This weekend I was honored to be ask to be on a panel of local, healthy blogging experts at the Whole Foods Health Fair.
I had a wonderful time catching up with Lauren (who writes for Food Babe), Lori and Diana. We could have talked for several hours, it happens when you get a group of us together, but I had some shopping to do!
Being toddler-less, I took my time perusing the aisles, making for one relaxing shopping expedition.
Sunday– Braised Short Ribs with Baked Potatoes and Wilted Kale
Monday– Kale & Quinoa Pilaf with Roasted Salmon
Tuesday– Black Bean Burgers & Curly Sweet Potato Fries
Wednesday– Homemade Spaghetti over Spaghetti Squash
Thursday– Homemade Vegetable Soup & Grilled Cheese
Friday– Homemade Veggie Pizza
I thought the meal was ‘pretty good,’ and David loved it.
David worked Sunday and I had a long list of tasks to accomplish, including food prep for the week.
My true self is incredibly focused on time management and efficiency. I have an ever-evolving list of things to get done scrolling through my head and have gotten pretty darn good at managing my days to maximize productivity. It’s a trait of which I’m rather proud.
However, a beautiful thing about motherhood is that it challenges you daily because it isn’t all about you anymore. I promise I have a point…
Sunday morning I faced a decision. I could put Hailey in another room with Mickey and her dollhouse and whiz through food prep to knock it out, or I could embrace these fleeting moments and have Hailey help me.
This meant embracing a decent-sized mess, a longer amount of time to prep food for the week and the need to have to slow down, explain and be patient. With a deep breath for my sanity, I decided to go for it.
Turns out… It was awesome.
She was so interested in everything.
I loved how she counted the black beans as I explained how this ‘magical’ pressure cooker would make the beans bigger, softer and edible.
I loved how with each item we prepped she asked to try it by holding it to her mouth and asking ‘eat, mommy?’
I loved watching her little mind soak up what each food was called and seeing the focus she had on performing her given task.
I loved how she grabbed on to my arm with both hands in anticipation of the food processor’s blaring motor, then would jump and giggle when I turned it on.
I simply loved spending this time with her and watching her engage with the things I’ve fallen in love with- healthy food, cooking and the kitchen. 2 years old is an incredible age.
I’m a believer that early exposure to healthy foods and cooking is beneficial to kids. As we, as a society, spend more time watching cooking shows on TV than actually cooking ourselves, our nation’s (and world’s) health is suffering.
I want Hailey to be comfortable with real foods and how to prepare them. I want her to know it isn’t intimidating or difficult. I want her to enjoy the process. And if she chooses to not be interested in cooking later on, that’s fine with me. She will at least know what kale is and we’ll both have the memories of hours spent together in the kitchen, which are memories I know I will cherish forever.
Sure, everything took twice as long and the kitchen looked like a warzone, but in the end, prepping food for the week still was accomplished.
Washed & Dried Kale, LaraBalls, Hydrated Black Beans, Fresh Whole Wheat Bread
Did you help in the kitchen growing up?
Do you cook with your kids?
My mom is a great cook and made delicious dinners most nights when I was growing up. I wish I would have gone in there with her more because I would have learned a lot. I usually stuck to setting the table or clearing it afterwards. My loss! Trying to play catch up now