Wednesday, July 2, 2014

I gave my child A Kid Cuisine meal.....and it's OK

Walking down the frozen section on my local Kroger the other day, I stopped in front of the frozen dinner section. There....I saw it! That blue box that took me back to my childhood. A Kid Cuisine frozen meal. This brought back memories of summer at my grandmothers when we were all too tired from a crazy filled day, and dinner had to be quick. It still however was rare. Once in a blue moon my mother would let me pick a Kids Cuisine meal from the freezer. "It's not healthy" she would say. She also said that about my cookie crisp cereal I always begged for but never got.

As a child I grew up thinking that blue box was bad for me, yet I still craved it.

Once I had kids I saw it, the health food craze. I made my daughter baby food from scratch, I choose organic when I could. I bought the fancy baby food cook books, with the ingredients I couldn't pronounce, because if given the option we always want what's best for our children. I felt like I'd set myself up to fail. I didn't always have time to roast the butternut squash or find the organic quinoa. My daughter didn't always like the fancy meals I spent hours pre making at the beginning of the week. It was hard. Why was I doing this? And why do I feel like a horrible mom for not wanting to sometimes. I had to let it go, and not put too much pressure on making everything perfect. I had to tell myself it was OK to buy the pre made baby food once in a while. Yes 2 ply toilet paper was okay, and store brand baby wipes got the job done.

Now don't get me wrong, I have many friends that just prepare organic, and that's great. I come from the thought that we do what works for our families. Moms need to do more supporting of one another instead of pushing what we feel works best for us. I think then, we will all know we are doing the best we can, and mommy guilt may be a thing of the past....maybe....

It came as a shock to me, that the other day, I stopped and actually reached in to grab one of those blue boxes for my daughter. "Penguin food mommy!" It put a smile on my face to think back to those random memories, but I thought what the heck, one meal won't be bad.

2 weeks later I was stretched thin for time. As a mom who works outside the house, dinner time fits in the sliver of time between sitting through rush hour to get home, bath time, and bed. I try my hardest to cook a wholesome meal each night, but this night it wasn't working out. So I broke out the penguin meal. Her eyes lit up, and she cried at the fact that she had to wait for it to cool down before eating up.

While she was inhaling her food (which never picky eater usually sticks her nose up at dinner time), I read the back of the box. Cooked spaghetti, whole grain pasta, tomato sauce with tomato, onion, and garlic, spices, soybean oil, Romano cheese from milk, meatballs with pork and beef, corn (with sugar....that was a little odd), applesauce, 280 calories, 9% of daily intake of fats, 15% for sodium (lower than I thought), it seemed to me that this meal seemed pretty well rounded for a frozen dinner. Now, I'm not a health expert, I don't claim to know anything really about nutrition, so I could have this completely wrong, but it seemed "healthier" than those lean cuisines I spent my 20's devouring for lunch.

Now, my goal is still try to cook a nice meal for my family each night, and enjoy it.... but if I have to break out the blue box once in a while......I won't feel like a horrible mom. My daughter CAN have a meal from a box and its OK. 

Sometimes I need to take a step back and look at the big picture....and tonight that picture is of a penguin, and he's snowboarding next to a pile of meatballs.....thanks Kid Cuisine!

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