Mealtimes have increasingly become a task for several reasons. The unavailability of a wide range of foodstuff/groceries, funds and time, attempt to offer some explanation for this. Coupled with the fact that I have a unique team of picky eaters. Thankfully, they’ve gotten better over the years but there is so much more room for improvement. I’m working on that.
Today, I literally agonized over what to make for lunch. I went through my ‘menu arsenal’ and still fell short. My friend made a couple of interesting suggestions and my husband pitched in. He thought this lock-down was an opportunity to introduce certain foods that our kids would not ordinarily eat. We had repeatedly had to explain why a stay-at-home, no-visiting, no-friends-over rule, was necessary in light of the Coronavirus pandemic. Despite allowing them more TV time than usual, they had played chess, monopoly, scrabble, snake & ladders, and many other novel inventions of their own yet they wanted something more. My husband believed that this would make them more open to trying new things; since they sought for some excitement cum adventure.
We came up with a not-too-long list of foods that our own parents gave us growing up. Heck! The last time I ate some of the foods on that list was when I was a teenager, twenty-something years ago!
We decided to make rice and beans porridge (with palm oil, crayfish and all the other intricate ingredients that make for a local delicacy).
I got right to work. Put my heart into it.
It took about two hours to prepare.
I served my kids and watched for their reactions.
Of course, they had a couple of questions about the food – the look, the blend, the combination, the smell. I answered them all.
Then they ate it all up. Everyone finished their serving. My youngest son even had a second helping. Then he came and stood right in front of me, with a somewhat stern look and said: “Mummy, why are your foods always so tasty?” I smirked and replied: “because I put a lot of love into it”. He smiled and went back to his food. I took that as a compliment.
Darn! It felt good! My face almost became stiff from my wide smile.
That was not the first time he was giving me a compliment but that one stood out for me.
My husband looked at me and said: “See?! And to think that you were afraid of giving them something new”. I smiled even more.
Beautiful story Bolu and even more beautifully written.