I'm juggling a lot these days and a lot of balls get dropped. A lot of stuff just can't get done (like putting away laundry), but a good control freak like me has to pick and choose battles. The battle I seem to have picked is dinner. I can control dinner. So, I make it every day. I try to meal plan each week and rarely order in. It's not easy. I often do it in steps throughout the day, starting with chopping in the morning, then perhaps sauteing around lunch, etc. etc. If I have help with the kids I might throw together soup and leave it on the burner for the rest of the day.
I've also gotten really creative, because sometimes I can't get to the grocery store for a couple of weeks. So, I have to make do with what we have on hand. As an excellent impulse buyer and a total sucker for a deal, we have plenty of goods and a freezer full of stuff. So, I'm always able to get by.
I threw together what I could find the other day... Chick peas, frozen butternut squash, sweet potatoes, fire roasted tomatoes, onions, garlic, celery, carrots, chicken broth... Flavored it with some cinnamon and curry and thyme. It was fast, a five minute stew I threw together while I had some help. It sat on the stove for the afternoon.
Later, during the 4:00 meltdown/introduction of tv time, I decided to quickly unload the dishwasher. While moving too fast, in too many directions, I somehow knocked a Pyrex bowl out of the cabinet. It hit our silestone counter top and shattered into about a million pieces. And when I say shattered I mean SHATTERED. I was covered in little glass pieces. It filled the dishwasher, was all over the ground. I screamed at the barefooted B who was just entering the kitchen asking for crackers. And then I spent 40 minutes cleaning. 40 MINUTES. Baby was crying, brothers were bickering and whining about needing snacks, little pieces of glass were stuck in my hands and feet. And I imagined missed little pieces that would no doubt find their way into little feet. It was hell. Seriously.
Once everything was as glass-free as I could get it, I realized that I had uncovered dinner for a quick taste test. I couldn't imagine that the glass made its way into the dutch oven, but couldn't guarantee it hadn't. I looked through it. I took a few bites. I couldn't bear to throw it away. So, I made the kids mac and cheese or something. They ate and I put a few spoonfuls in a bowl. I figured that if I found glass it would be a sign that Matt and I shouldn't eat it. The first bite... CRUNCH. Glass right away. So, I threw away my bowl, but still left the rest on the stove top. It actually pained me to imagine my time and efforts, not to mention delicious, healthy food just get thrown away. What a waste.
Matt came home, we agreed to throw it away and have cheese and crackers for dinner once the kids were sleeping. It was 8:30 by the time everyone was settled. We were hungry and Matt thought it smelled good, so he might as well take a taste. And then it tasted so good, he might as well eat some of it. And little by little we each carefully, slowly ate a bowl of glass-free stew. The rest went into the garbage.
But, seriously, that was some damn good stew...