Saturday, January 22, 2011

Cooking Lessons

My mother in law has been teaching my kids to cook--thank God, since I have very little skill in that arena to pass along to them.  I can hold my own with over-easy eggs, desserty items, and macaroni and cheese (I know mac and cheese is from a box, but I am the master of perfectly-proportioned milk and butter), but when it comes to actually putting together an entire three or four course meal, I get a little overwhelmed.  In my past cooking attempts, I have had incidents that range anywhere from getting my hair caught in an electric mixer to catching my kitchen on fire.  Thus I think it's safe to say that this much valued skill should be taught to my kids from someone who actually knows what they're doing.  Clint's a good cook, but he is very territorial about "his" kitchen, and doesn't really have the patience to involve the kids in dinner preparations. 

So a few weeks ago, Teri asked if it was okay if she could take the kids with her every Friday night, help them to prepare a dinner, and then bring it back to our place for everyone to enjoy.  She also said that she wanted to have them bring their laundry each week, that way they could get all of their clothes clean while they prepared their meal.  I think I must have blinked stupidly at her for the first few seconds after she proposed all this.  I was thinking, Wait, Clint and I get a couple hours to ourselves every Friday night, a home-made dinner prepared for us, AND the kids laundry gets taken care of for the entire week?  What possible thing about this plan would I NOT love?  I don't think my "yes" could have been more boisterously enthusiastic.

Since this time, the kids have prepared three meals.  Teri lets them choose what they are going to make, so sometimes it's a little random.  Like last night we had meatballs and porkchops.  The kids are doing a great job though...their meals are coming out delicious.  Plus I love having Teri joining us for dinner on Friday nights.  We get to laughing SO hard.  Last night, she was trying to recommend a movie called "The Nine Lives of Tabitha" to us that she watched as a child, and she was explaining the plotline, but we were laughing uproariously because it sounded like the worst movie that was ever made in the history of movies (girl's cat dies, gets buried alive, gets saved, comes back, little girl sees cat and tells everyone it's alive but no one believes her, little girl gets pneumonia, almost dies, etc, etc).  And the whole time we're telling Teri, "My God this movie sounds AWFUL," she's laughing hysterically and saying over and over, "No I swear, it's really good!"*

Today I finished reading the Princess Bride (one of the books on my reading list) and worked some more on my painting.  The flower and background are finished; I just need to add in the dew droplets.  Clint and I went to Michaels this evening and bought a few canvases and some better brushes.  I'm not ready to paint on canvas yet, but at least we have them now.  I also worked out today, but only for about twenty minutes. I wasn't planning to work out at all, but I single-handedly ate two-and-a-half bowls of salsa at La Casita tonight, not to mention the correlating chips. 

*We later found Teri's terrible-sounding movie on Netflix (which was NOT called "The Nine Lives of Tabitha"), so of course we're going to watch it simply out of morbid curiosity.  I know I watched this movie as a child, because the real name of the movie sounds so familiar!  It's called "The Three Lives of Thomasina." 


  1. Wow, Teri is awesome!! You're really lucky to have such great in-laws, Jodi. Added bonus, your kids will grow up and be able to cook! Matt can't cook at all, he's really only allowed to make coffee and use the microwave. His mother couldn't cook and made everything from a box, or can, or microwave. So, he likes that kind of food, but can't cook at all!

  2. What a great thing for all of you. And what memories for the kids! Teri is a true grandmother that wants to be fully part of her grandkids' lives and some children don't even have that from parents, let alone grandparents.

    I can cook and well. I understand Clint's feelings of territory, however. John is like that. I appreciate him cooking (he's the bomb and does it with ease) when I'm super busy, but if I do have time and want to get in there, I feel like I have to ask permission! It's a bit comical.

  3. It's strange that I don't cook Kristyn because my mom DID actually teach me to as a child (which was pretty awesome since she was a single mom). But we mostly cooked casseroles, which to this day I can make with ease. When it comes to cooking actual meat entrees with additional side dishes, that's when I start to get flustered. Honestly though, I think if Clint WASN'T able to cook, I would probably rise to the challenge and become the chef in our family. It's easy to play helpless when your spouse is already so efficient at something and doesn't mind doing it. I remember you couldn't cook back when you lived in Cali, but once you married Matt, it sort of became a necessary skill for you to learn, LOL.

    Teri IS amazing, Niecy. I couldn't ask for a better mother in law. That's great that you and John are both so apt in the kitchen! I often feel guilty that Clint prepares almost all of our meals. He swears up and down that he loves doing it, but the traditional "domesticated" woman buried deep within me cries out that it should be ME serving my family. But then the hungry, lazy me just gobbles it all up with a smile.


Thanks for your comment!