I love to cook. I really get excited to print out a new recipe, gather the ingredients, pump up the jams, and cook away in the kitchen. What I can't stand is people whining at me for dinner, asking me a million times what dinner is, and then telling me (by facial expression or vocally) that they don't approve. I'm sorry, when did you walk into a restaurant and pay the chef to cook you what you want? If I could just cook in peace and serve grateful, non-picky eaters, that would be nice. Lately I've been making some new lowish carb recipes. These Coconut Curry Chicken Meatballs over zoodles were delish. We had Thai Beef Stirfry (minus the rice, added lettuce wraps) last night, and tomorrow is Key Lime Grilled Chicken with Cilantro Lime Cauliflower Rice. I can get behind healthy eating when the meals are flavorful and exciting. If you make me eat baked chicken and broccoli everyday, I will.not.survive.
Sometimes I sic the little kids on their big siblings. If I'm too tired or lazy to get up, I suggest an older kid for the job. Declan wants a cup of milk? Why don't you ask Eamon to do that for ya? It's time for the littles to go to bed? I ask them to pick an older sibling for bedtime and a story that night. The big kids are actually really sweet to the babies and toddlers, it's their saving grace some days ;)
I have to remind myself that I can't get mad at the sixth person who yells MOM! at me, because even though I'm being bombarded by lots of people's needs, this was the first time this particular little person called me, and I should respond sweetly. It's not their fault they have to split my attention seven ways.
We need to spread the chores around a bit more. I feel we lean too heavily on the two oldest kids, because the middle kids are always going to be younger than them and seem less able. But they're not! The older ones were doing things at their age. Also, apparently my big boys can assemble cabinets like mini-men but they don't know how to load a dishwasher properly. That's on me. I need to properly show them how to do the chores I want/need them to do and not expect that they know how.
I kinda love the discipline of Lent. Of course, we're not even a full week in, so ask me how I feel after a month! We give up sweets at home, and it just seems to make meals so much easier and kids' attitudes more pleasant. When I pull out strawberries after dinner, it's like I am handing out gold coins the kids get so excited for some "nature's candy". Last night for the kids dinner, I made them burgers and gave them carrots, cucumbers, and lettuce on the side. Nobody even asked where the chips were! Phil and I always say that we should just eat like this all year, but then Easter comes and we're back into the too-much-sweets time again. I love treating my kids with little goodies, they are good doobies who are very helpful and do well in school and in society. I just need to find non-food ways to spoil them.
Every day I get tons of ads in my email. I have decided that lent is the perfect chance to take the time to clean this up. So when I get an ad from a company that I don't care about (which is like 99% of them) I actually click to unsubscribe from their mailing list. It's not that hard, and I don't know why it's taken me so long to make myself do this. I'm hoping by Easter my inbox is only full of love notes instead of solicitations. Now to find someone who will write me love notes...
Finally, I need this reminder when the morning chaos of trying to get everyone in my car before 6:45 gets a little too loud: