Posted by: mommyinmotion | September 10, 2009

Kid’s in the Kitchen

I was the second of six children. My mother was a stay at home mom who always tried her best to make enough time for all of us. One of the things she did was follow a plan called once a month cooking. She would do one massive grocery trip, and then spend one day a month putting together casseroles to freeze so that dinner each night was easy. Just pull one out, heat, and go!

This was a great plan for her, and worked well to make sure that, no matter how busy life got, there was a hot dinner every night. The only down fall, though, was that I never learned to cook.

I got married when I was 18 and didn’t know how to cook anything. At all. It was pretty pitiful! We relied heavily on convenience foods that first year or two, while I made attempts to follow recipes and come up with something edible. While I love my mother, and understand why she made the decision to do meals the way she did, I decided to take a different route with my own kids.

I think it’s a disservice to children to have the kitchen be foreign to them. For practical and health reasons, I think everyone should know how to cook. So I make an effort, as often as possible, to include my kids in meal preparation. They are four and six, and they are able to mix, pour, measure, stir, and (with supervision) chop with a plastic knife.

Sure, it slows me down a lot. And some nights I just don’t have the patience to let them help out. But most days they get to help with at least one meal. I’ve discovered an extra benefit that I didn’t expect. I knew that letting them help would teach them to cook on their own (which will help when they are on their own). I knew that letting them help would expose them to healthy foods and recipes (which will benefit them their entire lives) .

What I didn’t know was how much the three of us would enjoy it. I wasn’t expecting it to be such a bonding experience, but it really is. Lately the kids have been experimenting with their own recipes, and it’s been a lot of fun. It’s simple stuff, but they really love it.

Last night’s “recipe”- Strawberry Banana Milk (after dinner snack)

-1 cup skim milk
-1 cup strawberries (fresh)
-1 medium banana

Cut up the banana and strawberries. Put in blender with milk. Blend until smooth. Enjoy!

Simple enough, but they LOVED it! It made enough for them to each have a glass, and gave them 2 servings of fruit before bed to boot! Who says cooking can’t be fun?


  1. This is so cute! I hope my little guy likes to help in the kitchen, as of now he enjoys watching me cook, so maybe that’s a good start lol!

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