In preparation for Ada starting solids sometime in the next couple months, we done something that was very long overdue. For years, we'd eat our dinner at the coffee table while we watched TV. Bad habit, I know. So, for the past couple weeks, we've started a dinner routine that we've incorporated into Ada's overall nightly routine.
It goes a little something like this . . .
- Between 5:00 and 6:00 we start cooking. Ada plays on the floor in the kitchen. Occasionally we trade dinner duties so one of us can go running/etc.
- By 6:30 we're at the table eating together. Ada's in her highchair, a candle is lit, and Pandora is playing in the background. (Stephen DJs.)
- We finish up around 6:50 and then head upstairs.
- Ada has nightly naked time from 6:50 to 7:00. (It helps her roll around without that bulky cloth diaper weighing her down.)
- Then we give Ada a bath (washing her every other night, playing otherwise).
- Then a quick book . . . a feeding session . . . and bedtime.
I read that while we prepare, we could consider giving her a sippy cup with a little breastmilk or even a breastmilk popsicle (a MOMSICLE!). At first the whole concept of a frozen stick of my milk was too weird for me. But when I thought about it more . . . I might just need to try it.
Last night's meal instantly became a new favorite. We made up some "burgers" using smoked paprika-chipotle tofu (the same kind we used in our Open-Faced Asparagus and Tofu Sandwich).
The buns were the BEST EVER. And we kept reminding ourselves that it's much easier to stick to a low grocery budget when we make things from scratch. We followed this recipe on Smitten Kitchen.
Here's how we made it ours . . .
- Used almond milk in place of cow's milk
- Used 2 tablespoons maple syrup in place of 2-1/2 tablespoons sugar
- Used 1 egg and didn't brush buns with the other the recipe calls for
- Used 2 cups bread flour and 1-1/3 cup whole wheat flour
- Used 2 tablespoons Greek yogurt in place of butter
- Let rise for 1 hour and omitted the second rise
Then we topped with our favorite condiments (and I know ketchup has sugar in it -- yesterday I failed at eliminating all sugars). Avocado, too. Overall, the buns took about and hour and a half from start to finish -- the rest of the meal was prepared while we waited. A bit of a longer cooking time than we usually like on a week-night. But well worth it.
Now, if you'll excuse me . . . Ada refuses to eat her "meals" all at one time today. And yesterday. And a lot recently. I have been feeding her little snacks ALL DAY LONG and it's driving me crazy.
What does your dinnertime routine look like? Has it changed since you had kids? Do you have any suggestions for us as we approach having another mouth to feed with table foods?
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