The other night Samantha said, “Daddy’s a better cook than you.” I was shocked, since Daddy doesn’t cook. So I said, “What? What has Daddy cooked?” Her response, “He made soup and hamburgers yesterday and they were both better than this.” Thanks, kid.
Sam stayed home sick from school on Tuesday. Sean got the two of them In-n-Out burgers for lunch and he heated up a can of Campbell’s chicken noodle soup for dinner when Sam didn’t want the pasta I made. (I have to note, he tried to use a can opener on the pull tab lid of the soup.) Meanwhile, I had made potato tacos for dinner. Refried beans mixed with salsa, diced potatoes (you know, hash brown style), taco shells, lettuce, tomatoes, and cheese for the non-vegans in the house. Pretty healthy and tasty, but not greasy or salty. I put the ingredients on a plate and let them make their own tacos. Sometimes they eat more of it than others. Last night, I think Ella and Sam had cheese and taco shells for dinner. Penny also ate the potatoes.
Now, that wasn’t a hard meal to make by any means, but it did take some time and, as is frequently the case, I got complaints. So why do I bother? I could just go and grab McDonald’s every day, or go to a semi- healthy place like Panera bread, and save myself some grief.
Of course, I bother so my kids will hopefully learn to be generally healthy eaters when they grow up and know how to cook a little. To that extent, I let them help me sometimes (depending on my patience). Ella and Sam both love to help me make smoothies and know the ingredients needed to do so (including the hemp powder I’ve started putting in). When we go to the grocery store, they help pick out the produce and sometimes we buy things just because they want to try them (like purple potatoes, a little earthy, but not bad).
I let Samantha help make dinners quite a bit during nap time. This week she assembled the pizza almost completely by herself, including making my vegan portion first and helping herself to some tofu in the process. She also has started helping me chop vegetables. I was a little scared to hand a knife to a 4 year old, but she does a really decent job. Her pieces aren’t uniform, and she doesn’t do the ends because she’s afraid she might cut herself (which I think demonstrates good judgement), but overall, she does well. Do you let your kids help in the kitchen?