Wednesday, 4 August 2010

What has felt relentless lately?

On a daily basis, I have the '5 a day' ringing in my ears, and if my kids don't get their five I feel horribly guilty. Although I have found this guilt easing the more of a seasoned mother I become. If I am truthful mealtimes having been getting a little slack of late. It has been known that malt loaf is used as a substitute for fruit (it has raisins in it), bread as a substitute for mashed potato, and chocolate as a substitute for cereal.

Trying to think of new and exciting vegetables for my little darlings, other than the trusted carrots, broccoli and frozen peas, is hard work. Trying to think of new and exciting dishes other than pasta, sausage and mash, and something that involves chicken and fish is hard work. Trying to think of new and exciting ways of washing up the countless saucepans, plates, knives, forks, spoons, cups, just to do it all over a again a few hours later, is hard work. Trying to think of new and exciting ways of scraping the aforementioned food off the floor, the chairs, the underside of the tablecloth, and the legs of the highchair is hard work...

It is dinner time and I look in the cupboard for inspiration. Betty says 'please don't give us pasta, pesto and broccoli again'. I sigh and say 'ok what would you like?' 'doughnuts' comes the reply. 'You can't have doughnuts' I say. 'But you gave us doughnuts last night' she retorts.

Strictly speaking, this is true. We were at the supermarket doing a grocery shop at around 4.30pm yesterday and I bought a carton of mini doughnuts for the journey home as I knew the girls would be whingey and hungry in the car. Every so often I would throw a couple of doughnuts their way and jokingly say 'this is your dinner kids'. However they took me at my word, and once home and presented with pasto, pesto and broccoli, Betty said 'but we've had our dinner mummy, remember?' And Dolly gave me a look that said 'What, after all those doughnuts? - you've got to be bloody joking'.


Written for Josie's writing workshop

13 comments:

Beccers said...

hahaha... I remember my best ever dinner when I was little being crisp sandwiches and the chocolate from in-between biscuits (Dad was in charge). When they get older theirs is going to be donuts, despite all the loving creations you've made over the years!

sadie said...

thank God it's not just me! I thought I was the only one on the spud/broccoli/pasta roundabout! I try to ease up on the guilt though. My thoughts are thus: The Girl gets through a lot of fruit each day, this is a good thing, a good habit, and good for her. I'll just ignore the crisps and choc she guzzles ;o)

She asks for 'noodles' most days (which can mean pastas as well as noodle doodles), so I think ok then, if that's what ye want, that's what ye shall have child. I do the odd sneaky trick too, cook carrots in with the spuds for mash, grate carrot and add to pizza bases, get her to help decorate the pizza (though why I let this happen when she was wearing sparkling white I do not know. Am an idiot!), and another favourite is cheesy 'fish'. carrot & spud mash,mixed with cheese shaped to look like a fishy, and sprinkled with grated cheese and breadcrumbs. Went a bit splatty in the oven, but turned out well. Peas were used for the eyes, broccoli for seaweed :o)

Best of all, sometimes I give myself a total break and buy either one of Annabel K's kids meals, or a http://www.littledish.co.uk/our-dishes/fresh-natural-meals.html 'little dish' pie.

Katy on 'I can Cook' on Cbeebies can give a bit of inspiration sometimes too.

Really is nice to know I'm not alone with the 'what shall I feed her now' thoughts! :o) xx

Elsie Button said...

Hi Beccers, my fave thing was crisp sandwiches too, with dairylea! (actually it still is when i am hungover). Much to my mum's exasperation. She would cook amazing home cooked food - fantastic cook - and i would often turn my nose up.

Hi Sadie, i too am glad that others lack inspiration at times. Thanks for all the tips! (ps perhaps the chocolate substitution was a slight exageration!)

Sarah (Chez Lee) said...

Brilliant! Thanks for a laugh at the end of a relentless day (here in NZ). It is always great to read I am not alone! I am so fed up of being in the kitchen today. My youngest has just started on solids and I'm back at the relentless rounds of preparing, feeding & cleaning :) Oh the joys!

Elsie Button said...

hi sarah, if we didn't joke about these things, i think we would go insane!

aarr yes the preparation of purees stage - that's a whole different ball game!

Sarah Cruickshank said...

Oh Elsie, that's so true! Thankfully Jonno NEVER tires of pasta and pesto :)

Elsie Button said...

hi sarah, ha ha, the old pesto pasta combo is a staple here too! (altho recently oldest been kicking up a fuss!)

emmylou said...

I love it - what a brilliant post! I'd never tried pesto until I was 23! Your children are so lucky to have a mum that puts so much time and effort into their meals.

I don't have children, but my sister does - a three year old and 11 month old. I'd never realised that children's meals were such a big deal. My sister regularly gets stressed over the three year old's vegetable intake. And my parents! I'm sure since they became grandparents, they've had a personality transplant! My nephews have yoghurt coated raisins which are named "sweets" (they're buggered as soon as the kids can read) and my mother looked at me like I'd offered my nephew crack when I gave him a bag of Wotsits as a treat. When I saw her looking at me with disgust, I merely replied "Mother, in the 80's Wotsits were a food group. Get a grip."
Thanks for sharing - I really enjoyed reading your blog. xx

Elsie Button said...

hi emmylou, i have to admit i have used the yoghurt coated raisins trick, but betty has wised up now. loved the wotsits being a food group in the 80s! You are right, we are too strung out these days!

nappy valley girl said...

You sound like you are doing fine -the boys have the same old meals over and over, and they won't eat any vegetable except carrot and cucumber. I try to give them lots of fruit to make up for lack of veg, but I do worry about their diet. If it was up to them, it would be hot dogs every night.

Elsie Button said...

hi nappy valley, yes kids do seem to love sausages don't they! we have fruit til its coming out of our ears in this house too.

(I shouldn't really complain cos my gannets will eat practically anything put in front of them (apart from avocado weirdly), and i sometimes wonder if they actually have taste buds?!)

Iota said...

Fruit pastilles. They're a great way of upping the 5-a-day total.

I believe that in years to come the scientists will prove that vegetables are bad for small children. Why on earth else has Mother Nature given them such an antipathy to them? Then mothers like me will be able to smile smugly and say "well, at least MINE weren't over-exposed".

Janet said...

Love it! I am totally on the broccolli/pasta/carrots wagon. Baked potatoes if we're lucky. But sometimes I think they eat mostly protein (cheese) and carb (pasta/bread) and apart from the odd banana v little else gets past their chops. I decided that rather than feel guilty every day, I should look at at the overall weekly or monthly fruit and veg consumption. It almost made me feel slightly better. Almost...