A little more than I expected transpired last night.

My dread of the pending commitment to surrender my kitchen to the kids, played just as I thought in the early afternoon. Despite his excitement about cooking whatever he wanted, my 7-yr. old lost his enthusiasm upon the realization that we had to go to the grocery store.

“What??!! Why would I have to go to the store??!! IT TAKES FOREVER!!!”
(Okay, for a boy, he’s a little dramatic. And, can we ask the question… where does he think the food comes from?)
“Welcome to my world kid. If you want brownies (his plan for dessert), get in the car.”

After his mini-tantrum, followed by a “consequence” (I wasn’t in the mood for an attitude), I got in the car with a directive that he’d better get in quickly or we weren’t going. Slow Walker (picture Tim Conway scooting across the floor while Mrs. Wiggins (Carol Burnett), filing nails & smacking gum, rolls her eyes) reluctantly made his way to the vehicle.

His mood lifted as we walked in the store and ran into one of our neighbors. Mike shook Slow Walker’s hand and encouraged him by pointing to the groceries he had just purchased. Mike explained that his bagged items would soon be their own dinner, cooked by him. Slow Walker smiled sheepishly and a little kick entered his step. As we made our way to get butter for the brownies, I began to explain to him the layout of a grocery store, realizing I have never taken the time to teach the kids anything about shopping. So he learned about where they display juice, cheese, butter, milk. Then we talked about why the same product made by different manufacturers can cost more or less than another. We looked for the items he needed, bought something for his sister, weighed fruit and squeezed tomatoes. It was a blast.

We paid and made our way home. Thus began our amazing evening. Gone was my slow-walking sour puss, welcome home super helpful kitchen boy. He cleared the table, gathered ingredients, eagerly listened, followed instructions and emptied the dishwasher (I’m not kidding!!). The girls hovered, itching at the opportunity to get involved. But it was his call. He cooked, set the table (with his sisters help), and I served his food. NOT ONE PERSON complained about our meal. We ate, chatted and truly enjoyed our time together. Then… he cleaned it all up. I helped him wash the dishes, but barely. He genuinely wanted to do it all.

Wow! I don’t know if the rest of our Month of Meals will be anything like Day 1… but what a way to start! All I can say is … Bon appetite! … and stay tuned.

Thanks for walking the road with me.

The proof is in the pudding … even on paper plates :)

at the stove

paper plates!

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