My 6th grade son is currently taking a Foods and Nutrition class at school, and now thinks he is the next Bobby Flay. The only things they've learned how to make so far are chocolate chip cookies and orange smoothies, but he is certain he is ready to make a pan seared trout with mushroom risotto. Other than the added chaos and mess in the kitchen, his culinary interest has been a fabulous development for me, as he is desperate to make dinner as often as possible. I detest making dinner, so I gleefully say “Go for it, dude!” The added amount of cleanup and dishes in the kitchen is worth it for me not to have to make another meal that everyone complains about.
He has been crafting weekly menus and looking up new recipes to try. He has started a Pinterest account and pins meal ideas. He watches the Food Network more than he plays Minecraft. He talks about knife cuts and flavor palettes.
Last night he made some sort of barbeque beef biscuit concoction for dinner. I thought it was very tasty, unfortunately, not all in the family felt that way. Apparently he was feeling that his efforts were unappreciated. The following statements comprised the repeating soundtrack to our evening:
“Nobody in this family understands how much work it is to feed everyone!”
“Why are these kids so picky?”
“It is impossible to please everyone in this family.”
“No one appreciates how hard I worked on this meal.”
To his sister, “I don’t care that you don’t like bbq, this is what we’re having.”
“There are children in this world that are starving!”
To his brother, “You will eat this because I made it. I am not a short order cook.”
To both of his siblings, “Stop complaining and eat it!’
Mumbling, “Is it too much to say ‘thank you’?”
After dinner I asked him to help me with the dishes because it was his turn.
“WHAT?!? I MADE dinner! Now I have to clean up TOO?”
Um…. yep. That’s how it works.
As he was drying dishes next to me at the sink he confided in me that I should probably teach the younger two some gratitude. “Mom. You have no idea how frustrating it is to do so much and then not even get a THANK YOU.”
I suppressed a laugh and a lecture and just nodded. Inside, I was reveling in the fact that he must pay more attention to me than I thought because he was able to spout off the same things that I say during most meals.
That’s all the thanks I need.