During the school year, most kids have a fairly stable meal schedule. They eat an early breakfast, have lunch at school, have an afternoon snack when they get home followed by an evening dinner. Now that they are home all day it’s important to keep the house stocked with food since this is where they will have most of their meals. It seems fairly simple, right? Well if you have boys, you know that keeping food in the house is far from simple.
When the school year ended I silently felt a sense of relief, even though I wasn’t the one who had to go every day. As a stay at home mom, I looked forward to days of relaxing and not asking about homework or worrying about whether or not there was food for breakfast and clean laundry for the next day. Well, now that I spend the entire day with my four year old daughter and twelve and thirteen year old sons, I have to worry about keeping them fed. It’s not that I don’t enjoy cooking for them, because I do. One of the most reassuring things about being a stay at home mom is the fact that I am the only one who provides all of my kids’ nourishment. If they get sick or develop some sort of allergy, I can usually figure out where it came from. This is especially true when children are younger.
I love to make a trip to the grocery store and pick out food for my four year old. I love watching her face as she takes everything out of the bags with such eagerness and curiosity as I describe what everything is and how we are going to use it to prepare a meal. She loves helping in the kitchen.
I can remember a time when my boys were the same way. They used to get so happy when I brought them home a treat from the store, which was usually something they had seen in a T.V. commercial. At some point over the years, going to buy food started to become somewhat of a chore. I don’t think it’s due to the fact that the novelty has worn off. I mean, I've been a mom for nearly fourteen years so I doubt that the novelty of nourishing my family would have lasted this long if I had indeed considered cooking a novelty. I honestly think that cooking feels like more of a chore because my boys just each so much. I have to buy in bulk if I want anything to last more than a few days. I hate resorting to junk food, but I’ll admit, I get weak and lazy sometimes and buy them a bag of chips or a pack of cookies, and they usually don’t last long.
My evenings of homework and laundry have been replaced by days of making sure everyone has breakfast and the mess has been cleaned up. Then I go to the store and buy more food. By then, everyone is asking about lunch. Soon after that, I start thinking about dinner and after it has been made the mess has to be cleaned up. At least that’s how most days seem to go.
For some reason I don’t remember previous summers revolving around food so much. Suddenly, laundry doesn't sound so bad and I sort of miss homework a little bit. I guess I should enjoy it while I can and count my blessings, since that’s what they are after all. Whether it’s cooking, cleaning, homework, or laundry, it’s all part of taking care of my family which is one of the greatest blessings of all.