Friday, October 1, 2010

family: ... eat for two...

it's food-stuffs friday -

"giving you something to chew on since oct. 2010"

One of the benefits of being able to occasionally work from home (thanks to a flexible boss and workplace) is being able to make lunch in my own kitchen, rather than bolting down something I've tossed together in a rush as I run out the door to catch my bus.

So, yesterday, working from home, I ate:

1) a bagel&ham sandwich made from:
  • ham K rejected as unacceptable (and about which M concurred)
  • the last remaining leftover bagel in the freezer, a single half of a blueberry bagel (the only option other than bread loaf ends -- at least until M came home and pointed out that we had a shelf above the freezer drawer and there was an entire loaf of bread)
  • cheddar cheese (because we had nothing else)
  • mustard, lots of mustard

2) the leftover oatmeal from that morning, doused with yogurt


In other words, my lunch was not much better than the crap I normally toss together as I'm running for the bus, except that it consisted of stuff I wouldn't have bothered to haul in to work.

Then there was dinner. I'm not a cook. In fact, if left alone for more than an afternoon, I'll quickly revert to my bachelor days and happily eat cereal 3x a day. Indefinitely. But everything is different when you have kids. You're supposed to feel them in a manner that allows them to grow and blossom. So I grilled chicken and made rice. Oh yeah, there's supposed to be veggies too... I washed some baby carrots and picked the last, sad tomatoes from our damp garden.

Pertinent dinner facts:
  • L wanted me to sit beside her.
  • So did K.
  • M was at class.
  • It was two-on-one.
  • I was doomed.

L: Thit hea Dada (indicating the window seat between her and K).
me: But if I have to get out...
L: It ok Dada. I can move.
me: What if I sit here (knowing I'd be up and down and indicating the stool at the open end of the table).
L: No, thit hea!
me (giving in): Ok. You need to let me in.
L: (slides out and lets me climb into the tight space, then climbs back in behind me)
K: Daddy, I need more chicken.
me (sigh): What's a nice way to ask?
K: Please.
me: L, you need to let me out.
L: (slides out and lets me climb past to freedom)
me: K, you want more rice too?
K: No!
me: "No thank you Daddy."
L: I want something to drink Dada.
me (getting more chicken for K): What do you want L?
K: Apple juice. And orange juice.
me (turning to stare at her, hoping she'll catch on that I'm waiting because she hasn't said the magic word):...?
K (catching on): Please!
L: I want apple juith too. And orange juith. Mixthed.
me (pouring K's juice): Mixed? In the same glass?
L (nodding): Yeah!
me (putting two glasses in front of K): Really? Mixed together?
L ( nodding emphatically): Yeah!!
me (pouring apple and orange juice into a single glass): Ok, here.
L (pointing to the Red Hook Ale tasting glass we have, the one in which I've served K her apple juice according to Child Protective Services requirements): I want a glath like that!
me: We only have one of those.
L (starting to get worked up): I want a glath like that one!!
me: L, we only have that one. We don't have another.
L (fully worked up now): I. WANT. A. GLATH. LIKE. THAT. ONE!!!
me: K, would you mind giving that glass to your sister?
K (mouth full of chicken): (shakes her head)
me (starting to take glass): Thank you!
K (yelling, mouth still full): No! I want it!
me: Oh, I misunderstood. L, we don't have another one of those glasses.
L (breaks down completely, flailing on the window seat, kicking and throwing her pacifier and ultimately banging her head against the window handle): Waaaaaaa!
me: Oh, L, you hit your head!
L: I banged-ed it! (through tears) It hurting!
me (kissing her head): Is that better?
L (shaking her head and crying): No, thea!
me (kissing again): Ok?
L (face wet with tears): Yeah.
K: She can have that glass.
me: Really? Thank you K. L, what do you say to your sister?
L: Thankth K.
me (going to the counter to move K's apple juice to a new glass and pour L's mixed juice into the critical glass): Ok, here.
L: No! I want apple juith in it!
me: There is apple juice in it. It's mixed up.
L: No!! Apple juith. In thea!!!
me (sinking onto the stool): L, you said you wanted mixed up juice and that's what is in there. It's apple juice and orange juice.
L (tears again): No!!! No!!!! I want apple juith and orange juith in thea.
me (standing back up): Ok. Here! (grabbing the glass, dumping its contents into the sink, then returning to the table with glass and both pitchers of juice) Here, I'm pouring apple juice and orange juice into the glass. (hands glass to L).
L (tears increase): No!!!!!! No!!!!!!!! Not like that!!!!!!!!!
me (total confusion): What. Do. You. Want?!?
L (through tears): I want apple juith. And orange juith.
me: In separate glasses?
L (nods, face wet, daddy's finally getting it... maybe)
me (getting another 2 glasses from the cabinet and putting them down on the table and pouring a glass each of juice): There.
L (reaching for a glass): Thankth.
me (sinking to the stool): Are we all set?
K: Yeah.
L (nods): Dada, why you over thea?
me: Because it seemed easier.
L: Sit next to me.
me: Really?
L (nodding): Yeah.
me: You have to get out then.
L (slips out, lets me in, climbs in after):
K: Daddy, can I have more chicken?
me: Seriously?
K: Yeah. I'm doing a really good job on dinner. Can I have some gummy fruit snacks?
me: We're not even going to talk about those until after everyone is finished eating! L, you need to let me out again.
L (slips out, lets me out, climbs back in):
me (after getting K more chicken and climbing back in between K and L): Ok.
K: Actually, I need to go to the bathroom! (runs to the bathroom)
me: Really? (gets nod) You need help?
K (leaves the table and is in the bathroom for a bit) : No. (yelling now) Actually, I need to poop.
me (yelling toward her from my trapped seat): Ok. Tell me when you're done.
K: Ok!
L: Dada, can I have more rith?
me: Ok. You have to let me out.
L: You can go that way (pointing to the other side of the table, which would involve a long crawl on my part).
me: No, this way.
L: Ok. (slips out to let me get past)

I don't think I got to eat for another 10 minutes after this, and had to climb in and out at least 3 more times. At some point I sat down and said "Girls, I love to be with you, but I'm really really frustrated right now. I want to eat something and I want you both to eat too." They looked confused that anyone could feel frustrated while having a meal that could very likely end with fruit gummy snacks.

Somehow we managed to get through the meal and move on to bath and books and bed, but I'm not sure how. The pumpkin beer helped.

But that lunch began to look mighty appealing after all...

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