The desire to cook is strong in this one.

I am useless in the kitchen.  I bake, I boil and I can cook grilled cheese sandwiches but that’s it.  It’s pitiful, I know, but I don’t feel any need to change that because Duhdee loves to cook and he’s really, really good at it.  As if he needed any more characteristics to prove, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that he is Duhdee’s “MiniMe,” the boy has a burning desire to cook as well.  Oh, the ways I suffer.

The sound of a cabinet door being closed or utensils being gathered causes Monkey to drop whatever he may be doing and run straight for the kitchen.  He loves to add pinches of this and that to Duhdee’s recipes.  He has to be supervised very closely because he will add things that should not, under any circumstances, be added.  For instance, garlic croutons to Duhdee’s coffee?  Duhdee was really confused as to why he coffee tasted so terrible until he cleaned out the pot, ha.   Extra, extra, extra salt?  Sure thing!

Sometimes, though, Monkey is not allowed to help.  The rule in the house is that if something is on the stove he is not allowed to help.  Monkey hates this rule and has sat in time-out on more than one occasion due to his non-violent, but persistent, protests.  Duhdee recently made a delicious pot of beef stew1 and, since this meal revolves entirely around a stock pot on the stove, Monkey was forbidden to help.  What is a poor Monkey to do?  He’d already sat in time-out for violating the rule so he decided to improvise.

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He stole some of Duhdee’s onion and “cooked” on the kitchen table.  Heh.

Now here’s a question for you, how do you decide if a child is safe enough to assist with cooking on the stove?  Since age is clearly not going to help me here, what would you look for in terms of readiness?

  1. haha, I typed BEET stew initially, ew []

12 thoughts on “The desire to cook is strong in this one.

  • January 21, 2009 at 4:58 pm
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    Punkin repeats “hot, hot, hot” while staring at the stove. Not sure if he understands, but I do let him help me dump the noodles in the pan or stir things as long as he allows me to be right next to him and sometimes use hand-over-hand assistance. He’s allowed to touch the spoon to stir or the box of macaroni, but not the pan itself or the buttons on the stove. So the stove itself remains “mom’s work.”

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  • January 22, 2009 at 6:02 am
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    I think that is the sweetest thing ever. I would totally encourage it as much as possible.

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  • January 22, 2009 at 9:22 am
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    Yes, encourage him in any way possible. I am sure Duhdee can handle him — it just makes it more complicating when the chef is at work. When Monkey’s cousin is at the house, she always pulls a chair over and helps Grammy in the kitchen. This is quite challenging for Grammy but we seem to survive.

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  • January 22, 2009 at 10:36 am
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    Duhdee is reading but not commenting so far. It’s really his decision since he’s the one cooking and supervising.

    He did say he’s worried that Monkey will try to stir something on the stove when Duhdee is not supervising. An example, when he’s making pasta and is waiting for the sauce to cook off/thicken. He will often walk away and leave it simmering on the stove while he does other things.

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  • January 22, 2009 at 1:39 pm
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    I am concerned as his eye level is right at the stove. On one occasion, as Umma said, I was making sauce and it takes quite a while to simmer down to thicken. I left the spoon on the counter and walked into the other room. Monkey then went into the kitchen and I followed him to find him with the spoon stirring the sauce.

    I have no problem with him helping me prep and stir stuff not on the stove, but I get quite worried when dealing with things that are able to burn him or splatter and burn him.

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  • January 23, 2009 at 12:53 am
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    His interest in cooking is very cute. Our little guy is fascinated by “kitchen shows”, too. Usually we trap him in the high chair for the shows, but I know soon he will want to “help”. I’m reading the comments with interest for thoughts on when and how to do that.

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  • January 23, 2009 at 9:16 am
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    When you are cooking something that has to simmer, Grampy suggests having him help make a salad or something on the side. I know now Duhdee has to come up with more ideas of things to cook and make up for dinner.

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  • January 24, 2009 at 4:10 am
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    I just wanted to poke in and say hello. We’re currently waiting for the results of the DNA test for our kidlet (who is five in May, too, which is why I felt compelled to say hi). I’ll be shocked if this test comes back negative, so I’ve been poking around a lot of blogs and happened to come here through XDad.

    I hope 2009 is a beautiful year for you and yours.

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  • January 24, 2009 at 6:40 am
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    You have been given the Honest Scrap Award. Check out the details @ Holly Daze.

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  • January 24, 2009 at 8:00 am
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    Oh shoot! LOL Holly beat me to it ! hahaha I was going to present you with the Honest Scrap Award too! lol

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  • January 24, 2009 at 9:36 am
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    Hi Ellen, thanks for stopping by and saying hi! I hope you all have a great 2009 as well and if you have a blog I encourage you to join the Fragile X Web Ring 🙂

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  • January 24, 2009 at 9:37 am
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    This is my kind of Saturday…everyone just wanting to shower me with awards, lol. Thanks to both of you for thinking of me!

    Reply

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