaging in a hobby or activity that you enjoy, spending quality time with loved ones, or anything else that you enjoy for that matter.

It is a guaranteed method for getting rid of the stress that is clouding your mind.

Visiting the doctor and treatments

Visiting the doctor is necessary regardless of your age. Of course, it would be worthwhile to get checkups more regularly the older you become, but that doesn’t mean that you should neglect them at any point in time. After all, how else will you get the treatment that you need?

The chances are that you don’t know what the best steps to follow are in order to get your health back on track. For instance, do you know what to do if you are facing a hormonal imbalance? You may not even know that you have a problem with the human growth hormone until you one day decide to take a test. This can affect the health of your entire body, and you need dedicated professionals who can assist you in an HGH therapy clinic in order to get better.

You will need medical assistance no matter what health problem you are facing.

You don’t need to take this article’s word for it, but rather, you can follow these steps yourself and notice the difference they will make to both your health and happiness. The chances are that you will not get rid of any bad habits overnight, but with time, determination, and by adopting the healthier alternatives, you will get there in no time.

Image source: pixabay

Ways of Dealing with Chronic Pain

Pain is something most people experience in different degrees at some point in life. However, when it becomes persistent, it can start to take a toll mentally as well as physically. It can be frustrating when you have to deal with pain, and you don’t understand where it comes from or what’s triggering it. The perpetuating pain can also keep you from living the life you want if it becomes overwhelming. For this reason, getting to the root cause of the pain is imperative if you’re going to find some sort of relief. This article will explore a few practical ways of dealing with chronic pain.

dealing with chronic pain

Pain Killers

One of the most common ways of dealing with chronic pain is to take painkillers. It is a temporary relief to the problem, and for many, a way to help them try and function normally on a daily basis. To take opioids safely, work closely with your doctor and only take the amount that you’re prescribed. It’s also advisable that you try not to take them with drugs, alcohol, or sleep aids simultaneously. There are several other alternatives to managing chronic pain as will be mentioned below.

Look for Natural Remedies

Everyone’s approach to dealing with chronic pain is different. While some would prefer to stick with prescription drugs, others prefer more natural remedies.

  1. Exercise: A good aerobic workout can improve most pain conditions. When you work out, your body is said to produce its own painkillers, so consider doing this as often as you can.
  2. Heat therapy: At times, heat is an excellent remedy for chronic pain, so try using hot Epsom salt baths as it could help change the nervous input from the body to the brain.
  3. Meditation: Although you feel pain physically, meditation may be able to help quell the sensation. Being able to divert your focus on anything but the pain could help minimize it.
  4. Eat remedial foods: Different types of food can often help different pain challenges. While celery is said to be great for backaches, chilies are recommended for joint pain.

See a Professional

When experiencing chronic pain, it’s vital that you don’t ignore it, but instead seek professional advice. They should be able to give you an examination and, based on their expertise, tell you the source of the pain. However, if the pain persists and you aren’t satisfied with their diagnosis, go back for a second opinion. If you later find that the cause of your chronic pain is a rare condition like cauda equina and it was ignored, consider getting more information about cauda equina claims.

Physical Therapy

Another option for dealing with chronic pain would be physical therapy. Pain experts often recommend a short course as it could help relieve pain and make daily tasks a lot easier. Physiotherapists can also advise you on the right kind of exercise to do when working out on your own to help relieve the pain. It may take a few sessions before you feel the benefits, but hopefully, you do eventually.

Chronic pain isn’t easy to manage, but the critical thing to do is not allow it to take over your life. Finding coping mechanisms that work for you should help you on your journey to living and feeling better.


Image source: pixabay


What Is CBD Oil? Uses And Benefits You Might Not Know About…

what is CBD oil? 

It almost seems like every day there is a new ‘revolutionary’ health product that will supposedly change our lives forever.

The sheer amount of new health products being discovered is bound to make us sceptical about which to try and trust.

Cannabidiol (CBD) oil is one of those products which has received perhaps more controversy than the rest.

People see the word ‘cannabis’ and automatically think to steer clear.

But actually, CBD oil could be the answer to your prayers. It offers a completely natural yet highly effective remedy to a wide range of physical and mental disorders.

 But what is CBD oil? 

First things first, yes, it is legal and completely safe. CBD oil comes from hemp, which, although it is part of the same plant as marijuana, does not have any psychoactive effects. There’s no worry of feeling ‘high’ whatsoever.

CBD oil contains cannabinoids, which when they enter the body, prompt your body to make more use of the natural cannabinoids it has. Every human body naturally produces cannabinoids, which combine with a number of different receptors to produce different effects. CBD oil essentially just gets the cycle going. Cannabinoids combine a certain type of receptor which produces anti-inflammatory and thus pain relief effects.

Now we have answered ‘what is CBD oil’ and explained how it works in the body, it is clear why adding the oil into your lifestyle is a great idea. It should be used regularly to feel the full effects.

Hopefully, now you understand ‘what is CBD oil’, you probably want to know how it can be used? 

In terms of incorporating CBD oil into your daily lifestyle, there really are no limitations. You can cook with it, use it directly on your skin, drop it straight under your tongue or even smoke it as an e-liquid.

Whatever means you think would suit you best, Natural Hemp Co. can provide the right product. They specialise in offering extremely high-quality, organic, additive-free and vegan CBD oil in a range of forms. When trying CBD oil to see if it works for you, you should make sure you purchase it from a quality and respectable source like Natural Hemp Co. to avoid any risks and put your mind at ease. Natural Hemp Co. even offer a full CBD guide on their website, so you can read about all aspects of the oil before making a purchase – they don’t hold any information back.

What can CBD oil be used for? 

Whether you are someone struggling with physical chronic pain, or your mental health is more of an issue, CBD oil is likely to help in some way.

Due to its natural anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, it can relieve pain, reduce feelings of anxiety and it has even been said that it can help with curing cancer. Big statement, we know, but there is research behind it!

Perhaps you have developed an unhealthy addiction like smoking and you have no hope that you will be able to quit on your own… Research has found that using CBD oil regularly can give you the helping hand you need to give your addiction the boot. The oil helps to reduce the side effects associated with withdrawal and curb the pesky cravings. It is also far better than using over-the-counter nicotine patches or similar as CBD oil is a completely natural remedy.

Moving on from addiction, CBD oil has been found through research to help treat more serious disorders like psychosis. People deemed to be ‘psychos’ were treated using CBD and displayed significantly less abnormal activity, interesting right?

The list goes on for the types of disorders that CBD oil can help with but hopefully now it is clear to you that the answer to ‘what is CBD oil’ is not as controversial as you might think.