Posted July 12, 2012 by jimhigley
Tales from a dad who’s trying to do a better of job of bringing veggies to the family dinner table.
Today’s story could be titled, “Why breadsticks are NOT vegetables!”
When I was in grade school, probably in second or third grade, our teacher gave us an assignment to go through magazines and cut out pictures of all the vegetables we loved to eat. And, in typical grade school style, we were asked to Elmer’s Glue them into a little booklet so we could proudly display all the good, nutritious food we put in our body.
Sounds simple, right?
The only problem was – I hated vegetables as a kid. Yes, I know. A boy from the cornfields of Nebraska who doesn’t like vegetables? Go figure.
Anyway, I got through the project. And I vividly remember feeling like a liar as I cut and pasted several photos of things (Chinese cabbage? Ewwww!) I would never eat. But I turned it in. And got a nice smiley face on if from my teacher.
Fast forward about 45 years to last week.
I found that little project (yes, I save everything). So I was flipping through it laughing to myself about what a rotten little eater I was. But then I noticed something on the “carrot” page. Take a close look:
I’m not sure how well you can read it. The caption says “Carrots are roots we eat.” The best part, however, is I swapped in a picture of breadsticks (YUM!!!!).
My attempt to add a new food to the vegetable family, unfortunately, failed.
So here I am today as a middle-age dad trying to do right for myself and my kids by eating better. And that includes eating lots and lots of vegetables.
Finding my grade school project inspired me to try a new recipe with carrots – which I tried last night. It was a really simple dish I made in a frying pan (note to self: get a wok) with a medley of baby carrots, broccoli, an onion and a packet of Hidden Valley Fiesta Ranch Dip Mix. It called for a red pepper but – I’m actually allergic to peppers (honest!). It was great. Refreshing. Nice and crisp. And I just pulled out the left-overs for lunch with my son.
This revolution is working.
Now I’m heading back to my box of old school papers. Who knows what other treasures I’ll find!
Oh, and here’s a link to the recipe on Hidden Valley. Check out their website for more recipes for inspiration!
Special shootout to the nice folks at Hidden Valley for sponsoring this post. I’m part of their Parent Advisory Board which is charged with spreading the word about their awesome “Love Your Veggies” program. It’s all about getting kids to eat their vegetables (so they don’t develop all of my bad eating habits!) Check out all our great information on the Hidden Valley website – including some pretty simple recipes – to help you get your kids off to a good eating start!