by the time i had all three kids home, i wanted nothing more than to be by myself. but in our small home, that just doesn't happen. i wanted to lock myself up in my bedroom, but i had to cook dinner. i start browning the ground beef when my daughter comes in the kitchen to ask to help. i told her that it would be best if i just cooked dinner by myself because i want to be alone. that's when that sweet angel of mercy says, "yes, but you can be in your bedroom by yourself, while i cook dinner." i didn't hesitate. i handed her that wooden spoon, told her to be careful and went to lay down. by myself.
of course, just to put this in perspective...my kids aren't always eager in the kitchen. there are many mornings when they can't seem to pour their own bowl of cereal. (insert exaggerated eye roll here) they don't cook a whole lot but i'm determined to
and one more note, i spent a lot of time WITH my kids teaching them how to cook BEFORE i trusted them to be around the hot stove and sharp knives without me. i started them young, depending on their own maturity level and dexterity. and then slowly gave them control. i still won't let my daughter use the BIG chef knife, but she knows which in the block she can cut with. they have to learn somehow and i don't believe in shielding them from all possible danger. all i'm saying is don't be stupid about when it comes to having your kids in the kitchen. :)