Hi all! Hope your holiday plans are coming along smoothly…I just got my last packages in the mail today.
This week is pretty fun for me and Kyle…we’re hosting my younger sister (who’s 19) and two of her college friends for a couple of days before Christmas vacation.
They’re going to be mostly self-sufficient (I don’t have the scratch to go from feeding our little family of two to a family of five for every meal!) but I definitely wanted to help them out a little. I’m not so removed from young and broke that I forget what it’s like to visit a place that’s a little too expensive to really enjoy. So I didn’t judge when they bought sugary cereals and bags of crazy sour candy. I just filled my own grocery cart with fruits, veggies, and let them know they were welcome to snack on anything I had around.
But the big question for me was…how to appeal to the less sophisticated tastes (they’re polite, but I’ve heard several “I don’t normally eat XYZ”) without sacrificing the healthy eating we’re trying to keep up around the house?
So far, the answer has been to give them choices, keep them involved, and answer questions about why and how we eat a certain way. Last night, we made stew, and while they didn’t seem enthused while we were picking out veggies at the grocery store, they all loved it after it spent a couple hours simmering on the stove. Tonight we did pasta…we used Wacky Mac, which is a veggie pasta (hooray fun colors!), a jarred pasta sauce (I just didn’t have the time to make it), and zucchini, with an option of chicken. We also roasted some brussel sprouts and encouraged them to try some…they didn’t eat a lot, but I definitely saw some green disappear from every plate!
(I meant to take pictures, but we were all starving by the time everything was done.)
Honestly, cooking for a group of kids that seems happy to subsist on pizza and burgers and finding that they respond to healthy, flavorful food is encouraging and kind of fun. It makes me think that maybe feeding my own little kids won’t be impossible someday. I know that five-year-olds are a little pickier than college kids…but based on the average diet, they don’t seem that different 😉
(Obviously this is tongue-in-cheek fun at my baby sister…I’m sure there are college kids out there who are getting in all their fruits and veggies!)
I’m planning on springing Happy Herbivore Chocolate Chip Cookies on them tomorrow…who can refuse a chocolate chip cookie? I just won’t tell them I’m making it with whole wheat flour and applesauce.