Cooking for Love…and Positive Reinforcement

28 Jun

My son cooked with me a bit more extensive than normal a few weeks ago.  That afternoon, I got a card.  The cover read, “Dear: The Best Mom (in a SuperMom logo) ever!”  Inside: “I Love Mom (heart with an arrow).  Dear Mom, I am so very glad I have you as a mom.  I like when we cook together.  You are truly the best mother a child could have!”  If that isn’t a perfect example of positive reinforcement, I don’t know what is!  Well, I’m a big believer in keeping your kids home if you can during the summer (vs. summer school).  I understand it’s not always possible, but in our situation, it works and I love it.  And not just because I don’t have to wake up early.  I promised him we’d cook often this summer.  After reading this post on my Martha Stewart sister’s blog, I made good on my promise and I decided that I would actually let them cook the ENTIRE meal.  Not just pour here, stir there.  So…mushroom burgers by a 4, 7 and 8 year old…with a little help from the one year old.

My son…you know, with the positive reinforcement…he was in charge of the burger part.  He absolutely loved getting his hands into the raw meat.  I have a friend who has two big sons and a carnivore husband and she doesn’t touch raw meat!  I guess she does funny things like hold it at a distance with tongs and stuff.  It cracks me up when I try to imagine her preparing meat loaf (which she says she doesn’t do anyway).  Wouldn’t that be fun to watch?

I was planning on intervening for this part, but he did a great job.  I got to keep my hands clean!

This is my task oriented kid.  I really think he can be the designated rice cooker from now on.  He wanted, “NO HELP MOM!”

One thing’s for sure.  We’ll have really clean rice with him.  The white water really irritated him.

I wish I had a pic of the look on his face when I told him that he would be using the stove.  It was almost enough to be on one of those, “We’re going to Disneyland!” commercials.

My mushroom girl.

The first few were a little “smashy.”  It’s amazing how quickly kids adjust when we don’t intervene.

It wasn’t until I saw this picture that I realized there was NO FIGHTING the whole time!

Can you tell she was just dying to get in on the action.  She thought it was cool to sit up on the stool and hold a knife.  I know…a one year old and a knife (gasp!).  Before you go calling CPS on me, a “responsible person” was standing right behind her.

This person was equally excited about using the stove.  Again…wish I had a pic of that!

Everyone’s working hard in the kitchen except me!  Well, and I guess the little guy caught eating the mozzarella.

Oh there…he’s back to work.

Mmmmm.  Well, it really did taste great.  Even if the cheese guy was eating on the job.

She called dibs on the “I’m enjoying it” pic.It really was a LOT of fun.  They did everything from beginning to end.  I didn’t even have to wash my hands once!  It took about four times as long.  And we didn’t start Family Home Evening (FHE) until about 8:30pm…but it was definitely worth it.  They’ve been talking about it all day today.  It surprised me how capable they were of doing everything.  I’m looking forward to the next one.  I just need to start a bit earlier this time!


5 Responses to “Cooking for Love…and Positive Reinforcement”

  1. beth June 28, 2011 at 11:45 PM #

    – i was gonna say “send them to my house!” but then i remembered, they’re kias and kias come with a big mess.
    – “little guy”?? that’s a first.
    – the kids should have blog names. better yet, let them pick!

    • emmiekia June 28, 2011 at 11:57 PM #

      Ooh, I like the idea of letting them choose their blog names. I’ve been trying to figure that out!

  2. tmom June 29, 2011 at 10:33 AM #

    Oooo-“little guy” has to be Limu Bae (sp). What a great mom!

  3. Kailani June 29, 2011 at 11:45 AM #

    Love it! I was thinking the same thing….”little guy”?

  4. Traci June 29, 2011 at 8:37 PM #

    what a good mommy! They look like they had a blast, and I love how you described everything.

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