Thursday, April 15, 2010

Dinner Disputes

When Chris and I were newlyweds, dinnertime was something we savored. At dinner, we would unwind from our day, catch up on each other's lives and relish homemade cuisines. Boy have dinners changed! Almost ten years and four kids later, dinnertime has transformed from serene to stressful.

Tonight was a fight. I made pesto chicken. I knew before the boys hit the table that pesto chicken was going to be a hard sell. It's chicken that's not in nugget form and smothered in a green, grass like substance. Of course I was right, the boys were beside themselves. How could I do this to chicken? I couldn't possibly expect them to eat this, right?

You see, the boys have two beefs with dinner. First, they detest our family's "one dinner fits all" policy. We are an equal opportunity dining family: the same dinner is provided to each member of the family regardless of age, dietary preferences and propensity to protest. This policy has come under fire by the under seven constituency in our house. To their dismay, the matriarch of the family insists the "one family, one dish" policy will remain. This means dinner will oftentimes not include a box of macaroni and cheese or even a dollop of peanut butter!

Secondly, the boys are irked (to put it kindly) that each dinner includes a (gasp) vegetable. Of course, it's the first thing they notice on their plate. Then they express how upsetting this entire class of foods is to them. They comment on the icky colors, the squishy texture and the general unpleasantness of it all.

All this being said, the boys typically finish dinner for one reason alone: dessert. Clean plates can be redeemed for the sugary treat of their choice. It's an offer too tempting for them to refuse!

Tonight they wanted reassurance that the dessert was really good and worth all the gagging that would ensue. I pulled out the holy grail of desserts: homemade chocolate chip cookies. A hush fell over the table and the boys began eating.

I've learned you've got to watch the boys like a hawk during dinner. They'll try just about anything to bypass eating green and leafy produce. One son will "accidently" drop his vegetables on the floor and indicate how sorry he is that he won't be able to eat them. Another son will ask to go to the restroom. I'll notice his fist is clinched with a green substance oozing out the sides. Moments later I'll hear the toilet flush and he'll return with an empty hand and miraculous a plate clean of vegetables. Another son's trick of choice is to place all his vegetables on his brother's plate. That always ends really well!

Tonight we compromised. The boys promised to consume the chicken as long as they could scrape off the "yucky green stuff." Dinner was devoured (with a limited number of vegetable avoiding shenanigans) and desserts were then distributed.

Fortunately, tomorrow is pizza night. I'm anticipating no complaints!

No comments:

Post a Comment