Monday, February 11, 2008

Think Buddha Ever Tried to Get Out of Eating His Green Beans?

Supper was interesting at our house Saturday night. Victoria, Tanner, and Uncle Steve were here. The way that usually works is: Ricky is already in town working at Mr. Bill's during tax season, Steve drops off the kids and then heads back into town, Tanner watches television in relative peace and keeps an eye peeled on the younger munchkins, Victoria and James and Kate play contently all afternoon, and all that means I usually get to torch for just a bit :) I think it's a win-win-win situation for all the kids and all the grownups!

My children idolize their older cousins. Tanner is a teenager, after all, so how much cooler can a person be?? Victoria hasn't reached teenage-cool status, but she gets lots of points for still playing Webkinz and being the super-cool ringleader of the munchkin exploits when these three are together. . . and that, right there, is where the problem began Saturday evening.

The Great Munchkin Green Bean Mutiny of 2008 unfolded right here in my own dining room! Believe it or not, my children may be junk food junkies but they also eat their vegetables and fruit without complaint. These are the kids who would munch on slightly thawed frozen peas for a snack when they were toddlers. These are the kids who happily ate, and even requested, "trees" (broccoli) for meals. These are the kids who'll scrap over the last strawberry and hog the entire plate of grapes if given the chance.

Apparently, this is normal behavior B.S.A.P.P. (that's before school and peer pressure). Just as I had been warned by mothers of older children, this willingness to eat vegetables almost literally evaporates once the kids start school and realize that not everyone likes green globs or orange gook on their plate.

Uh, huh, and just like mothers before me, I insist that my progeny gag some vegetables down their gullet once in a while. It's all in the name of moderation, ya know. For pete's sake, I don't deny them treats. In fact the Great Green Bean Mutiny of 2008 involved merely the stipulation that no cupcakes would be had until everyone ate their green beans. After diplomatic maneuvers, the amount of green beans was even lowered to seven whole green beans each ( we like, uh, used to like the whole green beans).

There was much gagging, much giggling, and much gawking as each munchkin attempted to eat a green bean. Victoria pronounced them the equals of slugs, so, of course, her shadow/idolizer Katie agreed. James refused to touch them after he realized they must indeed be slugs, after all, "Victoria said so." Finally, I suggested they try holding their noses to diminish the taste of the green beans. Kate grabbed her nose, squeezed, and shoveled down all seven beans in record time. James and Victoria finally ate theirs, too, with a little help from me, so Valentine's cupcakes were later enjoyed by all.

Now, here's why I asked if ya think Buddha ever tried to get out of eating his green beans. Seems to me like it must be one of those many small rites of passage for children and mothers alike. I remember the same struggle with my mom! Surely, I'm not the only child who thought she detested something that my mother insisted I should eat? So, wonder if even the young Buddha balked at something on his plate?

P.S. Here's what I did to get the green beans off my plate one night when I was a kid-- I waited until my mom went outside after supper, and then I carefully scraped the beans off my plate and back into the serving bowl :) Well, you know, I think that time she just said those beans had better be off my plate by the time she came back inside. . .


Karolen said...

LOL! I had another trick I used for liver (a food I still detest): Put a piece in my mouth and pretend to chew, then "wipe" my mouth with my napkin, depositing said piece of liver deftly into napkin; keep napkin on lap until it is full of all the liver pieces, then throw the napkin away and get a new one! Mom was fooled every time :)

angelinabeadalina said...

Karolen, that was a good one for everywhere but my mom's table-- she was onto that trick, as well as the casual toss of a bean or other food object into the houseplant in the corner of the dining room :)