Listening to my son pretend to cook is one of my new favorite past times. “Some pasta,” he says, shaking a tiny cardboard box into his melamine pan. “Needs cinnamon,” he adds, shaking a little plastic “can” into the mix for spice. “Now put it in oven.” He shoves the pan under his little plastic table, waiting for the food to cook.
Choo-choo loves to play chef. He comes up with some pretty interesting combinations. The best of yesterday: chocolate cupcake, fried bacon, and a pear. I would totally eat that together in real life, especially the chocolate and bacon. I love chocolate bacon.
When I play chef with him, I add as many fruits and vegetables into the dishes as I can, just like I do with real foods. I want him to understand how important healthy eating is. Of course, he then pretends to douse everything in syrup. He thinks everything is better with syrup.
I have to admit I cringe even just make believing that I am eating syrup-covered chicken and eggplant. And I don’t want to admit to him that when I was a child, almost everything I ate had been sprinkled with sugar. I’m sure this contributes to my wanting to keep my son away from sugary stuff as much as possible. I am also sure there is probably a metaphor in there somewhere about adding a little extra sweetness into something boring or maybe even bitter every once in a while.
I can’t think about that right now, though, because I am being summoned to the “kitchen” by Chef Choo-choo, who keeps calling out to me: “What I make for you?”