The difference between being engaged in an activity and passively going along with it or being bored is amazing.

For the last few weeks meal time with my daughter has felt like a struggle. She didn’t want to eat and I was struggling to keep my attention through each meal. I started to dislike meal times.

But this last week I realized I needed to put more effort into my engagement. I started turning meal time into a game and a learning experience for her – she has to eat a set number of bites for me to spell a word. She loves spelling and counting, so I count down to the next word in different languages.

I’m engaged because I have to remember what number I’m on, which language I’m counting in, and which word is next up to spell. She’s engaged because she loves spelling and counting. We’re interacting better than ever before and we are both having fun.

I love meal times now.