Oh, McDonalds

11 Jan

So, one of the healthy resolutions for 2010 involves me cooking at least 5 times a week.

I should probably say “cooking” in “unnecessary quotation marks,” because I would count Ramen noodles as a victory at this point. It is not that I can’t cook. I went through a phase when I was really interested being a domestic goddess and making only homemade bread and beautiful meals that certainly did not involve things from cans.

And I took pictures of said food to post on recipe reviews, and would routinely email friends pictures of pretty table settings I had designed for Bunco night or lunch with friends.

Yes, I did make layers of beans in different colors for the hurricane lamp.

Because I quite possibly have a little OCD am a freak.

A freak that is a really good cook.

And then I grew out of that phase got a job. And so I started settling for easy meals and came up with like 5 things I could make in my sleep and we ate those five things. Not gourmet, but ok.

Then one day, our daughter,  who previously worshipped freely at the altar of bacon and thought nothing was better than steak from the grill?

Decided she was going to be a vegetarian. Freaking hippie.

And I thought “ok, we’ll play along, it’s a phase.”

And anyway, when she first decided she wanted to stop eating animals, she was still all “pass the bacon and pepperoni” because you know, she was not convinced pigs were worth saving. They were pink and she hates that color. Also? The tractor-beam pull of bacon was just too strong.

Sorry, PETA.

But then, we took her to see “Charlotte’s Web.” And in addition to requiring therapy to get her to stop crying and leave the theater, it also made her decide she shouldn’t eat pigs. Thus ended the bacon exemption.

This “phase” of hers began more than 3 years ago. And I was just about to get the hang of it, the whole fake meat and edamame and protein smoothies when we adopted our son.

He was eight, and the only green thing he would willingly eat were boogers. In fact, the only things he would eat without protest were cheeseburgers, pizza and deviled eggs by the dozen.

Plus, I went back to college two nights a week. And two of the other nights in the week, someone else around here has to be somewhere at dinnertime. So more often than not, the dilemma of “what can we eat that everyone will like?” became solved with driving through and letting someone else figure it out.

But this habit? Expensive. Unhealthy. And has caused my ass to expand to its own zip code.

So far, so good. I got through Week 1 of “Operation Cook Food.” And this is not really a mommy blog or a food blog, but I may post some of the recipes that worked for us from time to time.

This week, I just grabbed the weekly menu from the current Everyday Food, which comes complete with a shopping list, and said “this is what we’re having.” I made a couple adaptions for our veggie girl, and told both kids anything they didn’t want to eat, they could take 5 bites of and then they could make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

If you’re similarly inspired, Everyday Food has a whole section on the website of these “5 meals” plans with one shopping list. You can’t see the current issue, but they have several other weeks ‘worth of menus available. Click here if you’re hungry.

You can also check out Recipe Girl’s website and the other “10 in 2010” healthy blogging challenge participants for more healthy recipes that my children probably won’t eat sound delicious.

 If you’ve got a food blog, and have not fainted from my drive-thru confession, go ahead and link to your favorite easy healthy meal. I promise to go look.

Also, an insider trading tip (since I’ve already linked to Martha Stewart and all?). This would probably be a great time to buy stock in Peter Pan peanut butter.

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8 Responses to “Oh, McDonalds”

  1. dawn January 11, 2010 at 6:34 pm #

    do you make dinner every night as it is? or is this a whole new thing for you?
    you know what’s helped me is whole foods has wonderful recipes to please everyone in the family and it can be done on a budget (plus whole foods is the only grocery store that I trust without getting some sort of disease–bad I know)
    good luck, I think

  2. KatFrench January 12, 2010 at 8:26 am #

    Right there with you. I’ve got a husband who was diagnosed with diabetes in the last year, a tween boy who won’t eat anything that’s not a white carb, chicken nuggets, or a burger, and a kindergartener who drowns everything in ketchup and pickles. Something’s gotta give, and I’m hoping it’s not our collective arteries.

    Will be watching and reading, hoping to pick up some stuff that works for you and your clan.

    • lettergirl January 12, 2010 at 4:59 pm #

      Arrgh! The pain of picky eaters mixed with special diets. I feel your pain, Kat!

  3. Cassie January 12, 2010 at 9:06 am #

    Good luck!

    The quick stir fry I did last night was easy. http://cassiepuff.net/blog/?p=1485 You could do tofu for your veggie girl and chicken for everyone else. A lot of my stuff is pretty easy to do, but I don’t know how friendly they’ll be for your little cheeseburger monster. =P

    • lettergirl January 12, 2010 at 4:58 pm #

      Totally going to check that out, Cassie! Thank you!

  4. Sean January 12, 2010 at 11:53 am #

    You will always be a domestic goddess to me.

  5. kristy - wheres my damn answer January 13, 2010 at 9:47 pm #

    I can’t wait to hear what you come up with. Luckily for us we have a 14 (almost 15) yr old that will eat just about anything you put in front of him … and then some – haha.

    He’s almost 6′ tall and a bean pole … and yet he eats more than anyone I’ve ever met.

  6. Claire January 14, 2010 at 5:58 am #

    You can do it! Absolutely you can.

    Is your DD at the age where she could make a meal yet? Could be fun. 🙂

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