There was this one time the meal plan said it was salad bar night, and as you know, the meal plan must be followed—just so there’s no mistake, I write the meal plan, but I apparently forgot to send out the meal plan memo. And just so you know, not everyone in the house is as big of fan of salads as I am.

When the Girl and I went into the kitchen to start dinner, I went straight to the pantry to pull out four cans: baby corn, quartered artichoke hearts, hearts of palm, and dark red kidney beans. I placed the cans on the kitchen island in front of her and said, “It’s gonna be yummy.”

The Girl looked at the four cans in surprise—none of the items were in our regular rotation of ingredients. She lifted hers hands in the air with a shrug and said, “What the heck, Momma? Am I supposed to choose one? Oh, can I possibly choose only one?”


Then there was the time I started pulling the salad fixin’s out of the refrigerator for lunch when the kids were on break. Then I remembered the Asian chopped salad kit I picked up for the Girl. She’s not really a salad eater insomuch as a salad is traditionally defined. She prefers the deconstructed salad, which is really just a bunch of ingredients on a plate separate, not touching or mixed together in any way that would define a salad unless it’s an Asian chopped salad.

“Hey Girl, look what I got for you,” I said pulling the kit out of the crisper drawer.

“Thanks, Momma!” she exclaimed.

Upon hearing that I bought something for the Girl, Monkey Boy ran into the kitchen, “Whatcha get for me, Momma? Whatcha get for me?

His question stopped me in my tracks. I hadn’t bought anything for him specifically. Sure, on my grocery shopping trip I picked up a few items he wanted for snacks like cauliflower and crackers but nothing specifically for lunch that day. As I was about to confess, I remembered B bought Monkey Boy a donut a few days before, and I never gave it to him.

“You wanna know what you get?” I pulled out the stale, white-frosted donut with sprinkles and handed it to Monkey Boy.

“Oh, thank you, Momma! Thank you!” He took the donut and skipped off.

Ash stood there staring at me.

Dear friend, don’t read anything into it. It was not a sexist move, and I was certainly not trying to perpetuate any sort of body image dismorphia by giving the Girl a salad and Monkey Boy junk food. She ate her donut three days before, when it was fresh. Donuts are always better fresh.


This morning as we were making breakfast—avocado on toast—I asked the Girl to butter the toast while I smashed the avocados.

The Girl stood in front of the toaster and buttered the first four pieces of toast. In the time it took for her to butter those four pieces, I had pitted, peeled and smashed three avocados and put in four more pieces of bread to be toasted. As soon as they popped, I buttered them and put them on the plate.

“How did you do that so quickly?” the Girl asked.

“I have a few more years of experience buttering,” I replied. I don’t think buttering is a terribly difficult task as far as cooking goes. Although, I never really thought about it too much until I stood impatiently by watching my kids attempt buttering. Ash is delicate and deliberate and usually only gets butter in the middle of the bread. Monkey Boy tends to attack his bread with a butter knife and his spread of choice, mostly peanut butter, so that it becomes a large smashied bread ball oozing said peanut butter. It’s not at all appetizing, so lately, he’s been skipping the bread and just going for Peanut Butter with a giant spoon. I continued, “I’m just putting butter on bread.”

“I think you underestimate the importance of that skill, Momma.”