Monday, August 27, 2007


I love cooking: the chopping, the dicing, the simmering. It's relaxing and the immediate rewards are obvious. Unless, of course you have kids. Then the rewards become more of a punishment.

"Moooo-OM, I hate chicken chili. Yuck!"

"Moooooo-om, why did you make that?!"

"I want to go to a restaurant; I hate what you made."

If I'm lucky enough to have cooked in relative peace or, as it's known in to me, being interrupted no more than fourteen times to settle disputes, get some toy down or provide a snack that they simply must have this instant because the poor little darling it staaaaarving, then I'm able to handle the complaints with relative cheer. I shrug my shoulders and savor the compilations on my own plate and ignore the theatrics across the table.

But then there's most days. Most days I'm hardly even able to cook with the kids running in and out and needing this and that. Most days my patience supply is dwindling by supper time and the complaints are actually very annoying.

"Moooo-om, this is the worst supper in the entire world."

"Oh really?" I my reply on those nights. "Good. I was trying my best to make something you'd really, really hate. I'm glad I succeeded. Eat it anyway."

This summer I've noticed I've been doing far less cooking than usual. I wonder if this is why.


Liz said...

Ugh, this was the hardest "mom" hurdle for me to tackle. Not being able to cook in peace. i can't tell you how many meals I've ruined because I was either interrupted so many times that I totally misread the recipe, or something, burned, sat too long, etc while I was taking care of someone small's RIGHT NOW needs.

sixty-five said...

It goes with the territory! Just finished a charming book of essays called "Alone in the Kitchen with an Eggplant". It includes a piece by Holly Hughes called "Luxury". A brief excerpt: "A second child was born, and I now faced the task of cooking three meals a night - one of pureed slop, one of buttered pasta and chicken fingers, and one ragout of rabbit forestiere. Three meals was obviously too many. One had to go. Guess which one went?"

Superdad said...

We taught the kids a little rhyme that we have to remind them of from time to time. Here it is: "You get what you get and you don't throw a fit." We refuse to make special meals for M & H. They will eat what is served or they will eat nothing. As I tell the kids, Supermom is not a short order cook.

Beisdes, Supermom is a great cook and I am not going to give that up so a 7 year old and a 4 year old can have chicken fingers ten times a week.

sixty-five said...

Yes, I didn't mean to suggest that you do otherwise. You'll be surprised at how quickly this phase will pass.

Liz said...

Too funny, in our house it is, "You get what you get and you don't get upset." Good for you for not giving in, I know too many parents that do it and having them over can be a total pain. Mostly because it sucks to be the one parent at the table telling my kid she can't have a meal that consists of apples and peanut butter.

Alexis Jacobs said...

I love to cook, yet the lack of appreciation my family shows at times is the reason cooking has moved from a fun thing to do to a chore.

terri said...

...strikes a chord with me as well. :)