Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Dab makes lunches!

Sophi call me "Dab." She can say "Daddy," but can't seem to put the "d" sound on the end of a word. This morning she sees me stumble into the kitchen to make seven lunches for our fantastic kids. "Dab?" she hollers out. "Yes?" I respond. "Morning, Dab." She truly is amazing, just the way she is:)

I grew up in a family where if you were served food, you ate it. Period. With a smile on your face and gratitude in your heart. (And for the record, that would still be my policy, if it were mine to make.) Christi grew up in a home where if you had different taste preferences, the head chef would make something different for you. (Which, for the record, is a very loving way to cook for your kids.) Early in our marriage, I tried to curb Christi's tendency to cater to the individual culinary appetites of our individual children. We had some "discussions" on this topic. I finally came to the realization that if someone is willing to cook 99% of the meals for me and my family, I better shut my mouth and let her cook whatever she wants for whomever she wants. (This is similar to the realization I came to that if someone is going to do my laundry, I better not complain that the shirts are hung up facing left instead of right. But I digress.) I will say that on the rare occasion that I do cook, the kids know that they will eat what is served to them. Period. With a smile on their face. Chili and pears from a can are AWESOME. Now eat!!! Actually, I've become a bit of a softie myself. For example, when I make mac and cheese, I will hold out some of the macaroni before I add the cheese. This is for Jesi, who likes it with spaghetti sauce. Anyway, you get the idea.

So when making lunches for seven kids who are used to being served foods that they personally prefer, there are a lot of things to remember. Graci won't eat chocolate. Jesi will only accept a half a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for lunch. No tuna. No turkey. No peanut butter and honey. And it has to be seedless jelly. Grape is best. Taylor prefers white bread for his sandwiches. Unless it's tuna. Then he prefers wheat. And the tuna has to made with fat free Thousand Island dressing. Not mayo. Graci prefers turkey, but will eat peanut butter and jelly. Especially if it's raspberry jam. But if you put it on wheat bread, she will only take about one bite of it. Parker wants ranch on both sides of his Turkey sandwich along with cheese, lettuce, tomato and pickles. Taylor wants turkey AND ham (two slices of turkey, one of ham) with mustard on both sides, cheese and lettuce. NO TOMATO! Graci only wants a little ranch on one side, lettuce and cheese. Taylor prefers plain old traditional potato chips. No Doritos, Fritos, Cheetos, sour cream and onion or barbecue for him. He will settle for Sun Chips if that's all there is. Graci prefers Cool Ranch Doritos, Cheetos, Regular Doritos and Sun Chips. In that order. Elli will only eat a sandwich if it the second Tuesday after the full moon. Chips are the third Friday. She does better with a granola bar and pretzels. Got all that and have an hour a day to spare? You're hired!!!



  1. I don't think there's a right or wrong there (cater to the kids or not), but there's no way they don't feel extra loved on some level because you take the time to memorize the preferneces...and then do it. Impressive!

  2. Your Grandma Green always hung shirts facing left, so when your mother, Rosemary, hung mine facing right, I didn't say a word (I would like to believe), but continued to hang mine facing left, once I had worn them, which gave me an easy way to distinguish clean shirts from those that I had already worn but were not soiled enough to go into the laundry. I wish that I could learn to adapt to all change that easily.

  3. Christi: You are a SAINT.

    No how, no way could I do what you do. Nah. That's not so much true, as it is that I would never chose to DO it.

    I would LOSE.MY.MIND. lol

  4. OK, I will say I realize some of your younger kids aren't ready to make their own lunches yet, but maybe you could have the oldest four or five make theirs alongside you while you make the others. We tended a family of six kids for two weeks while their parents went to Florida, and they all made their own lunches in the evening (except for the youngest who wasn't in school yet). Some people are probably surprised when I tell them our kids make their own lunches starting in first grade, but, hey, they get what they want, and it usually works out. I do try to have healthy things on hand and sometimes peel and slice a bunch of carrots or celery to help them out. Just a thought! :) Oh, sandwiches do get soggy, so they usually get everything packed the night before except the sandwich, and then make the sandwiches after they eat breakfast. We're still working on having them put the sandwich fixings away so I'm not cleaning up breakfast AND lunch after they leave. ;)

  5. Dude - you are extremely cool! We 'make our own lunches' at our place - and if I have my way it's right before you sit down for dinner so that I don't have to clean the kitchen twice! As for the 'eating what's on the table' - the way I look at it is if you only feed them what you made then they will develop the 'same tastes' that you have. Works in theory - but like so much in life - the theory seems to fail in the real world! ;)

    Great spin on the little things in daily life - but you hit and exact bullseye on the "if you ain't the one doin it then be thankful and deal with it"!! That's one of the great secrets to a happy marriage!!

    love you guys - aus and co.