Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Kitchen Helpers

If you’re like me, meal prep is a crazy/busy time when the kids are cranky(hungry), I’m famished(cranky) and all I want is to get a healthy meal on the table. My girls LOVE to “help.” But in my haste, I often shoo them away. Have you been there, too?

I’ve learned, therefore, the best time to invite my girls into the kitchen is not around meal times but - instead - when we’re relaxed. And through our times in the kitchen together I have also learned, cooking with kids has a lot of advantages and disadvantages.

Advantages:
1. Kids learn about nutrition, math, science, reading, and patience.
2. Cooking teaches kids to follow directions and enhances their imaginations.
3. Great conversations happen during cooking together.
4. There’s something for every child to do…sorting, measuring, pouring, cutting, mixing, etc.

Disadvantages:
1. It won’t be neat.
2. It won’t look pretty.
3. It may not taste great.

BUT the benefits your kids will experience from spending time with you in the kitchen will definitely trump the mess they’ll make. So, next time, think twice before shooing them out of the kitchen!

Got any easy, kid-friendly recipes you can share with us???

~Sharina

6 comments:

  1. Yes, Sharina. I've been there!!! LOL

    Now that my kids are older, I am trying to get them into the kitchen more often. They're past the "eager to help" phase, but I want to get them comfortable with cooking because one day...before I know it...they'll be gone and they'll NEED to know this stuff! Yikes!

    ~Karen

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  2. It is definitely hard to have the kids in the kitchen when I'm trying to get dinner on the table. However....I do like to put them to work with setting the table and other things their little hands can help with while I'm cooking! :)
    I also encourage them to make their own sandwiches at lunch time or little desserts at snack time. They can easily cut up a banana with a plastic fork and squirt some chocolate syrup on it for dessert OR cut a shape into bread and make a fun shaped sandwich. It is hard to include them sometimes in the kitchen, but I know it's also a great bonding time and I love to spend time with them! :)) It's all about the timing.....
    I think one day they'll look back at those little moments and remember the fun time spent together in the kitchen with Mom. :) - Betsy

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  3. Yes Betsy...timing is important! Last night we had friends over for dinner and the girls wanted to help me make the corn muffins. It turned out like rocks!! Oh well, we still ate them and laughed about it! Moments in the kitchen with mom. At least we didn't burn anything.

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  4. ha ha ha.....see....memories! LOL :D

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  5. Awww, you could have called them "paper weights" and sent them home as party favors! *grin*

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  6. Cooking with your kids is an investment that will reap tremendous benefits. Yes an investment.
    I have cooked with my kids since their chubby little hands could hold a spoon and now those same hands cook for me.
    Sometimes it is easier to do everything by ourselves as it will be faster, neater perhaps even tastier. Yet God showed me early on with my kiddos this is a generation of do it for me. A generation content to press a button, flick a switch and throw something in the microwave rather than self entertain, get their hands dirty, sweat, labor for anything, and truly cook for themselves generation.
    Take the time and start young. It is an investment that is definitely worth it.

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