I find that my kids are always looking to help when help is the last thing I want. If we are having friends over and I am rushing around trying to get everything ready then everybody will be asking for a job, or more likely suggesting something that should be done. While I love that my kids want to help, their idea of helping and my idea of helping usually very different. They always want to do the most difficult job, while I just want them to wash the fruits and veggies. I don’t want to loose the help, which means I am scrambling to find something to do that will keep them busy and let me get other things accomplished.
After many times of scrambling around trying to find jobs that make everyone happy I am finally starting to plan ahead. I have learned that it is much easier to do some prep work so if my helpers comes calling I am ready for them. A favorite job for my girls is to help make salads. They love cutting fruit and veggies, but sometimes cutting can be difficult for little hands and requires a lot of supervision. I want my kids to learn knife skills, but an hour before company arrives isn’t the time for it. That’s when I break out the cookie cutters.
I love cookie cutters, but have recently started collecting small decorative cutters that are perfect for cutting melons, apples, cucumbers or any large fruit or veggie. My girls not only love being able to have a job they can call their own, but the salads they produce always get tons of oohs and aahs.
To make it easy I cut the fruit in to slices ahead of time and then when the girls come looking for something to do it is all set for them to get to work. Once they have cut out all the fruit they like to make a yogurt dip to serve with the fruit salad, again super easy for the kids and requires little supervision.