Meet the Family
The Girl, aka The Sometimes Vegetarian: lover of music and animals, smart, stubborn, sweet and creative. When she was two years old, her favorite thing to eat was a spinach and cheese calzone from the Sbarro at our local mall. An elderly gentleman once stopped cold beside our table in the food court and asked me “What’s that your baby is eating?” When I told him, he shook his head in wonderment and called to his wife: “Edna! Come over here and watch this baby eat her spinach!” The Girl has tried out a vegetarian diet several times, though she always succumbs to the lure of bacon. However, she has been known to forego pizza in favor of the salad bar. She’ll try almost anything once, but she won’t eat leftovers or “anything that isn’t the way it’s supposed to be, like bread pudding—who wants to eat soggy bread?” Photo credit: Nona Hall
The Boy, aka Mr. Picky: lover of basketball and video games, kind, generous, hysterically funny, and shy. As a baby he’d eat anything–and a lot of it. Around the time he turned two, though, he began refusing to eat anything except 1.) frozen waffles, 2.) cheeseburgers, 3.) cheese pizza, and 4.) grilled cheese sandwiches. After we moved to Texas, he added 5.) cheese quesadillas to the list of approved foods. Fortunately for his digestive system, he’s willing to eat a good number of vegetables as well, though he never does this voluntarily. The Boy has branched out a little in the past ten years, but just a little: he will now eat spaghetti (and, in fact, most pasta dishes) without suspicion or complaint. The rule at our house—developed specifically in response to The Boy and his attitude about food—is that you must try three bites of whatever is on the dinner table. Thus, “Can I be done with this?” is probably the most-spoken sentence in his vocabulary.
The Hubs, aka The Love of My Life: enthusiastic supporter of all my endeavors (culinary and otherwise), quiet, hilarious, insightful, and all-around good guy. For many years we tried sharing the responsibility for making dinner, just the way we share responsibility for everything else in our household– but then we realized that he hates to plan for and make dinner (things I love), though he doesn’t mind cleaning up the kitchen after dinner (which I hate with a fiery passion that rivals the sun.) Once we made this discovery, everything fell into place. He rarely asks for anything specific and always eats whatever I’ve made, but he’s a big fan of the pie genre: Spaghetti Pie, Tamale Pie, Blueberry Pie, etc. The Hubs grew up on a cattle ranch, but he somehow managed not to become a meat-and-potatoes guy. And, after 23 years of eating my cooking, he still claims he can’t remember a meal I’ve made that he didn’t enjoy. He’s one of a kind.