Thursday, May 19, 2011

Plank Pulling Thursday

It’s Plank Pullin’ time! The one day a week that we strongly resolve to ignore the multitude of specks and sawdust around us and pull one bona fide plank from our own eye. Matthew 7:3-5, style

My friend Jennifer has a beautiful blog, one I'm fond of. You can check it out here: The Path Less Taken She has this weekly writing exercise-I forget how it started, but it has piqued my curiosity, so I'm going to participate.

I am one of those people that love to cook. I love to get in the kitchen and see what I can make. Give me a cookbook, money for the grocery store, and a kitchen, and I'm one happy camper. The end result will typically end in delicious tasting, aromatic, all around goodness. Yet, getting there, and keeping it there are two distinct things. I like that eight times out of ten, its a hit here with the family. Yet there's a back story.

First, it takes time. Having four children now, I don't have a lot of spare time-or uninterrupted time is more like it, to spend in the kitchen. When I do have a half or entire hour-the last place I sometimes want to be is the kitchen. Yet I do it-because we can't afford not to.

Going out is not an option for us, as much as I would like. With the cost of gas, the cost of eating out, eating healthy, it all adds up. The typical meal for our family of five (baby Rebecca is not yet included in the food cost) is about $5-$10, tops, when I make it at home. Going out, on the other hand, costs us anywhere from $20-$40. We just don't have it-not if we want to do other things with our money.

My kids would love it if we hit up a restaurant every week. My husband would love for us to go out for pizza or a nice steak dinner, or even somewhere just because we can. All our meals tend to either be planned out in advance, or pulled from the pantry/freezer the hour before. I tend to be the voice of reason, "No, we have food at home." "I would love to make this at home." "Why don't we do that next time"-always the "next time", never "okay, lets just do it." I wish sometimes I could just say, to heck with this all, lets throw caution to the wind and see where it blows.

Well I tried that, and blowing money sucked. Being tapped out and paying for meals on credit sucked. I hated that, and going out did not have the relaxing effect I'm sure most people get when they're being waited on and cooked for. It just became too much stress. Mind you-I haven't mentioned the issue of taking four little ones out for a meal. That's cake-I don't mind taking our kids out. They're kids-they're happy when they get something yummy and are out.

My cooking style is a difference amongst me and my friends. Its not always easy accepting the difference, but I've come a long way in not getting bent out of shape nearly as much as I used to when I see updates from friends about a new restaurant, or going out because they're tired. It's a choice they make, this is a choice we make, and at the end of the day, we're all lucky we have enough food to eat. We may go about it differently, but no one's starving. In the end, that's what really matters.

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