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Everyday Food & Drink Parenting

“Getting Creative in the Kitchen”

I can still clearly remember my grandmother saying “this soup is actually very good!”  I was beaming with pride as the creation I made on the stove was not only edible but also delicious.

As I visited my grandparents pretty regularly, I think letting me mix all their close to rotting vegetables into a pot of water was a cheap and entertaining way to keep me occupied with a fun activity.  After all, if a watched pot never boils, I could have possibly stood there all day.

I remember the excitement of picking the vegetables out of the drawers, making my own choices. I mean, if I was six years old at the time I’d be surprised.  It’s funny looking back, one of my favorite memories to this day and I think, “I’d never let my daughter waste out vegetables over a burning hot stove.”  She might get hurt!  She could get burned!  The soup would be a disaster!  There would be a mess everywhere… Wait a second, why deprive her of creating such a memory.  She’s definitely smarter than I was at that age, and the trust and freedom to cook started a passion in the kitchen that I still carry to this day.

My grandparents trusted me in the kitchen that day, and the food came out great.  Even if it came out poorly, I don’t know that they would have told me.  I do know that they would have told me it was OK, that things don’t always turn out great, and I could try again another time.  They would have been right there for me no matter what the outcome.  It was that encouragement, that kindness, that support that my grandmother have me as she bravely tasted the soup I made, it was that feeling that I never lost.  Forget the soup for a second, just remember how important it is to trust and encourage your kids.

How to make “Kid Soup”

1.  Get a pot and add a cup of water.
2.  Open the refrigerator and spice cabinet and let them at it.
3.  Offer some gentle suggestions that maybe cinnamon isn’t any good in a soup.
4.  Apologize for that, cinnamon is a great versatile spice used in many savory international dishes.
5.  Be brave, and try it only when they say “I’m done”.
6.  Just know how much it meant to them.

Helping in the kitchen is a lot of fun for your children.  It might be a headache sometimes for you, but rest assured, cracking an egg into a bowl and mixing is creating confidence, trust, and a whole lot more than just a beaten egg.  I urge you to include them more, and as much as you can.   Besides, whats one batch of rotten vegetables cost you when the trade off is a lifelong memory?

Photo uploaded to our Instagram page.

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