We live in an old house, so we don't have an open kitchen. Our 80+ year old home even had a door between the dining room and kitchen that has since been removed. I'm told it was common in the 1920's and 1930's to do this because the host or hostess didn't want his or her guests to see the chaos of the kitchen. This seems unfathomable to me now, since we can't keep guests out of the kitchen, nor would we want to do so.
But in our older home, without the help of a demolition crew, any meals eaten are out of sight of the main kitchen activity. Usually this is not a huge problem, but lately G has taken a disliking to the fact that if he is eating, he cannot see what is going on in the kitchen.
If I am trying to prepare my meal or R's meal and G is at the table (usually happens at lunch time), he will not sit and eat his lunch. If he does sit, he gets up ump-teen times to see what action is going on around the corner. I kindly tell him to return to his seat, which he does, but only briefly.
Over the winter break, this new habit was a minor inconvenience, but now, with school back in session, it is downright maddening. Lunchtime is served around 11am so R can get ready and be at school in time for afternoon kindergarten. Since the timing necessitates for G and R to sometimes eat while I am still ready-ing other things, G is in constant up-and-down from the table mode.
So this whole situation brings up a question: how strict are you with meal time? I hate to become too rigid about a casual weekday lunch, but at the same time, I wonder if I am being too lenient in not enforcing him staying at the table.