August 31, 2009


Better off dead. That’s the tune my family is singing. I’m not sure how it goes, but I’m sure their homemade lyrics go something like this:

(*insert bluegrass banjo music here*)

My mom’s a quack, she has no knack.
Her kitchen skills are nil.
When she says “food” we cry and say,
‘Run for the nearest hill!!’

Her food experiments make us sweat—
We think, “oh crap, why can’t she be brunette?!”

No tofu—we’re no fans!
We love our chicken, beef, and ham,
Mom! Stop torturing our ‘fam’!

I am a vegetarian. My carnivore loving family--is not. Though I don’t deny them their “real meat”, my husband sometimes decides to sneak them out of the house for a “late night snack”—I’m sure they end up at the nearest mcdonalds drive-thru, singing heavenly tunes praising Ronald McDonald.

I’m also sure--as they stuff their little faces--the heavenly fries are like a glorious oasis in their Sahara desert of homemade dinners, having temporarily forgotten the vegetarian meal still sitting on their plates untouched back at home.

This past week I have been sick and cereal has been our main dinner theme. Needing a much deserved break, my awesome hubby decided to make us all dinner. What a man. I love that his mother taught him how to cook…….we just need to work on what you can and cannot do in a kitchen.

Our dinner menu was catered to my tastes. AWWWWWWWW. That, and um…..we forgot to shop for the weekend. Oops.
Our menu was:

Corn from our garden.

Speghetti squash from our garden.

Yep, and carrots from our garden.

And that ladies, was our well-rounded meal. Oh, and potatoes that we forgot we had on the bottom shelf of the pantry.

You’re thinking what an awesome meal, right? My husband called his mother and asked, “Mom, how long do you cook a spaghetti squash?”

My mother-in-law’s reply: “You just cook it for 25 minutes.”

My obedient husband cooked it for 25 minutes.
In the microwave.

Who cooks anything longer than 5 minutes in a microwave??? WHO????!!!
I don’t say this with ANY sarcasm, cause’ I do love that man.

My year-old, beautiful microwave, the microwave that I loved…….was shot and blown all to heck from the exceedingly long minutes of cooking it endured and it now no longer works, sitting like a junk-yard trophy above my stove.

But, that’s okay, at least we still had the squash to eat.

As I watched him scoop the squash out onto a plate, I stared. “You picked a green one?” I questioned.

HIM: “It’s still okay, isn’t it? I know they’re suppose to be yellow, but there’s yellow on this side,” he said, turning it over and showing me.

Me: “uh……”

Heavens, I love this man. He is such a brilliant intellectual, but cooking skills have completely bypassed him, like a plane zooming past him on the freeway. I love how he keeps me laughing. I’m STILL laughing! Except for the microwave incident. I haven’t laughed about that yet. I will someday. Maybe I’ll blog about it too.

WELL, HEY! Wouldn’t you know? Speak of the devil……

So the squash tasted a little green. Was it worth a dead microwave? I plead the fifth and I am now moving on, but I love him. I LOVE ThAt MaN. (okay, there may have been a teensy tiny bit of sarcasm in that last one….)

BUT At least we still had, corn, potatoes, and carrots. Our family sat down to eat and I began to chew my corn.

It was hard. It got stuck in my teeth as I chewed laboriously.
“Sorry,” my husband apologized. “The corn is a little old. I forgot to pick it earlier.”
“It’s…okay,” I assured him, picking corn bits from my teeth. I ate the whole thing, grateful I wouldn’t have to subject myself to cereal—not yet anyway. Hard corn wasn’t that bad—it just takes longer to chew. I then turned my fork to my carrots.

Garden carrots. Love them. Taking my first bite, chewing and still tasting a hint of garden dirt, I didn’t complain because my husband was so sweet to do this for us ‘sickies’, even if his meal wasn’t perfect. Wait a minute, I think to myself. Is this how it is for my family all the time?
Huh. Well, I’m playing the good girl and keeping my mouth shut. I still appreciated his time and dedication. It’s hard work to prepare food. Even if nobody wants to eat it :)

It was then my preciously sweet daughter, Bisquick, announced, “Daaaaaaad! I told you I didn’t want carrots on my plate! There were bugs crawling all over them and you still picked them! They were eating the tops off some of them!”

Okay. I’d been a trooper long enough. I’m done.
I ran to the sink, cheeks distended with chewed carrot and I spit, gurgling water and rinsing my mouth under the running kitchen facet like it was a pure natural spring straight from the Evian mountains. My fork had fallen and clattered on the floor in my mad dash, but that wasn’t nearly as loud as the hoot of laughter my husband made as he threw back his head, laughing so hard, tears were shinning from the crevices of his eyelids.

Every time he took a breath to meet my gaze, it sent him into another round of hysterics.
“Bisquick!” he scolded, wheezing as he said it, “I told you to not say anything! Now there goes mom’s dinner!”

My dinner. Ugh. I had a desperate urge to run to the bathroom and brush my teeth. I eyed the last remaining object on my plate. The potatoes.

You know, I had already gambled too much that night, and I wasn’t feeling really lucky. The kids and I headed to the pantry like a wild, ravenous pack of wolves looking for some grub. Cereal it was, and oh, it was heavenly!

Now I understand my husband’s Mcdonalds and Arby’s runs. And wouldn’t you know, my husband soon joined us, pouring a bowl of cereal for himself.

Vegetarian eating isn’t scary. It’s fruits, veggies, breads, pizza, spaghetti, soups, Italian, Mexican—everything. I just omit the meat, but this is why I don’t deny my kids or my husband their taste buds. They may be little carnivores, and that’s okay. They understand that mommy eats differently than they do, and they accept that, as does my husband.
And we all agree on one more thing. Dad should steer clear of the kitchen and put the spatchula down!
My kitchen appliances are quietly nodding behind me….


{jordan} said...

I think he's working to hard...

I didn't know you were vegetarian! How's that working? Actually, it must be working great since you look amazing. Hello.

You should set up an account at Wells Fargo that accepts donations for a new microwave...

Oh, and Mr. Smith laughed really hard when he read this... I'm not sure if it's because he could relate to your hubby or if he was laughing at him... hmmmm... my bet is the whole being able to relate thing...

AnnieAd said...

okay, the next time I eat carrots out of your garden, I'm going to be looking at them MUCH closer!

Amy said...

You are hilarious!! LOVE this, who knew that you were a vegetarian, very cool! I think I definitely could be, love love love veggies and fruits!!

Megan Champion said...


Well, a little tip, Hank actually taught me that you can cook corn on the cob, wrapped in plastic wrap for about 5 min - I was SHOCKED - I had no idea this was possible, I only thought that thing was good for blowing up hot dogs....