There are so many things for kids to do today. And I know that they are as A.D.D. as we are now, with all the lights, sounds, and screens we have to look at. But I really feel it’s important to keep things simple. We try to limit TV time, there are lots of books in the house, and I hope to teach my daughter as many domestic things as possible. When she is ready to knit, I will be ready; I’m learning to sew now so when the time comes, I can teach her. My mother was very creative and made lots of things. I just don’t know that it ever occurred to her to teach me these as well.
The other day I had my little tutu girl help me out in the kitchen. Well, she’s really just small enough yet to sit on a stool and get into everything. But she looks cute doing it. I realized that when I use my stand mixer she points up and pays attention to the sound but doesn’t really have any idea what is going on. So, I thought she deserved a closer look. She is 19 months old now so she can handle it.
I propped her up (in her tutu) on a stool and begged her not to move. We made some icing for a cake and boy did she get into that. I actually caught her sneaking the spatula and licking some for herself. Glad she liked it (and it made for a great camera moment), but I was trying to do something and I needed a little cooperation. I could hear my mom in my head: “I’ve got to get this done,” “You’re too little,” “You’re in the way”—but I had to block the voices.
See, I want my daughter to help in the kitchen as soon as she is ready. I want her to know how to cook for herself and have a good relationship with food. I think it’s important to know how to take care of yourself and understand where your food comes from, how best to get it and what to do with it when you’ve got it.
I love my mom and she did the best she could but she was always nervous with us in the kitchen. She was always yelling for us to get out and let her do what she had to do. I get it. But my best memories are the times we were allowed in there. Making pies for Thanksgiving. Making sugar cookies for Christmas and getting to decorate them with all kinds of fun stuff. But I didn’t get out of there knowing too much else about food.
So, we join the CSA available to us. We go to the farmer’s market and try new things like fresh, local milk. We grow veggies and herbs in the backyard and we get our meat from local vendors. All so she understands food and how to use it. And the health benefits aren’t bad either.
Now, back to that icing.. .