16 January 2011

My Daughter's Experiment in "Pretty Food"

My older daughter loves to cook, even though she's only 5 years old.  Maybe she gets it from Mommy, or maybe she has a scientist's mind.  If her "recipe" is something I feel she can genuinely learn from or I feel comfortable in her making it, I tend to allow her to cook under my direct supervision.

A couple of days ago, she decided she needed to make "Pretty Food".  Well, this intrigued me and smacked of life lesson opportunity so I allowed it.

She took bread, cut it into circles, and sprinkled it with pink sugar.  She put this concoction in a pink bowl and was very excited.  She said "It has to taste good, Mommy!  It's so beautiful!"  Mommy that I am, Nutritionist and Chef that I dream to be, I smiled, knowing what would come next. 

She took a bite, smiling at me with pride and anticipation as her teeth sank in.  Until she tasted her food.  "Ehhhh!" (her version of Yuck).  I could read her thoughts on her face.  Puzzlement, repulsion, and then, realization.

I explained to her, "Anielka (it's not her name, it just means "Angel" and I use it as an endearment), just because something is pretty, doesn't mean it tastes good, or is good for you.  The same goes for people."

She smiled at me and nodded her head.  "Ok, Mama.  Can you help me make something else?"

She has been eating everything I feed her without complaint of appearance ever since.

In the back of my mind, I recalled my mother feeding me baby spinach leaves on sandwiches, beets, and a myriad of soups.  And my young self saying "No, it doesn't look good."  Ahh, how much easier it would have been for my mother if I had done this same experiment.


Anonymous said...

The Professor once made me a breakfast milk shake. It consisted of chunks of peanut butter dropped in milk with oreos in it and a pop tart. I refused to drink it. Told him too. And he did. And he liked it. It must be a boy thing LOL

Polish Mama on the Prairie said...

Aww, that's so cute! I remember she once wanted Orange Juice (I think she was about 2) so she took an orange and stuck a straw in it and tried to drink it. I showed her how to make fresh orange juice and she was so thrilled! Kids are so cute, and there are constantly life lessons for them as well as for us with their crazy ideas.

Anonymous said...

I wish my mom had done things like that with me. Only my dad would let us "cook" with him (he was much better cook that my mom, and he enjoyed cooking, my mom did not).
Cooking with my dad we would usually end up with salt instead of sugar in the meal, or powder sugar instead of flour ;-) That was a fun time, but he had never attached any life philosophy to that...
I think I'll keep your story for further use with my daughter.
Love reading your blog!!!
hugs from my corner.

Polish Mama on the Prairie said...

Thank you, momphotographer. I hope it inspires moms and dads to use little moments like this to teach their kids. I know I don't always, either, so stories like this also remind me to.
I think the biggest and most wonderful thing my parents could ever do for me was even as a child, they valued my opinion on subjects (politics, religion, nature, eating, exercising, cooking, society, etc.). They would talk to me and help guide me, rather than ignored or forced me, to understand another perspective on topics. If my opinion was not based on fact, they would tell me so and say to use facts. I grew up having a lot of very intellectual conversations with my parents, sometimes for hours, and we still enjoy doing so together. I want the same for my kids. Bc when I think about my parents and fond memories, it's these conversations which I think of.