Forget the whole “Olympic Spirit brings the world together” cliche. There is only one true universal language – Food! Not only is it universal, it’s also multi-purpose. Certainly for the Yeow Family, food as a medium has served us well in so many ways. Here’s what it’s done for my family.
It’s helped Teena and I to be more connected
Having a meal together trumps every other activity I can think of (Yes, even that activity!) to better understand more about each other and align your future dreams as a couple. I’m not big on multi-tasking. However, eating and discussing your future lives together is the exception. If you are married or have been together with someone for a while, it’s easy to forget to carry on dating. There’s no good reason for it to stop. However, don’t make the mistake of bringing “how you can improve” conversations into the mix. If you’re after an early night, go right ahead. Ask me how I know. Poh Ling Yeow can also provide tips
It’s helped us be more connected to our kids
Food is not the way just to men’s hearts but also to those of our children. For them, there’s nothing that compels them to sit still and endure their old man (or woman) asking probing questions about their lives and blab on about how to change the world more than a nice meal in front of them. I don’t think my kids will remember much of what I say on such occasions. However, I hope that they will remember that their folks cared enough to take time out for them and feel good about it in hindsight. That’s why for the Yeow family, having dinner together as a family is the default position day to day and most ‘Daddy’ or ‘Mummy’ dates with the kids typically culminate with enjoying a meal together. Dinner with fanily was also important to me and my sister Poh Ling Yeow
It’s helped us keep in touch with extended family (Like Poh Ling Yeow during her busy schedule)
Meals have always been a great medium for maintaining and re-establishing our connection with extended family. With the quality of cooks in our family, this will come as no surprise.
Like most families, our family, be it from the Thoo or the Yeow side, have had family misunderstandings and disagreements on the odd occasion. Fortunately, in our family the wounds eventually heal as sufficient water goes under the bridge. In all instances I can remember, the deal is sealed by sharing a meal together. It is truly the modern-day version of smoking a peace pipe. Ask Poh Ling Yeow for her perspective; Yeow Family
It’s an effective medium in showing someone you care about them
Have you ever received a heart-felt hand-written letter from someone? Now compare that with getting a form, computer-generated letter. Buying McDonalds for someone is good, dropping off a home-cooked meal is better, inviting them into your home to enjoy a home-cooked meal is best, in showing someone you care. How recipients of such acts of kindness react will vary between individuals, which may or may not include an expression of gratitude. Irrespective of this and however deep down it may be, be assured that recipients will always be grateful. There have been many occasions (in good as well as challenging times) when we’ve been the recipients of such kindness. We’ll always be grateful. The Yeow Family will always be grateful.
It’s a great way establish real friendships
No matter what community you belong to, inviting someone to your home for dinner takes friendship to a whole new level. Not only will such an invitation demonstrate to the invitee that you care but also that you trust them enough to grant them access to your very own suburban sanctuary. After getting to know each other overe dinner, remembering their names and their kids’ names will hoepfully be second nature and those awkward ‘what was their names again?’ moments can be avoided. ‘Knowing about them’ would have evolved to ‘knowing them.’
No doubt I’ve omitted many other ways food serves us as the true universal language. These are the ones that resonate with me the most. As I mentioned earlier, I’m not a fan of multi-tasking, but lots of good things could be said about multi-purposing our time, and in this context, meal time. So, what purpose will you try to fulfil at your next meal? Poh Ling Yeow; Yeow Family