Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Child Labor

It's been a while since I posted, so this is just a quick one during my lunch hour.  I grew up doing chores, and I have been doing them for as long as I remember.  I have to admit, I still feel the same way about chores that I used to, I just have no authority figure to complain to, so I'm a lot less vocal about it.  I remember calling my mom a "slave-driver" as kid, partially in jest, and partially with the firm belief that she and my dad had kids so they would never again be forced to set or clear the table.

Continuing on in the grand tradition of child labor, I have been instituting chores for Dominic at home.  Since he was a baby, he has "helped" me in the kitchen.  He has always cooked with me, first in my sling, then, when he reached out and cut himself on my knife, from a walker safely on the floor.  For a while he simply played in the kitchen, but then he became much more interested in helping me.  For about a year now he has been pushing chairs up to the counter to "help" and has been thwarted in most of his attempts.

At first, I would only let him help me mix baked goods, but he quickly graduated on to stiring pots and pans full of hot food.  Don't worry, I don't leave the room and I'm never more than an arm's length away from him.  In other words, don't report me for abuse or negligence.  But Dominic has wanted to do more and obeying that first instinct, keeps reaching for my knives.

Last night I was hit with a memory of what I used to do for my mom before I was allowed to trim beans. 

I peeled!  Carrots, potatoes, cucumbers.  Thankfully, these vegetables make pretty regular appearances in our home, especially the carrots.  So, I tested it out and Dominic did a beautiful job!  I'm still feeling a bit guilty for letting my 3-year old handle what could be considered a sharp implement, but he didn't come even close to hurting himself, so he'll be my official peeler from now on.

Other chores he does: putting silverware on the table, clearing the table, cleaning up his toys.  Now if only I could teach him to make his bed... but he may still be a little to small for that.  It's hard to make a bed that's on the same level as your chest, or at least, I imagine it must be.


  1. A word from the "slave driver" Good on you. Yeah Dominic. You'll be a great chef one day like your mom from all this good training.!

  2. A word from the slave-driver-in-law: Nicely done! Kids doing chores is "nestessary" for everyone's happiness.

  3. Seriously, I think it is RAD that you are teaching him how to cook. There is a family here with four highschool guys and they each have to take a turn cooking dinner for the family every week, and I am so adapting that into my family. It totally sets them up for life! And to be freaking awesome husbands!!!