America. We have a problem. Family Dinners.



Do the following statistics motivate you? Certainly research is only a part of it – but these facts are compelling. Where many researchers say that family dinners are not happening, I’m encouraged that so many are! And there’s great reasons to commit.

FAMILY DINNER – Point to Ponder 1

Researchers have reported a consistent association between family dinner frequency and teen academic performance. Adolescents who ate family meals five to seven times a week were twice as likely to get A’s in school as those who ate dinner with their families fewer than two times a week. (Source)


FAMILY DINNER – Point to Ponder 2

Over the past 15 years researchers have confirmed what parents have known for a long time: sharing a family meal is good for the spirit, the brain and the health of all family members. Recent studies link regular family dinners with many behaviors that parents pray for: lower rates of substance abuse, teen pregnancy and depression, as well as higher grade-point averages and self-esteem. The icing on the cake is that regular family meals also lower the rates of obesity and eating disorders in children and adolescents. What else can families do that takes only about an hour a day and packs such a punch? (Source)


FAMILY DINNER – Point to Ponder 3

For starters, researchers found that for young children, dinnertime conversation boosts vocabulary even more than being read aloud to. The researchers counted the number of rare words – those not found on a list of 3,000 most common words – that the families used during dinner conversation. Young kids learned 1,000 rare words at the dinner table, compared to only 143 from parents reading storybooks aloud. Kids who have a large vocabulary read earlier and more easily. (Source)




These facts can either discourage us – or motivate us. Just because family dinners aren’t that common in our culture AND they are HARD to do – doesn’t mean we shouldn’t fight for it. The research proves it’s a terrific decision for the emotional and physical health of our families.

I do not discount tired kids, busy schedules and picky eaters. Those struggles are real. But they can be overcome with progress not perfection.


Tips For Family Dinner Success:


Set a Goal

Lock arms with your spouse and your kids (they don’t forget promises) to set a goal. If you don’t eat together ever – set a goal for once a week. If you eat together twice, make a goal for 3. And so on. Progress is the key. My friend Sandra Stanley said when hers were teens and all over town – they picked one day and NOTHING could conflict with it. No playdates, no sports practices, no meetings. The entire family committed to being there on this night.



Change the Focus

We often focus on the eating. Making it such a fight over what they will and will not eat. Sure, they need to learn to try new foods and learn to sit in their chair. For our family – dinner has become less about the food and more about the meaningful conversations. This is when we catch up and talk. We also have fun. So, they aren’t always avoiding coming to the table, they are excited. You can do Conversation Cups or any number of games, books or traditions that you love.





I have found that my kids do love structure and knowing what to expect. You can have a “Taco Tuesday” or “Make Our Own Pizza Night” or “Friday Game Night” or even themed dinners. Or, let your kids take turns setting the table. They can get creative with their set up and selections for decor. This creates fun and interest in that time together.



There is one major reason why I create new products for the marketplace that is busting with products – to empower moms and change little lives through innovation in the home. I believe more in solutions than complaining. So, when family dinners started bugging me – I wanted to be able to offer a fun tool to help.


Whether you choose the cups or not – please consider meeting your family for more memorable moments this year.

NO PHONE ZONE! Unplug to plug in.

Conversation Cups FAQs

  • What size are they? They are 16 oz glass cups.
  • How are they packaged? They come in a branded box (see photo above) that makes them an easy gift to give! Just toss a bow on top.
  • Are they cups or glasses? They are GLASS – great quality. We have heard your request on plastic and will consider that in the coming months. Don’t forget these are special and definitely for those kids that can read – who can learn to handle glass at dinner.
  • Are they all different? Nope! Four identical glasses in a set – so no bickering between siblings. Everyone has the same fun cup with many questions to choose from.
  • Where to buy? Individual customers can buy from my shop or at any local gift shop that carries Magnolia Lane Collection products. Are you a buyer or looking to buy wholesale? Then, contact  Magnolia Lane Collection.


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  1. Hello Courtney! So glad I saw this pop up in my FB feed today. As a pediatric speech pathologist, you have NO IDEA how much I love these!!!!! I MUST have them and tell all my clients about them too!!! 🙂 Fabulous idea and well needed product!

  2. I can hear the giggles and laughter now at the dinner table with these great glasses! We are always looking for something new and exciting!!

  3. Love your book and scripture cards!! I began the new year with our three little girls memorizing a new scripture card each week. We write the verse each day and recite. Thank you for bringing the word of God into our home!!
    Blessings to you and your family!!

  4. I have fond memories of family dinners with my family of origin. I look forward to instilling that tradition with my husband and two sons. Thanks for the giveaway.

  5. I love these! We have dinner together every night but need to do a better job with 4 way conversations instead of just my husband and I trying to get a few words in.

  6. I love your ideas! I would love to give these to each of my children who have little ones at home ( we have 4 adult married children with their own families). It is so hard to find family time & then to use it well.

  7. I seriously love this idea!!!! I like that it is an intentional effort to get your children and family talking together!!!! Would LOVE these in my house!!!! Thanks for the opportunity to possibly win one!!

  8. These are a beautiful reminder of what family is all about…caring enough to share these moments together with intentional love and concern.
    Thank you!

  9. Growing up in a broken home, the dinner table was NOT a favorite time of day for me. As an adult, I determined to make this special daily time together an enjoyable priority in our family. But truth be told, there are days that the conversations could be a bit more lively. Love the idea of these cups to assist. Thanks for the great tips!

  10. I love these cups! I also really love our family dinners. They aren’t perfect by any means, and I’ve been known to be stressed that time of the day, but it’s always good to sit down … together. I’m enjoying your book right now and especially have been encouraged by the joy chapter.

  11. We do family dinners at least 6 if not 7 nights a week! My kids are still young (9, 8, and 1), but we have our fair share of weeknight activities (dance, basketball practice, Faith Formation, etc). It’s important to me to do it because that’s how I grew up, and I believe that it really does help the kids feel more connected to their families!!! Thank you for sponsoring this!

  12. First time I’ve found you and these cups look fun! And I wholeheartedly agree with family dinner time. Most of the time we do this right. Although my oldest is almost 12—so I am hoping I stay true to this commitment during our teen years.

  13. These glasses are the neatest thing that I have seen in a very long time! Would LOVE, LOVE, LOVE to win these! Keeping my fingers crossed. :0)

  14. I love these cups! I am a children’s program director at our church and oh how I would love to be able to give each family in our program a set of these!

  15. Even ONE cup for a family would be great…. Like the Native American tradition, “he who holds the feather speaks”….. He who holds the GLASS speaks while others listen, and ‘pass the cup’ around the table until EACH family member has taken an opportunity/chance to speak.

  16. I’m very excited for this upcoming month’s love ’em up challenge! I think family dinners would be a great way to show love to our families! Actually, since we do dinners generally, I was trying to think how I could show more love at dinner and when you mentioned letting the kids set the table up pretty, I thought, “What a great idea!” That, and maybe for the month of February, we will be using China plates for dinner…because it is a special time! It is something we have commited to. Thanks for your posts and those cups are beautiful. If you do end up making plastic ones, let us know! We have a habit of breaking glass in our family but I love them anyways.

  17. Interesting article, love the cups.
    We are not good about dinner around the table.
    As a homeschool mom I find I am ready for a break from the kids come evening. :p Maybe it is time to rethink that.

  18. Thank you for the wonderful article about family dinnertime! As a Pampered Chef consultant, I have started offering Freezer Meal Workshops as a way to help busy families take the stress out of meal prep. I shared your post many times on Facebook because of its great info.

  19. These conversation cups are a fantastic way to get the conversation going and past the typical “how was your day” talk. I love the initiative!

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