As outlined in this post, I've put an effort into letting one kid cook with me per night. He is Dinner Man, and is responsible for measuring, cutting, mixing, cooking, setting the table, pouring drinks, etc.... including asking for help when needed. The goal is for the child to do as much as he can solo. I sometimes have to keep my hands in my pockets to keep from helping, but restraint is work it in the end when the kid is proud of his accomplishment.
In the two weeks we have followed this program, my kids have made:
Maple Corn Bread
Chicken Fried Rice
Totally Tubular Tortillas
Ham and Spinach Quiche, using this recipe and subbing 4 oz of rosemary ham for the bacon.
Maple Glazed Chicken (Six O'Clock Scramble)
Bacon-Wrapped Chicken (Six O'Clock Scramble)
We even tried Breakfast Man, who made French Toast Casserole and Pumpkin Pancakes.
We're eating as well as ever, and the sanity level is (mostly) increasing. I love spending one-on-one time with my kids. They are learning valuable skills in prepping, cooking, and decision-making plus knife skills, how to turn on the stove, how to open a wine or beer bottle, and more. Yes, my kids are seven- even I wouldn't teach a two year old how to turn on the stove- your mileage may vary and you must adapt to your situation/family. But it really is more fun when you do the repetitive tasks with the kids, and they learn skills that are guaranteed to last a lifetime.
It can be hard to make this happen day in and day out. My work schedule has been busier than usual this summer. Sometimes the kid just didn't want to cooperate... he's too hungry/crabby/tired/argumentative from his day at camp. We're also not sure how this will transisition to the school year, when I still have a busy work life, Mr. Unwired is also working full-time, the kids have homework and afterschool activities, etc. Breakfast Man will be a way to catch up when we can't make dinner together, so we have a fall back plan already in place. Stay tuned to see how I feel about this in another month!