It’s often said that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. With the Miller family, that’s true in more ways than one. Jack Miller, general manager of the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess, takes advantage of this precious time each morning with his family of six to bond and get the day off to a solid start.
“Beginning our day with breakfast made-to-order is my simple contribution to my wife Shea; daughters Olivia, Anna, and Emma; and son Jack. On the rotating menu: bacon, scrambled eggs, waffles, chicken sausage, hash browns, yogurt, granola, grapefruit and toast or biscuits, with a protein vitamin shake for me,” says Miller. “I was a short-order cook as a teenager and I enjoy doing this for my family every morning. I also often serve my kids breakfast in bed. Then, while Shea is making the lunches, she and I talk about the day’s schedule ahead: school, sports practice, dance lessons, carpools and any special events at the Princess.”
It’s not just breakfast, of course. Like most busy families with hectic schedules and a myriad of after-school activities, it takes a concerted effort to bring everyone together around the dinner table. Studies have shown the many benefits of families who eat together on a consistent basis: It can improve children’s self-esteem, communication skills, nutrition and performance in school and deepens the connection with one another. The Miller family tries to gather at least three nights a week to reconnect.
“Family dinner time is just as important for our family to come together. Shea makes our family favorites including a fantastic grilled chicken dish, taco Tuesday is always fun, and her spaghetti squash is my favorite,” Miller says. “As a second generation Italian family, it is woven in the fabric of our lives to break bread, share stories around the kitchen table and our faith is an integral part of that.
“We begin dinner holding hands in prayer and God always has a seat,” Miller continues. “We usually go out to lunch after church on Sunday, and family meals on vacation are always particularly special. We like to discover the sights and savor the local flavors of the city we are visiting. Through food and family, we are creating memories and a bond I hope they will cherish forever…I know I will.”
By // Valerie Lee