This week on Instagram I was asked by someone about how I managed to get the breakfasts I get ready while managing my family & home.
My kids are not that young any more- the youngest is 5 and the others are 7, 11, 13 & 15. They aren't little bubbas who are constantly demanding my attention. So that helps a lot.
I have been cooking for a long time so I guess I am pretty fast at whipping stuff together. That helps too.
The weekends are a pretty slow affair at our house. Bodies lazily roll out of bed one by one. At any time it is a pretty relaxed household- but the weekends are super relaxed. My boys are not the super loud bouncy variety but instead pretty calm and quiet. And very very happy to spend days mooching around at home together. This also helps!
We are a household that does not do any extra-curricular activities so there is no rushing to go anywhere. Our family life is busy and enriching enough. And we all need a rest. Time to do nothing at all. Some of us have never learnt how to do 'nothing' & I wonder if this is a bigger problem in our society than any of us are really aware of.
Our family does a lot of 'nothing'. We plan very little and make sure we have a lot of unscheduled time. This also helps!
But I think it is my idle parenting that helps me most of all.
To me learning the difference of parenting how we want to versus what we think we should be doing is one of the hardest lessons of all.
I think us parents give ourselves such a hard time about 'how' we should be parenting instead of just doing it that we lose all ability to have confidence in ourselves at all.
It's ok to get it wrong. Boy do we get it wrong sometimes..... Just as our parents did before us. But that leaves us space to grow, to learn, to make changes. And perhaps most importantly of all to tell our kids that we made a mistake. To say sorry.
Is there a better thing to model to our kids than imperfection?
I'm just bumbling through this parenthood gig just like you and everyone else, trying to carve out a path that feels right to me. But more than anything I want my kids to know that my investment was in them and not in having a clean house & an orderly laundry.
I guess if I think about it I am an avid subscriber to the Idle parenting method. I haven't read Tom Hodgkinson's book but the snippets I read about it are very much the kind of parenting that takes place at our house.
We try not to overthink every single thing we do. We make mistakes. Lots of them. I don't want to spend every waking minute of being a parent thinking through every move I make to the point where I am actually missing out on the joy of raising my family.
I go with my general philosophy on life & sticking to the values I hold strong to my heart to guide me. If I can go to bed knowing that I lived my day true to me then I am happy. That often means going to bed with a sink full of dishes, an untidy floor and sometimes so many loads of laundry that I can't find the laundry floor because those things don't matter to me as much as living with meaning.
I trust my kids to make good decisions. That doesn't always mean always making the right ones- but that is part of life's journey. Getting it wrong is getting it right. Learning to pick ourselves up after a hiccup is such an important skill to learn. I want them to know that an untidy house doesn't matter half as much as being a good human being.
So, in our house- especially on the weekends I leave my kids to it and interfere as little as possible. I leave the mess that worries other people and get on with having fun, having chats, having laughs and cooking a delicious breakfast, that is sometimes not served till nearly lunchtime.
NB: For those of you who read last weeks post- PJ got the all clear!
I sobbed uncontrollably and made the vet cry too. But YAY!
The growth was some other weird thing that was NOT CANCER that I didn't hear through my ugly crying.
Savoury Chinese Custard with Mushrooms, Fresh Coriander & Chilli
This dish is based on the one in latest pages of Feast magazine.
Chinese savoury custard is very easy and super delicious.
It is light yet filling and can be topped with all manner of goodies.
It is a fab dish any time of the day.
It could be served for dinner alongside a big bowl of steamed greens.
Or as we have it- for breakfast alongside a big bowl of coffee.
WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
- 10 eggs
- 250ml good quality chicken stock
- 2 tsp sesame oil
- 300g mushrooms, sliced finely
- 4 spring onions, sliced finely
- 1/2 bunch fresh coriander
- 2 red chillies (optional)
- 4cm piece of ginger, grated
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 tbs Chines black vinegar (Chinkiang - form your asian grocer)
- 1 tsp caster sugar
- 1 tbs Rice Bran oil
- 1 tsp toasted sesame seeds
- white pepper
Preheat oven to 150C.
Whisk eggs, stock, a few good grinds of white pepper, salt and 1 tsp sesame oil in a large bowl. Transfer to a large ovenproof dish.
Stir in half of the mushrooms and 2 of the spring onions.
Place dish in roasting pan and fill the roasting pan with boiling water till it reaches half way up the sides of the oven dish.
Bake in oven for 40 minutes.
While eggs are baking, fry up the rest of the mushrooms in the rice bran oil with the garlic & ginger till the mushrooms are nice and brown.
Take off the heat and set aside.
When eggs are baked remove from oven and top with cooked mushrooms and the extra spring onion, coriander & chilli.
Serve with a sprinkle of sesame seeds.
Oh my how I love Joan.
Here is her new track......