One day a long, long time ago, in like 1997 B.C. (that’s Before Children, of course) I had a teacher friend tell me during our lunch break at school that she had been watching me eat (mmm’kay, why do I feel sightly violated?) and she had determined that I was a “skinny eater”.
I was all, “Whaaaah? Huhhh?” as I continued to devour a piece of pizza.
“Yes,” she explained. “You only eat the good part and leave the rest on your plate.”
Okay, so yeah, that would be skinny eating if I didn’t make up for the discarded portions by going back for seconds and thirds. But whatever.
Fast-forward 10 years. Yesterday morning I made cinnamon toast for my family for breakfast. Because we’re all about having a sampling of the 5 major food groups with every meal — and those would be sugar, carbs, dairy (that’s the butter, of course), and… Okay so 3 out of 5 ain’t half bad.
When I set my 6-year-old’s toast in front of her, she immediately asked me to cut off her crust. Usually I have no problem cutting off the crust. I gave up the whole crust battle long ago. I actually discovered that they waste less when I give in and cut it off than when they try to eat around it.
And besides, I’ve never been a member of the Clean Your Plate Club. My mother taught me that. When we were growing up, my brother struggled with his weight, and she felt like forcing him to eat everything on his plate was counter-intuitive. I adopted that philosophy when I became a parent — not because my kids struggle with their weight, but because I generally subscribe to the lazy parenting philosophy, and it’s easier to throw unwanted food away than to fight over every bite.
But yesterday I was in a hurry. And besides, it was potato bread — not the usual whole wheat. And everyone knows that the crust on potato bread is much less offensive than the crust on whole wheat. So I impatiently told her to deal with the crust.
Of course, she ended up taking about 2 bites of each piece and left the rest on her plate to be trashed. It’s not the waste that bothers me as much as it is the fact that she consumed all of 30 calories that would need to carry her over until lunchtime. But as I said, lazy parenting is my motto, and I didn’t make a fuss.
After I got the kids on the bus, I made myself some cinnamon toast and a cup of coffee and sat down at the computer. As I munched on the toast, I absentmindedly ate the good stuff out of the middle and tossed the crusts back on the plate. When I looked over at my plate, I had to laugh.