In case you missed this quick story when I shared it on my Facebook page, here it is again.
When I was a kid, my mom used to make me and my two brothers help her prepare meals for the family on Sundays. I HATED it. Cooking just wasn’t my thing, but my mom didn’t let up. I was in that kitchen every Sunday.
When I became a teenager, I actually started enjoying it – and she said, “You’ll make these meals for your kids one day.” Pasta casserole, Chicken Kiev (my personal favorite), shrimp scampi, etc.
You name it, I helped my mom to make it.
Whenever I have a conversation with my mom about it now, she says, “Your dad is the greatest man I know, but he’s a horrible cook. I wanted to make sure that you boys (me and my brothers) could cook for your families. It’s not a woman’s job.”
I’m hardly a professional-level cook, but I can throw down in the kitchen – and I still enjoy it. Best of all, I get to show my daughters that cooking isn’t a “woman’s job” – it’s just a job that isn’t gender-specific. For the life of me, I can’t understand why people still think cooking is a female thing. Aren’t the majority of world-class chefs male? Also, dudes like to build things, right? What’s better than building something that you can EAT afterwards? I mean, when was the last time you tasted a bookshelf? Hopefully the answer is “never,” but if you did – I’m sure it didn’t taste very good.
I’d say that my mom started with me when I was about 8 or 9 years old. My two daughters are 4 and 2 respectively, but that doesn’t stop me from letting them help me out in the kitchen. I want them to start younger than I did to see how fun and rewarding cooking is. Since they’re so young, I figured I needed an additional way to show them the joys of cooking – and that’s when I received the Lifestyle Dream Kitchen from Step 2.
This thing is so awesome, and it’s easily my daughters’ favorite toy in the house. Everything that I attempted to teach (or demonstrate to) them in the real kitchen I’m able to show them in a safe and fun environment. Boiling water, using a microwave, serving portions, making tea, setting a plate, and CLEANING UP (yes, that’s a part of cooking as well) are many of things I’m able to show them. It looks realistic, sounds realistic (yes, there are sound effects), and provides literally hours of nonstop fun. I can’t help myself, either. When they’re playing with it, I’m playing with it.
And by the way, in case you have kids who like to put stuff in their mouths (like my 2 year old), the pieces are big enough so they don’t pose a choking hazard – which is a huge plus.
It doesn’t matter if you’re raising boys or girls – I think the best gift we can give our children is the ability to take care of themselves. And since we have to eat in order to live, why not get the ball rolling early by providing them with a love of cooking? The Step 2 Lifestyle Dream Kitchen is great way to get started – and it would make an amazing holiday present for your kiddos.
Disclaimer: Step 2 provided me with the Lifestyle Dream Kitchen, but all opinions are my own.