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Hello and welcome to a small snapshot of what life's like inside my little corner of the world. I'm Shelly, I have a satisfying career and I'm shackled to my supurb husband. I'm the step-monster to his stylish son and together we have two stunningly beautiful daughters - Sugar and Spice, two stubborn dogs and a squawking bird. These are just some of the stories of my life.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

A Family Meal

I have an eleven year old who loves to cook.

This works out perfectly for me because I hate to cook; so I have no qualms letting her cook our dinner each night.

Well, that’s not exactly true…..I may have one or two complaints: the first being that she always makes a huge mess and never cleans it up.

She loves to cook but hates to clean – not a good combination.

I’m not talking about a little dribble over the pan, or a splatter here and there; I’m talking about an explosion! Sauce everywhere - all over the edge of the pan, all over the stove, covering the entire spoon, on the walls, etc.

How does one get sauce on the walls anyway??

When I asked her this exact question, she said it was from ‘tapping’ the spoon against the edge of the pan.

Really?? I know I’m not much of a cooker but when I do cook I often tap my spoon against the pan and I’ve never managed to get sauce all over the walls like this……She must have the strength of Godzilla.

She also often ‘forgets’ to put ingredients back where she got them from; that is unless she isn’t supposed to be using them – like the spices.

I have told her, on numerous occasions, that there is no need for her to be seasoning the food. It’s usually already pre-seasoned and if it does need seasoning I want to help her with that, to ensure she doesn’t use too much.

Have I mentioned that I’m an extremely picky eater??

I love that she loves to cook. I love to let her cook because that means I won’t have to do it. I can even deal with the messes – a little bit. But I can not eat food that doesn’t taste good or has too much of something in it – like salt. BLECH!!

Last night she cooked Chicken Fettuccini Alfredo. I know it sounds impressive but it’s really no big deal. It’s a pre-packaged, pre-seasoned meal (Hamburger Helper or in this case Chicken Helper).

All you do is heat up the chicken, add water to the noodles and sauce, then mix them together; simple, right??? I even bought pre-cooked, pre-cut chicken.

8:00 pm – “Dinner is served.” She announces from the kitchen.

We are all sitting around the dinner table, eating this meal that my little chef has prepared for us and, after a couple of bites, I notice that it has a sweet taste to it so I casually ask, “What did you season this with?”

“Nothing.” She tells me, knowing that she isn’t supposed to be putting extra seasonings in our food without my assistance.

“Yes you did. It has a sweet taste to it. Chicken Alfredo isn’t supposed to taste sweet.” I explain as I catch a whiff of something familiar. I lift a spoon-full up to my bloodhound nose **sniff-sniff** Yep! I now know exactly what the ‘extra’ ingredient is and so I ask her again what she seasoned it with.

“I only used pepper” she tells me.

Looking at the little brown specks in the meal I tell her, “This isn’t pepper. I don’t see any pepper in here. Go get the pepper that you used and show it to me.”

She walks over to the stove and brings back our pepper grinder. I open it to see if someone accidentally put something besides pepper in there but it was empty. I show her that it’s empty and I twist it a little to see what – if anything – comes out. Sure enough, a couple of pepper crumbs fall into my hand. I show them to her, letting her see that nothing like that is present in the chicken.

She then tells me that she used a little season salt.

“Are you sure it was season salt? It doesn’t taste like season salt, it tastes sweet. Go get everything that you used and show me.”

She goes back to the cabinet and brings me the season salt. She will not admit that she may have messed up and put something else – something that she thought was season salt but it really wasn’t – into the meal.

I have been discussing these types of ‘fibs’ with her since she was old enough to talk. I can not tell you how many times, throughout her eleven short years, she has gotten herself into trouble by telling a lie that wasn’t even necessary.

Lies are not good – no matter the reason behind them. I can.not.stand. a liar! (That’s one of my ‘hot’ buttons) And the ones this child tells are just plain stupid.

I’m not fussing at her. I’m not even mad. I know that she messed up. I know that it was an accident. I just want her to admit it.

I explain all of these things to her as I walk over to the spice cabinet and pull out the one that I know she used, I show her the container and I tell/ask her directly, “Isn’t this the one you used?”

“Yes ma’am”


“Okay, why didn’t you just say that or admit it when I first asked? We are all human. We all make mistakes from time to time. It’s okay to make mistakes but you will never learn from your mistakes if you won’t even admit to making them.” I explain to her, for the umpteenth time, and I sit back down at the table and we finish our Chicken Fettuccini Cinnamon Alfredo.


1 comment:

  1. LOL!:)

    As you already know...this is one of my favorites!:)


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