The storm had just started as I was busy trying to finish and serve dinner.
Our 4 yr old hates storms, so as he was getting more and more upset, I was frantically trying to come up with some helpful and calming words for him.
As each new bolt of lightning lit up the sky and the big boys ran to the window with excitement, our little man’s screams would just go up a notch.
“Sshhh….it’s okay… you don’t need to scream…” as I am trying not to burn the burger patties in the frying pan and I am signalling to another child to start setting the table, while my little boy is wrapped around my legs.
“Um..just picture Lightning McQueen up in the clouds….he’s.. um.. trying to race… um….Mater and (insert sound of thunder here) LOOK…that’s just them having a BIG CRASH… but.. um… everyone’s really okay…shhh…. it’s okay… please stop screaming”
Then it’s my turn…”Can someone PLEASE set the table, dinner’s almost ready!” I yell.
I do sometimes wonder if I walked calmly around the house at this point, quietly gesturing for people to come to the table, if they in fact, would actually come? Let me know if this works for you in your house…
Probably more than I should, after a few quieter mutterings, I usually end up yelling something like “If you don’t come to the table NOW, you can’t touch your iPad for a MONTH.” That usually gets people there pretty quick.
Anyway, back to the storm.
Thanks to the quick-thinking of my eldest, he put some music on, hoping to calm our little man down.
He chose UPTOWN FUNK…not quite the calming, background dinner music I had in mind, but it worked.
Our little man started his moves and singing along….”UPTOWN FUNKY DUCK, UPTOWN FUNKY DUCK” he yelled over and over again.
At this point, I am placing things on the STILL UNSET TABLE (to which I decided to let go)… Who needs a set table when eating burgers anyway?
“I know, let’s have a DANCE competition. Everyone gets to choose one song and dance, and mum can score us out of 10” suggested one of my sons.
“How about we eat our dinner?” I suggest
To say spirits were a little high and there was lots of energy buzzing in our house that night, is an understatement. I quickly realised no-one was going to sit down and eat anytime soon, so embracing the ‘fun mum’ somewhere inside of me (she’s often not around at 6pm on a weeknight) I agreed to said Dance Competition.
Everything from here on in went well…until it didn’t.
The dance floor kept getting crashed by the now over-tired and over-excited 4 year old. Everyone wanted one more turn when their song ended and no-one was happy, when I declared all their scores were the same – 8.5 out of 10! I am all for fairness…..
The burgers were cold, but still tasted great. The highlight of actually eating dinner was reminding one of my children that we don’t use our whole hand and fingers to get the rest of the BBQ sauce out of the container, but maybe we try using a spoon or knife instead?
After cleaning up said sauce, breaking up another fight over a rumbling incident and heading back to the kitchen to realise I still had more burger patties to cook, I stood at the kitchen sink and looked out at the stormy sky.
‘Try and find the beauty, joy and adventure right where you are,’ were words I had read earlier that day.
Oh boy…I am trying.
Slowly the kitchen was cleaned and I started getting the kids ready for bed.
I was a little frazzled, but it had actually been quite a fun night, I thought to myself as I headed to our little man’s room to tuck him into bed.
And all over his floor and in his bed were hundreds of little beads…..from who knows where… and I just started to laugh.
You know that laugh? The slightly-crazy-person, could start-crying at any minute laugh?
Beauty, Joy and Adventure… right where I am…..
Back to the Burgers….one thing I do when I clean out my freezer and find leftovers of loaves of bread, crusts or the ends of breadsticks, I pop the lot in my food processor and make a big batch of fresh breadcrumbs.
I pop the breadcrumbs into smaller portions in snack size freezer bags and freeze them for a day like this when I want to quickly make some burgers or another day when I want to make some meatballs. It’s a great way of using up leftover bread you otherwise might have thrown away.
The only limit to how you eat your burger is your imagination…so knock yourself out! This was our family edition – with un-toasted soft white buns and all! If I had my way, it may have had a few more fancy trimmings….but that being said, it tasted pretty good just like this.