What a Mess!

“Mom, I’ll help make dinner!  I’m a great cook…honest,” exclaimed my exuberant seven-year-old.  “Shepherd pie is my favorite!”

*Sigh*…I really did need help in the kitchen – consistent help – and that comes only one way that I can figure!  Yep, train them to cook!  So, I said (rather reluctantly) yes.  And thus begins the transformation of my kitchen from a sparkly clean place that invites creativity to a dirty, crumbly, greasy…Yuck!

First, Caleb stirred (or…flinged) the burger in the skillet until browned (notice the burger and carrots all over the stove).  He stirred in the gravy (and splashed that all over as well).

Next, he spooned mashed potatoes over the top of the casserole (and all around the counter, you’ll note) – licking up big globs as he went (ew!).

Since cheese is, to him, the most important step…

…he began by eating 2 handfuls (dribbling cheese all over the floor),…

…then spreading a thick layer over the potatoes (and the stove top).

Finally he popped his creation in the oven.

Okay, well. My tendency is to focus on the mess, to snap at him in frustration and irritation (I could have accomplished the same thing in half the time with a fraction of the mess).  How I thank my God for the Holy Spirit within me that holds me back and reigns me in.  I had to ask myself, “Has Caleb sinned?”

Of course not!  His only “sin” was in inconveniencing me (her royal highness) – which, of course, is no sin at all.  It’s so easy to react, however, in impatience or annoyance to situations like these.  May God help us (He did!) to offer grace with encouragement (“Thank you SO much for your help, Honey!”) and admiration (“This is delicious!”) to my little mess-makers as I train them to a life of service and usefulness.  Shepherd’s Pie

Brown enough ground beef for your family.  Drain fat.  Add chopped onions (to taste).  We like a lot of onion!  Continue to brown until onion is tender.  Add your favorite veggie (we like finely chopped carrot, but corn or beans are yummy too).  Add brown gravy (either canned, a mix prepared according to directions, or homemade) – about a cup to a cup-and-a-half.  Spoon this beef/veggie/gravy mixture into a casserole dish.  Top with mashed potatoes (this is a great way to use up leftover mashed potatoes) – enough for your family – and a thick layer of cheddar cheese.  Bake until cheese is golden and casserole is hot.  Yum!



One thought on “What a Mess!

  1. The mess is comical. The meal looks delicious. But the smile on your little guy’s face is priceless–so much is there within his eyes. To think that we could be missing these moments, but for the grace of God! Thanks for reminding us of what’s really important. (Now what did he think when you kept snapping pictures?! Your camera is not ever far from you, I’m learning : ) )

Leave a Reply