When my kids were little, I started showing them around the kitchen. I thought it was important for them to learn at an early age that cooking can be fun and not just a chore. They started with the basics like pouring already portioned ingredients into a bowl and stirring to make a cake. Eventually, they learned to use a mixer and chop vegetables with kid safe knives. Fast forward to today with a 12 and 13 year old….
Our after school schedule is a little on the crazy side. I am gone on Mondays and Wednesdays to coach volleyball. On Tuesday and Thursday afternoons I take my son to lacrosse practice. I refuse to succumb to the convenience of fast food or take out, so what is my other option? Have the kids help get dinner on the table! How do I do it? It’s easy…
I’m a planner…I aways have been, I always will be. Some people say I’m “Type A”. I just think my way of doing things make sense!! Anyway, every weekend, I look at my week and see what the days and evenings look like and make my menu from there. No matter if I have 3 hours or 15 minutes to prepare dinner before picking up the kids, I can always find a dish that can be mostly prepared by me, but finished by them. I leave instructions on what time and temperature to preheat the oven, put food in, turn on the stove, etc. Everything is ready and set to be cooked by the time I leave for the afternoon activities, they just execute the instructions. So, far everything has been fantastic and they have really stepped up!
I know their limitations and what I am comfortable with them doing without adult supervision. They don’t use the grill and they don’t use knives when I’m not around. They also don’t cook meat on a skillet, but my daughter is a champ at sautéing kale!! The point I’m trying to get across is that if you teach your kids to embrace cooking while they are young, it will make your life much easier and it will cut down on unhealthy take out. Also, it’s important to know their limitations. We all need little sous chefs in our lives!!!!
So jealous! I am totally type A and a planner but not like Denise as she takes it to a totally different level. Maybe I also know DFACS would be at my door if I had the 5 year old cooking dinner at home alone?! Ha! One day, I hope to teach my kids what my mom had me do in the kitchen and involve them like Denise does with her kiddos! Well done! ~Melissa