Sunday, December 20, 2009

Happy helpers

If there's one skill most parents would like to master it's that of getting kids to help with the tasks that must be done in a way that they see as fun. I can't claim to be an expert in this field, but I am fortunate that Lucy loves to help with any sort of food related task.

So a few weeks ago we enlisted both kids in helping to make pizzas for dinner.


It wasn't exactly Jamie's kitchen. There were pre-made pizza bases and Hayley and I chopped and grated the toppings before the kids joined in. Nonetheless it was fun for all as layers of butter then tomato puree were applied, soon followed by vegetable and meat toppings and heaps of cheese.All our preferences and dietary requirements were catered for by having half a pizza each to eat whilst helping everyone else with preparation of theirs.

The end result was pretty satisfying if only because we all knew we had made it and everyone ate a decent serving.

On Friday Hayley again enlisted the help of the children, this time to decorate our Christmas tree. (It should have been done last weekend but there was a saga involving a missing tree stand that I won't bore you with.)


It has to be said that crafts and decorations are less Oliver's scene, so after providing some initial help he left the girls to complete the administering of tinsel, lights and baubles. Lucy took to the task with enthusiasm and the end result was a masterpiece. I came home from my works Christmas lunch (and subsequent afternoon drinks) to find an idyllic Christmas scene.

This evening again Lucy was first to my aid as I went downstairs to make dinner. A simple affair of scrambled egg on toast meant that she could happily pour in ingredients, whisk away eggs and butter toast. I hadn't really planned for the moment I went out of the room and came back to find she'd started breaking the eggs into the bowl without me, without bothering to remove the shells from the resulting mixture. Nonetheless it made a simple and satisfying little task all the more fun to have my happy helper.