March 22 17

We spend a lot of time meal planning and making shopping lists and dinner-making schedules in this house. We both work full time and between extra-curriculars and various keeping-children-alive appointments, having a solid what’s for dinner plan helps. {I know you’ve got your pinterest fingers all ready to share all of my meal-planning tips, don’t you?}

Except that it doesn’t.

Help, that is.

There is not one dinner in our rotation that all three of my children will eat without complaint. What my children like on Sunday, they no longer like on Tuesday. Isabella stopped eating pizza from anywhere but one restaurant that is nowhere near my house [In fact, she has requested that we move down south to be closer to it.] Emily will only eat uncooked baked ziti because once it’s been baked she loses interest. Josh will only eat rice that’s not basmati but just go on and guess what kind everyone else likes. Isabella stopped eating hamburgers last week which were her absolute favorite the week before. SOMEONE who won’t be named doesn’t think that breakfast for dinner is sufficient dinner food. (Her name rhymes with Shmemily). Everyone likes eggs but each child likes them prepared in three different ways. Emily doesn’t like certain smells or certain kinds of breads, and Josh only eats vegetables that are green, but only sometimes. “CHICKEN AGAIN?” is a special fan favorite. (Although if I’m being honest now that I’ve seen the video of that giant chicken I’m pretty sure I’m both traumatized and a vegetarian again)

And if we ask them what they want for dinner, they only have one answer: sushi.

So meal planning usually ends in tears and hunger and possibly probably finding someone going through the kitchen cabinets at midnight complaining that there’s no food in our house.

When my friend Miriam told me that her kids each make dinner one night a week — and her oldest is the same age as my youngest — I had a bit of a lightbulb moment. If they are going to complain when they have two capable cooks (one arguably better than the other — I won’t say which one) willing and able to cook them delicious daily meals and still want to complain, they can make their own dinners.

This week, we began this new family initiative.

Isabella, with a tiny bit of assistance from her sous chef, gave a shopping list to her dad, and then proceeded to make beef and broccoli and rice noodles for dinner.

Now, they probably won’t like it next week, but this week all three of my children completely cleared their plates and left no leftovers (which, incidentally, no one ever eats anywhere because my spoiled children have issues with food that isn’t cooked completely fresh in front of them.)

Tonight Emily is making sushi bowls. And tomorrow Josh is going to learn to use the bbq and make us something delicious that hopefully will not give us salmonella.

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This has the potential to be the best parenting decision I’ve ever made since making them go to culinary boot camp.

  1. They are all so little in those photos!

    I eat the same stuff like 5 days in a row. If I didn’t eat leftovers, I’d be screwed. Ha!

    Comment by Kristabella on March 22, 2017
  2. 2011!

    Comment by ali on March 22, 2017

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