Although it's a fair amount of work each year (and it would likely cost less money to just buy the produce at the store:), planting a garden has been a really rewarding experience for our family over the years. The kids LOVE the fresh vegetables each summer and fall. And it teaches good lessons about the value of work and the law of the harvest. They all enjoy being a part of the planning process, deciding what will be planted. Plus, we keep it small enough that they're not weeding all summer long:)
As a side note, the reason we were so rushed that day was because we had been invited to a cookout at the home of an old friend of mine. As I mentioned above, Christi was under the weather. So I took all the kids to the cookout by myself. It went unbelievably well! Without any prompting from me, the older kids really took it upon themselves to help me out since mom wasn't there. They were so polite, so helpful with their younger siblings, and so good to volunteer help with clean up after the meal was done. I was a proud papa!