This week has indeed been mayhem….I’ve had a heavy cold and it just seems to have been totally manic for some reason. The children have also been coming and going due to sport commitments and I have been in the car rather a lot.

On these occasions in the old house, we enjoy something called, “Help yourself night.” I try not to allow this more than twice a week…..honestly! I don’t feel guilty about us not always eating together as it’s just sometimes impossible.

So in the spirit of Mayhem Mondays todays meal is “Help Yourself Monday.”

The rules are simple:

  • You must have something on your bread or toast…..
  • You must choose a piece of fruit or veg but that does not include jam or Nutella.
  • You are expected not to fill up on junk foods. Yes, yellow food is often junk food (except bananas. Bananas are good.)
  • You must have a drink in a glass rather than out of the carton.
  • You must have a plate rather than use your hand.
  • You are expected to tidy up after yourself and that does not mean wiping the crumbs on to the floor or leaving empty cartons in the fridge.

Eh Voila!

Actually jokes aside, my children have learnt to make themselves beans on toast,  soups, omelettes, toasties, triple sandwiches and milkshakes on help yourself nights. Being older, my daughter can also cook the classics like spaghetti bolognaise,  roast chicken, pasta dishes and bake cakes and biscuits.

They were supervised when they were younger and I don’t let them fill up on junk. In fact, I try not to keep too many treats and snacks in the house so they are used to having fruit, salad vegetables and crackers. I think that the help yourself concept makes children more accountable for their own choices as they get older too. When they were younger they often had what I called a picnic tea which would include things like mini sandwiches, soup in a cup, boiled eggs with soldiers plus cut up fruit, yoghurt and crackers. I like the fact that they were offered, and were trying lots of different foods. I am sure they were never really fussy eaters because of this.