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For 25 years my family’s restaurant would close one day of the week. It was either Monday or Tuesday and on those nights we dined out as a family. We typically went for a steak or seafood dinner. Who remembers the Plank House, Chart House, Velvet Turtle, McKenna’s Creek, Bobby McGee’s, or Five Crowns (the later still there)? We also would venture out to Los Angeles and explore restaurants such as Jason’s, Scandia, Lawyer’s, etc.

It was important for my parents to have family meals together even though we predominately operated a dinner business in those days. I do not know how they did it. My brothers are 14 years older and 9 years older and even with our lives being at such different stages, my father always made certain we had family dinners on a weekly base.

Sundays were for Sunday Drives where I would take off up or down the coast to explore beaches and breakfast places with them. My brothers had similar Sunday Drives when they were younger as well.

As hard as my parents always worked, they always set aside time for us to dine as a family and spend time as a family which is so much work when you own a restaurant that feels 24/7. I remember my father would take me to Disneyland (in those days kids only went to Disneyland once a year if that) and sometimes I could see him almost falling asleep when we were waiting in line. On one visit it really struck me how tired he was yet he was at Disneyland with me as if he had all the time in the world.

We eventually got caught up in “the sign of the times” and we opened 7 nights a week for 29 years except for major holidays. As of July 2012, we returned to closing on Mondays. On this night we venture out with mom and dad to explore new and favorite restaurants. Tonight was no different and we had a satisfying dinner together. Mom ate her mashed potatoes and steak and of course my father tried everything we ordered.

www.carina-cristiano.com

(562)760-8957

55th Anniversary Blog: Day 5 Taking Time for Family Time

For 25 years my family’s restaurant would close one day of the week. It was either Monday or Tuesday and … Read More!