Are you suffering from MMFS?
Meal Making Fatigue Syndrome?
100 or so days in a row of making breakfast, lunch and dinner for seven people has officially taken its toll.
I have major burnout.
How did Caroline Ingalls do it?
How did she make three meals a day, every day for like…
I have reached a low (or is it high?) point in meal making fatigue and it’s only been three months.
I really do enjoy cooking, but I am kind of over it.
Actually I’m REALLY OVER IT.
So I decided to do something about it.
Now that distance learning is winding down and there are three more months to go of the kids being home, we had a meeting the other day.
They help out around the house quite a bit, but it’s time for them to contribute in the kitchen and start making some meals.
This will give me a break from cooking every single meal, and it will help them develop more proficiency and independence in the kitchen. Especially the boys.
The three girls have a natural interest in cooking. The boys? Not so much. They are happy to let the girls do all the work.
I’m not really okay with that.
At first I was going to have the girls be in charge of one meal a day and the boys responsible for another, but I didn’t want the two clueless ones to be together.
Since Number 3 and Number 4 are starting swim practice at 5:30 a.m. in less than two weeks, I put the three youngest on breakfast duty, and Number 3 and 4 will be responsible for lunch.
The girls will help teach the boys their way around the kitchen.
Everyone was fairly enthusiastic about this arrangement.
I know the enthusiasm will dwindle in a couple days when the novelty wears off, but the key there is for me to just stay consistent with my expectations.
Numbers 5, 6 and 7 got right to work this morning.
They decided to make scrambled eggs, pancakes, and smoothies which is a typical breakfast that I’d make.
Did everything go smoothly?
There were a couple tears. There was a little frustration.
The food was not cooked perfectly.
The definitely needed guidance.
I didn’t just throw them in the kitchen and say, “Okay! Get cookin’!”
There was a lot of learning.
Sometimes when we implement changes we forget that our kids need guidance and training.
Although Number 5 and 7 are fairly experienced in the kitchen, they aren’t totally independent.
Number 6 had flipped pancakes before, but he’d never made them from start to finish.
He learned what happens when your batter is too thin.
Number 7 has stirred things on the stove, but she never actually turned a burner on before.
She learned how to do that today.
She had never actually made scrambled eggs from start to finish before, but she did today.
Number 5 learned how to operate the blender.
They are all much more knowledgeable after just one morning of making breakfast.
They realize how long it takes to get a meal on the table.
They realize how you have to time the different dishes you make.
They realize how many dirty dishes are created just from making one meal.
They worked pretty well together, and while I didn’t really save any time for myself today because they needed a decent amount of help and guidance, tomorrow they will be much more skilled.
A week from now they will require little, if any, assistance at all.
And by the time they are my age, they will all be seriously kicking my ass in the kitchen!
If MMFS is an issue for you, your kids are capable of helping you out in this department.
And by giving them this opportunity in the kitchen every day, you will be teaching them time management skills, responsibility and independence, and those are three of the biggest gifts you will ever give them.