[Or why my kids never find anything Good to eat.]
I’m kind of getting tired of hearing this question. I’ve heard it for the last 20 some odd years. I have heard this question when I have had to slam the cupboard closed just so the box of Cheez-it’s wouldn’t fall out. Darn shame they were white cheddar and not cheddar. Because if you haven’t noticed…white cheddar does not look like cheddar, which is orange. Which of course, is a very important difference in the minds of a 6 and 9-year-old.
Is there anything good to eat? Is the question at hand.
This is of course the never-ending battle parents have with their children. There is never anything to eat. Well, never anything Good to eat.
I’m pretty sure you have something in your house that can be consumed. I know I do. We have fruits, vegetables, meats, breads, and various snacks. Some of these are healthy snacks, others are just snacks. But we have food. I’m going to go out on a limb here and assume you do too.
But…it’s just not the right food. Like marshmallows. Or maybe just a box of sugar cubes would suffice. If I suggest eating something like, say…a sandwich, I have just asked my child to eat roasted grasshoppers cooked on stick over an open fire in their little sugar addicted minds.
“I’m hungry, can I have something to eat?” thus wails, the poor starving child.
“Want me to make you a sandwich? Or a bowl of cereal?” I suggest.
“No, I want something good. That sounds yucky.” the child leans against the cupboard for the full effect.
“What do you want then? An apple? Oh, how about peaches? I can open a can.” Working on my Parent of the year award.
“Don’t we have anything good?” is the famished child asks.
I do my best not to lose it. I count to 10 and think…in less than 10 years, feeding themselves will be their own problem.
Till my 23-year-old visits and looks in my fridge.
“Have anything good to eat?” I hear her ask.
“Yes.” I respond.
“Like what? I don’t see anything in the fridge, what is this? You’re cheese is moldy.” I hear.
” That’s Blue Cheese. It’s supposed to look like that. Hey I have an idea!” I said in a lilt of a voice.
“Oh yeah? what?” She answers back in anticipation of some delectable treat.
“Check your own fridge.” I say.
*Crickets* Fridge door closes slowly.
That’s the crux of the matter. It really doesn’t matter what age your children are, they still think that your fridge is theirs. And once again, you have nothing good to eat.
It’s really hard to blame them. When I was younger I was the same way. My mother, being raised in the Depression, always had something in our house to eat. In fact, when I came over to visit after I had left the nest, she would feed me. Insist on it actually. I rarely said ‘No’.
But there was a time I was a tad ‘picky’. Like at Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners when they served Candy Yams, or also know as, sweet potatoes. I was not into that. Here was this orange gooey mess that looked like aged mashed potatoes that had been pushed back into the far recesses of the fridge since 1963 and I was supposed to eat it. I didn’t, never did as a child. Refused.
Then my father didn’t finish a certain piece of succulent turkey that I had my eye on. He looked at me, asked me if I wanted it. I wiped the drool off my face and nodded. But it had some of that icky candy yams on it. Unfortunately, I had to eat it, to eat he piece of turkey.
“Hey, these are sweet!” I exclaimed in shock. My mother, such a sweet woman, gave me a look with her head cocked to one side and a smirk of a smile.
“Yes they are, why do you think we call them candy yams?” She berated me. I ate two helpings. I was 20 years old when I first tried them. Now, I make them every year for holiday meals. (The brown sugar is the key.)
It’s really hard to keep ones cool when you hear that your full cupboards are worthless. That no matter what you buy at the store, it isn’t worthy of little palates. I try to remember that my son eat’s broccoli, and loves it. That my daughter is a very good eater. And that my older two have their own fridge.
I have to remember, not only my own youth, but that sometimes, even after going to the store and buying food, I find myself not wanting anything I have bought. Of course what I do want usually requires me to cook it, and I hear the whines of…
“I’m not eating that!” or “Could I have a cookie first?” to “Didn’t we get anything good?” That I take a deep breath and look at my wife in the most loving way and say.
“Wanna order a Pizza?”