Posted by: spaghettipie | December 6, 2007

WFMW: Little Helpers

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I’m definitely running behind this week on my posts, but better late than never?

This week the theme was “What Do I Fix?” (meaning dinner, not handyman projects . . . or people you know.) Here are a couple staples in our house:

Cheater Tuna Casserole:
1 box mac and cheese, prepared as directed
1 can of tuna, drained
1 can of diced tomatoes (or Rotel, see Shannon for a primer on Rotel)

Mix them all together. Easy, cheesy, and a somewhat more nutritionally balanced dinner than plain ole mac and cheese. If you really want to be trashy (I’m trying to say it nicely?), throw in a can of cream of mushroom soup. Or if you’re still trying to pretend it’s healthy, stir in some frozen peas until they are heated through.

I also like to just make pasta tossed with a little olive oil, can of diced tomatoes, and sprinkled Parmesan cheese.

A tip regarding making dinner – and chores in general – that works for me is to involve your children. My two year old LOVES to help me in the kitchen and cleaning up. It takes me just a little bit longer to involve her, but at least we’re doing something together. Plus the added time to my task still takes less time than me trying to do it while managing her running wild and free. My daughter is also more apt to at least try the food if she helped make it.

Here are some examples of things I have her do:

1) Get a spoon and help me stir.
2) I measure out ingredients or cut them up, and she gets to put them into the bowl or pan.
3) She helps me pour liquid ingredients in (she loves to do that!)
4) She stirs a small portion of ingredients in her own bowl, next to me.
5) She pushes the buttons on the food processor, blender, or coffee grinder.
6) She sprays the bottle of vinegar solution, and I wipe up the counters and table.
7) She sweeps with her own broom alongside me. She also helps by holding the dustpan.
8) She feeds the dog. She helps me pour the water into the dog’s water bowl.
9) She helps pick up toys.
10) She gets to be the taste-tester.

For more great ideas and tips, visit Rocks in My Dryer.

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