9 Year Old Makes Dinner!
A real full meal deal!!
Yesterday was a day in which there was nothing on the calendar, rain was all around us and the Beavers were playing on TV. Because I knew this schedule a few days ago, I asked my daughter if she would like to cook a full dinner, from the main course, side dish, to the blissful dessert. All smiles, my 9 year old was popcorn in the pan happy to do this. As I have posted before, I found a few books from which to choose from that would help her make her first full meal a total success.
So in letting her get the full experience I had her write down the menu, the ingredients and the possible utensils she might need that we didn’t already have in my kitchen. The next day (yesterday) all the kiddos and I went to the grocery store. I gave my daughter the list, we followed, and she was able to push the cart as well as fill it with the items she needed to make our dinner. Once every item was placed in the cart I gave her the money to pay the clerk.
I was really impressed with her. I told her, just like I do every time I enter the store, she needed to shop with one goal in mind… get all the items you can at either a discounted rate or the least expensive of all available. She had her first lesson when she went up to the fish market section. She wanted one type of fish for her main course. Then she looked at price per pound. Her elated face changed dramatically. Her jaw dropped, her nose pinched up, and a scowl was threatening to take over! She looked at me for advice. I was at a loss as to what to do as well. This has happened to me too many times to count. You just improvise! My dilemma was how to help my daughter.
I wanted to give her a real life lesson. I wanted her to use common sense in this situation. But you should have seen her beautiful brown eyes pleading with me for help. She knew at that very moment her meal might be a bust. I took the high road in this instance and let her figure it out. I remember when there were times just like this with my mother. Somehow she just knew if I did some thing on my own I would be the better for it later in life… Yes, at first maybe my daughter would think I was being cruel, but at the end of the day she would be so proud of herself for doing it ALL by herself! It is a win win situation. I let her make decisions and let her grow a little. She makes the decision, either good or bad, that lets her know she was in control and learns from it.
God was with both us yesterday. As my daughter moved up to the fish counter she was sensible enough to tell the clerk behind the counter what she was doing, what she needed, and able to ask for help. The clerk was awesome! So here is a shout out to Market of Choice! Thank you for being so kind to my daughter and leading her in the right direction. The clerk told her that her recipe called for a particular type of fish, but gave her another more budget friendly choice that would work out just fine. My daughter was so grateful for the expertise and gentle hand of the clerk. (Me, too!!) Now, if she ever gets into this predicament, or one like it, she will know how to deal with it. Awesome life lesson!!
So off she went, pushing her cart, with a smile ear to ear. One could say, for her, life was good. She completed her shopping, went to purchase her lot, money in hand. I was so proud of her. She was just amazing from start to finish. She was able to get the job done! And it was fun.
Then when we get home… Nearly noon… She asks me if we can start dinner. She was so excited! I take a second look at her menu for the evening. I tell her that we can break up the recipes. A little shadow began to take over her face. Not too swift, I say to myself! Yes! I get it. There is no WE here!! She was telling me without saying a word that this was her gig! So I rephrase it…. “You can break it up… Do a little now and the rest just before dinner time”. Look what I just did! I turned a frown upside down in 5 seconds flat!! Life is good again.
She ran straight to the cookbook and found what she could make right away. All I had to do was get the ingredients she could not reach. I also set up the cookbook for easy reading.
I need to share this idea! Another great share by MB Things I Know Facebook page. You really need to go there and like her to receive the best ideas! You can find her at https://www.facebook.com/mbthingsiknow. Anyway… The idea is this:
Posted on MB Things I Know Facebook Wall – March 8, 2013
None of our cabinets have knobs so I use the handle of our above the stove top microwave to hang our unique, but oh so useful contraption on. It works perfectly for our daughter as it is at just the right height for her.
She read the step by step instructions and made the recipe all by herself… Or as much as she could make ahead of time. She wanted to make the whole menu after completing that portion, but unfortunately there wouldn’t have been anyone to eat it at such an early hour. The family had just finished lunch not much before this time…
FINALLY! It was time for her to be in the kitchen alone (not totally)! She asked for the ingredients that she could not reach, followed all the directions and prepared what was going to be a scrumptious meal. I wish you could have been there. It was so amazing!! The only area where she needed assistance was putting things in the oven. She is not that tall and so it was a little cumbersome putting items in and taking items out. I had to remind her many times to watch her legs…not get too close… go to the side.
After receiving so many compliments (seriously, her meal was very good!) she told her brother that she wants to go to Le Cordon Bleu in Paris when she grows up, just like Julia Child! That I would love to see. I do believe she would make her mark there. Not at all biased!
So what meal did she prepare? The yummy, scrumptious & pretty darn healthy meal was:
- Green Salad (Ice Berg Lettuce with Carrots and Red Cabbage)
- Fish in Foil Packets (Sole, Lemons, Zucchini and Cherry Tomatoes)
- Boiled Artichokes
- Shortcakes (biscuits, Strawberries, Peaches and Whipped Cream)
You might be saying… Yeah, right! A nine year old fixing this meal pretty much on her own? GIVE ME A BREAK! No, really! The recipes are out of an old Good Housekeeping children’s cookbook. Each recipe has step by step instructions and she followed them to a T! The only item not in the book was the boiled artichokes. She read that in Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking. I will post each of these recipes tomorrow so that your child can make them for you. You will see how easy, fun and delicious they all are. Then you can say I’m sorry to me later! You will really feel bad for your horrible thoughts, I promise!
See you tomorrow with all the details. Until then,
Have fun, families!! Remember to always Make the Most of Every Moment!