I have decided that in order to feed my passion and keep this blog going I will need to write every day. It may not be the most interesting of post, or the most informative. In fact it maybe a whole lot of nothing. But that’s life, yes?
I have been very blessed in this life. When the Universe needs to speak to me it does so in a very direct and blunt way. I had a mission over the summer, to feed my kids better. I was living a mainly paleo lifestyle and was figuring a whole and real food approach was what I was going to aim for. I just couldn’t figure out how to do it. Nothing I was trying was working. I knew it wasn’t going to be easy but gosh darn this was worse than pulling teeth. Then one day an ad popped up in Facebook for amazon, a book I may like. French Kids Eat Everything by Karen Le Billon the next day it was there on another page I was reading. Every time I went back to Facebook, the call of the book was sitting there. So I checked it out.
People I’m not going to lie. I devoured this book. I ate it up in about three days. This, this was exactly what I was going for! EXACTLY! This one book started a gravy train to France. I needed more. I needed more books on French eating and French living. I needed books that explained to me why they French were such foodies. Why are they living the foodie dream while I’m sitting here in North America hoping and praying for pate that does not include Glucose Fructose. WHY?!
You know why? Because France is a Country of living foodies. They believe in Food. They believe in the power of Food. Food is their religion. Children in school learn about their palates and where food comes from. Babies get on the national food schedule…babies! The whole country believes that good food should be for everyone and not just the rich. What a way to live!
In an effort to feed my foodie self and teach my children better eating habits I have dived into the art of French foodie living. I have changed our eating schedule. We have breakfast around 7:30, lunch at 12:30, an afternoon snack at 4:00 and dinner between 7-7:30. The table is set for each meal, every item you would need for it perfectly laid out. I have made sure there is a dessert of some kind for lunch and dinner and a lovely and tempting snack for 4:30. I’m teaching my kids to love and experience the food which is put before them.
I have never seen a change so quickly. My kids eat just about everything put before them without complaint. They try everything, even the weird or gross. They are using manners and meal times are turning into one of the most enjoyable parts of my day. I’m cooking without restraint. I’m diving into recipes I’ve wanted to try, I’m exploring with food. I’m turning into a living foodie, and it feels WONDERFUL!
I know to some this is not realistic. It may seem hard or difficult, time-consuming and slow. Well it’s not really time-consuming. I timed how long it takes to set a table yesterday, 6 minutes. 6 minutes to lay out an experience. We use the dishes we love, nothing is sacred. Nothing is off-limits. If we love something and can use it for that meal, we do. The cheese board I got for Christmas. The blue plates I love. The baguette board. I use it all. I want my kids to know that you don’t just eat with your mouth. You use all senses to bring it together. Food is awesome. Just about as awesome as it gets. Bringing it together in an experience is the icing on the cake.
The sad truth is approaching quickly. I don’t live in France. I live in Canada. Our school system is not French, it’s absurd. My kids are on some whack a doo eating system and I live in a culture where we use food for all sorts of purposes that does not include eating. Your bebe is crying, here it needs cookies. Bebe won’t come home from the park, bribe it with a snack. Bebe is having a temper, sooth it with cookies. Bebe doesn’t like salad, here have chicken fingers. If this works for you and you’re happy with it. Good for you, I’m not here to criticize your parenting, I’m just being truthful. With school around the corner and the world of food for non eating purposes around the bend I’m working out how it will all come together.
For now, as I drink my pot of chocolate. I’m dreaming of pate without glucose, I’m dreaming of a good French red (wine if you please), I’m thinking about my kids and their foodie future and I’m curious where the months ahead will lead us. Being a foodie just isn’t about the food. It’s about living like a foodie, experience the food, use your senses and don’t deny yourself anything. Food is life. enjoy every bite! (within moderation please, I don’t condone eating a whole cake by yourself for every meal of everyday! a bite, maybe two. take time and savor it!)