Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Training our girls in hospitality

Let me start this post by being completely honest.  Although my mom is the "hostess with the mostest", also affectionately known as Martha Stewart on crack, something got lost in translation when it came to passing on her gift of hospitality to me.  Maybe it's because I was a tomboy more likely to be found cleaning guns with my dad than helping in the kitchen.  Maybe it's because I spent so much time at swim practice.  Maybe it's because I was a spoiled only child.  Anyway, my mom set a great example, always opening our home to others and taking such pains to make her guests feel important and welcome.  I want to follow in my mom's footsteps and I'm determined to train my girls now so that they can help me be better prepared to practice hospitality when they grow up.

1.  Encourage them to play hospitality.

Measle working in her "kitchen".  She loves making mud pies, or mud casseroles, cakes, and loaves of bread in this case.

Queen at a local children's museum setting the "table" for supper.

Cooking over the hot fire.

2.  Let them help you.  This is easier said than done.  It takes a little planning to come up with age-appropriate jobs for each of your girls.  Once you add in the demonstration and oversight it may take more time to have them help you, but consider it an investment in their future and yours.

Twinkle Toes (10) buttered and garliced three loaves of french bread and sliced the carrots for the salad we're taking to church tonight.  You see she has a little "helper", as well.

Mealse (7) washed and separated two bags of grapes into bunches and washed and tore two heads of red leaf lettuce into pieces for the salad.  Measle and Twinkle Toes added the other ingredients to the salad and tossed it.  Measle is wearing an apron that has my name on it.  See, my mom really did try!

OK, Queen (2) was no help at all, but doesn't she look cute in her apron, which was also mine when I was a little girl by the way?!

3.  Praise them.  I'm so proud of my girls and they really did help me get the meal ready for church tonight.  I put the casseroles together last night, Smockity Frock's cavatini, and the girls helped me with the fruit, bread, and salad.  As a special reward I bought my little helpers mochas from a local coffee shop.  Twinkle Toes and Measle have both asked if they can help serve the meal at church tonight.  We usually have 50-60 turn out for supper and I try to take the meal a couple of times each summer.  Our wonderful church secretary usually slaves away in the kitchen all day on Wednesdays and is such a blessing to all of us.  Her cooking is much better than mine, but I wanted to give her a little break and thought it would be a wonderful training opportunity for my girls.  You know what?  My girls didn't even know they were being trained.  They've had fun!

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I'm an on-the-run mom to 6 kids who studied and taught exercise science in a previous life. I love all things running, nutrition, and health-related. I usually run at zero dark thirty in the morning and am often quite hungry before, during, and after my run, but I live a rich, full, blessed life with my children, family, and friends. My faith in God is my anchor, and looking to Him and His promises allows me to live fully even when life circumstances are difficult. While running gives me an appetite, my desire is to hunger and thirst for righteousness more than for physical food.