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Keeping Clean in the Kitchen

4 February 2009

The girls are now cooking supper one night a week, did I mention this to you? It’s a good habit for young people to get into, and the Consort and I want them to feel comfortable preparing a menu, following a recipe, being able to eyeball typical measurements (a teaspoon of salt, how much a quarter-cup of raisins looks like, etc.), and thinking about what makes a complete and healthy meal. On the night that a girl cooks, one of the parents will do clean-up with her: this way the girls have begun to get a sense of the mess that cooking makes, and it helps them think about how best to minimize the mess as they are cooking.

Trixie is the more adventurous cook. Her choices are multi-stepped recipes for nutrient-rich meals: stews, fancy pasta sauces, etc., always with a dark leafy green either in it or on the side; and she mostly wants to be left alone in the kitchen. Impera is the comfort-food cook. If it has cheese and lots of carbs, it’s what’s for dinner. And she will never start to cook without asking if anybody wants to hang out with her in the kitchen (and perhaps be lassoed into chopping or peeling something for her).

December was terribly busy for all of us, and so on Christmas morning my gift to the three other members of the family was an IOU (how tacky! I know! I was so ashamed) for an apron. I showed them several online patterns I had found, and told them I’d make whichever one they preferred. On Saturday, the 31st of January, the last day of the month after Christmas, I finally finished them up.

Aprons

Impera chose an apron made from two dishtowels (and with dishtowels on 50% sale at World Market, it was not very expensive at all!) and I used the general directions from Martha Stewart online (but without a pocket — she wanted streamlined and simple). The Consort and Trixie both wanted a traditional bbq apron (again, without a pocket). For both of these aprons I used cotton duck (a thick fabric often used for upholstery), because what is the use of an apron if the spill goes right through onto your clothes?

In the past I’ve made my own bias tape for sewing projects. But this time I copped out and purchased wide quilt bias tape for all three. Saved me some time, and kept me from getting these done even later than 5 weeks post-due. I think I prefer making my own (this stuff was a bit stiff), but I don’t feel bad about spending the few dollars on it this time.

I have no idea why I let this project drag on so long. Each apron took about 45 minutes to make, start to finish. (Ah, procrastination!)

And in case you think my teens love when I photograph them, this is how they looked above the crop:

Cropped cranky heads

All because I wanted a second picture, “just in case”. Heh, heh, heh.

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. 4 February 2009 3:39 pm

    I love the second photo. You could do that thing where you rearrange them and put the wrong heads on the wrong bodies. If, you know, you had nothing else to do. 😉

  2. 4 February 2009 4:39 pm

    That’s cool that your kids cook. It is indeed a handy skill.

    I don’t cook much myself, but I’ve helped out in the kitchen quite a bit. The hardest thing for me is timing everything so that’s it all done around the same time.

  3. 4 February 2009 4:56 pm

    The eye rolls are priceless!

  4. 4 February 2009 7:40 pm

    At least the Consort came up with a nice smile. Kids!

  5. 5 February 2009 2:04 pm

    The city-girl avoids the kitchen like the plague! I grown increasingly worried over her. She’s 24 and those 6 years she spent away from her Mom put her quickly on the track to fast food–primarily Chinese takeout.

    How can I get her involved in cooking again?

  6. cowgirl permalink
    5 February 2009 4:20 pm

    really–that look Impera is giving is PRICELESS!!!

  7. 5 February 2009 8:29 pm

    Hahaha I love this.

    I didn’t learn to cook until second year in college. Late bloomer.. but I’ve discovered that I really do love cooking.

    We always did sit-down dinner- that was very important, but my Mom being an University professor AND a lab researcher didn’t have much time to get fancy… And my Dad’s very old fashioned.. so.. nope I never learned to make anything but PB&J sandwich and scrambled eggs.

    That’s awesome what you are doing with your girls.

  8. 5 February 2009 11:30 pm

    OH! Very amusing picture, PI, but I think you’re squandering your credibility!

    Hm. Do you think vertical stripes make me look fat?

  9. Split Sister permalink
    6 February 2009 6:35 pm

    I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the second picture! 🙂

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