Friday, June 25, 2010

Sandwhiches...Again? back to parenting lessons for a minute...or two...or fifty-seven! It seems that as a parent you're constantly involved in lessons. You're either teaching or lesson, or sometimes learning one of your own. I'd like to talk today about sandwhiches. Ham and cheese, PB&J, Turkey and swiss, whatever you like best...maybe that's peanut butter and banana?

Anyway, no matter which one we're talking about, sandwhiches are a versatile meal to have when you have children. Especially ones under the age of 5 or those that are entering their teen years who act like garbage disposals because they are starting to consume so much food that you can feel at time as if they're eating you out of house and home. And sometimes sandwhiches can be used to teach your children a lesson...

I mentioned briefly in the infamous “door post” the other day that another little lesson we’re working on with our children right now is eating nothing but sandwiches. I’ll explain, or try to, why we’re doing this…our children have been taught (by us) that eating out is ok, a good thing and a regular everyday occurrence. When in reality, it shouldn’t be. Yes, I can admit that there are times when it’s easier to eat out than to eat at home. When there’s only one person in the house for instance. Or if you’ve got soccer practice at a time when it’s too early to eat before practice and getting close to bedtime when practice is done, so stopping at Sonic on the way home is just logical. It’s also a good reward – you made straight A’s? Then you get to pick where we eat out tonight to celebrate.

But I don’t think that we should have started the pattern of eating out because it was easier on us as parents. And that’s just what we did. I own up to my part in this, I truly do. I can also admit to my kids having a crappy attitude about eating at home now because they EXPECT to be taken out to eat. They don’t say thank you to us for providing the meal (although they typically do when we cook at home). Instead, as they sit there eating the $40 in pizza that we just paid for (with no thanks) they ask if we can stop and get snow cones on the way home from dinner.

I’m sorry, what did you just say? Oh no, no, no…that’s NOT how it’s going to be.

So we decided that we would eat at home until they could learn to appreciate that it takes money (which means going to work and earning money) to feed them and that they should be more appreciative. So we’ve taken away eating out. Not until any set time in the future, but just for now. I mean, this was probably a change that was coming anyway with a new baby joining the family…so we’ve just started it a little early.

And since I am staying off of my feet, that means that we’re not eating home-cooked meals, we’re eating a lot of sandwiches. I don’t feel good enough to cook, and Brent’s working a lot of hours right now, so he’s too tired to cook as well. Enter in the sandwich. The most versatile of foods that there is…with a few variations in meat, cheese and other fillings, there are endless options out there. **Side note – our sandwiches don’t really look as good as the one pictured…I’m just saying!

We started this on Tuesday. It’s now Friday. And I’ve rediscovered a love for PB&J with chips. Yummy, yummy…it’s what I’ve had for either lunch or dinner for the past few days. The first evening that we did this, both Brent and I talked the “big talk” about how much we love sandwiches and can eat them every single day no problem. Jenna, being the 8-year-old kiss-up that she is claimed to love sandwiches too…Tanner? Let’s just say that he’s 12 and leave it at that. If you have a 12-year-old or can remember what it was like when you were 12, you’ll probably get a good idea of what his reaction was.

Brent got off of work early today, which is good news as we’re hosting our own baby shower at our house tomorrow and with me on partial bedrest, I can’t do a lot of the cleaning that needs to be done. He called to tell me to not eat lunch, that we’d grab something when I got home…and I reminded him about our love for sandwiches and the lesson that we’re trying to teach our children. This is what I heard on the other end of the line…

…cricket, cricket…

Yeah. But he agreed to follow the pact…even if it was grudgingly. You see, sometimes when teaching your kids a lesson, you get a lesson in return. Should our lesson be “think things through before you speak?” Maybe. I’m really ok with the sandwich pact, but I can tell that Brent’s getting tired of them…but I’m proud of him for sticking to it and following through with the lesson. Because as an extra bonus that neither one of us thought of, we’ve saved a TON of money this week on not eating out! And with a baby on the way, you KNOW that’s a good thing! I think that we’ll actually cook something tonight though, just to have a break in the whole sandwich plan…

Don’t worry about Brent too much…I did give him some extra motivation today. On Sunday night, all of our guests for the weekend will be gone and both kids will be with their other parents…Johnny Carino’s, here we come!

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