29 December 2013


My meal planning and preparation skills lately have not been stellar.  Sometime last week it was bedtime, and unfortunately delicious dinner had not yet magically appeared in front of my children.  I looked into hiring a house elf, but it turns out that they don't actually exist.  I lacked the mental energy to make any food related decisions, so I just opened the pantry and asked the little redhead what he wanted to eat.

First he asked for Nutella.  I told him no.  Then he asked for chocolate pudding.  I told him no.  Then he asked for "spicy oatmeal."  Spicy oatmeal is oatmeal with cinnamon and nutmeg on it.  I told him yes.  My little girl is not as articulate yet, but when I got the oatmeal out of the pantry she pointed and started giggling, so I assumed she approved.  

As I spent approximately 128 seconds preparing the requested meal I allowed myself a moment of parental pride.  My little boy made a nutritional decision that was simultaneously health conscious, budget friendly, and low maintenance.  How often does the parent of a two year old get to say that?  And while I was proud, I was also somewhat bewildered.  I remember being only slightly older than him and absolutely hating oatmeal.  I remember shouting indignantly at my mother that when I had my own kids I would never, ever, force them to eat oatmeal.  So far I have remained true to this promise.  I don't have to force my kids to eat oatmeal.  They request it.  

After they finished eating, I started cleaning the mess.  Oatmeal always makes a big mess.  It ends up on hands, smeared across faces, smashed in hair, and sometimes inexplicably inside diapers.  While I was washing off his face with a dishrag the little redhead said, "No mama, this is oatmeal.  It has to be washed in the bathtub."  His little sister started chanting "bath, bath, bath."  My adorable little kids don't actually love eating oatmeal.  They just love taking baths.