This is it !

Yesterday, I woke up at 6 am as usual even though I am not a morning person and six is very early for me. Even before making my tea, I started to get my kids school lunch ready. I always send something different each day and yesterday I thought I will send them hot lunch as it has been raining non stop the past few days and I imagined how happy my children would be to eat a steaming hot lunch on a cold and wet afternoon.

Yaya doesn’t like to eat beef and the other two likes beef very much. I  cooked beef vindaloo and teriyaki chicken in the weekend to make all three happy. I had even bought  lean veal from the butcher paying premium price, so my children won’t have to bite in to “chewy” meat.

I warmed the rice and the curry together making sure that it isn’t too hot. ( they only have 30 minutes lunch break and if the food is too hot, then they will end up wasting time while their lunch cooled and won’t have time to play). And for Yaya, I added a bit more sesame oil in her rice, so her teriyaki rice combo will be perfect.

I also had to send a snack and the night before I cooked potatoes, so I could make fresh aloo tikki ( all three like it very much)

While my tea was brewing, I made aloo tikki, packed tomato sauce in tiny containers, filled their bottles etc. At 6:55, the older two came in to the kitchen all ready for school, took their lunch bag from the counter, kissed me goodbye and by that time I still haven’t  had my tea.

I did all these for my children  not because I am a super mom, but because I grew up not having good/edible food even  though my family was very rich. My mother’s idea of school lunch was kappalanga thoran ( papaya) that she  cooked in bulk in the weekend with a pinch of coconut for flavour and mooru ( yogurt with worms). Amma liked cooking Papaya because it grew in our backyard and it was free. While my classmates ate rice and fish fry and all sorts of curries, I wished I had a different mother, someone who cared!

Yesterday evening, I came home tired and thought I would wash all the lunch containers before making dinner. And there it was, three thermos still full and the tikkis untouched.

Apparently, none of them had time. Yaya had science homework that she forgot to do and was doing it during her lunch time and my son had maths homework. I didn’t ask baby for her reason because by then I was really upset. Most of my colleagues do not pack their children’s school lunch. One who does, pack it the night before and the lunch contains an apple, a granola bar and a packet of raisins. She sends the same lunch every single day.

So this is what I did. I told my children, from now on they can pack their own school lunch and that I will not make lunch for them. Whatever that I cooked during the weekend will be in the fridge, they can pack it if they want to or they can come home after school and eat it. But as for me I am going to make my tea and drink it while it is still hot.

This morning, Yaya came casually and asked “mom, aren’t you making our lunch” and very casually I replied “no”

My son made maggi mee and packed it in the thermos and I know how soggy the noodles will be at lunch time. I feel bad for him.

The girls made nutella sandwich.

I do feel miserable that my kids will be hungry. But there comes a point where they need to understand that just because I care doesn’t mean that they can take me for granted. If they haven’t done their homework when they were supposed  to do it, It isn’t my problem. But if they don’t eat their lunch that I prepared with so much love and care, then they just have to live without a good lunch.

I thought I would enjoy a hot cuppa for the first time this morning , but I didn’t. I am so used to drinking tepid tea.


10 thoughts on “This is it !

  1. my son carries snacks. i make them during the weekends and freeze them. that way he doesn’t eat the same thing or anything unhealthy, and i don’t have to hurry in the mornings. i leave home by six thirty and usually get a 30 minute walk before that. i am a morning person, but cooking is not something i want to do when my brain is working properly. he is only four. i can’t get him to pack his snack box yet. waiting for the day…

    • Unlimitedrandomthoughts: I didn’t mind cooking for my kids, I felt bad that they don’t understand how much thought and care goes in to one single lunch container.

      • Kids will be kids. You can’t help that. My mother used to make good lunch for me, and my friends used to eat it all. Even though I liked my lunch, I was a showoff and used to let them. My mother felt offended years later when I told her about it. I didn’t understand it then, but I understand it now. All I meant is, take it a bit easier, and let them do what they want. I don’t feel bad if my son brings home is snack box – He gives me reasons like he didn’t get time to eat, etc. I am only worried about him feeling hungry. The reason is that, I didn’t take too much pain to get it ready. If you freeze them and then heat it, it tastes as good. And your tea is still hot when you drink it…

        • Unlimitedrandomthoughts: I do cook a lot of our meals in advance and freeze it. Normally if they do bring their food back home, it is only one of them and rarely two of them. Last time, it was all three and the three of them didn’t touch their lunch and snack. That made me really mad.

  2. I get up at 5 everyday to cook my boys lunch.. each day having a different menu. And some days, my boys will either bring home without eating, or eating a little… I have told them that they have hurt my feelings.. and if they go on, I will make them buy something from the canteen which they don’t like.

    I have gone back to trouble shoot why they bring back some food.. like 2nd doesn’t want chicken in his meals, 1st doesn’t mind. 2nd loves celery, 1st not a fan.

    I have to have a big collection of fruits..each child eats different fruits!

    I have mentioned the trouble I have to go through to pack 3 boxes of (snack, lunch and fruits) for 3 boys (soon gonna be 4).. and the better appreciate it..
    I know how you feel…

    • Geetha: I read somewhere that you never know what someone do for you till they stop doing it. I just wanted them to know that food that they get each day was cooked with love and care and the least they could do is to eat it.

  3. I honestly dont think some 20 years down the line-they dont really care what you packed them for lunch. My mom was/is not a morning person at all and she used to try to pack a different lunch for me and my brother everyday. But we still ate from our friends boxes as well.:P (And they from ours)–so I think its a case of grass is greener…
    And once we grew up and started making our own stuff, we started to appreciate how much of an effort it is too cook and pack lunches.
    And hot tikki for lunch is anyways a lil extravagant.:). You are too much…and I mean it in a good way!

    • Jina: I do think of the weather, their calendat ( ie sports days, dance days etc) and make their lunch accordingly. I love to cook and making tikkis in the morning wasn’t that hard because I had already cooked the potatoes the night before. I was upset because I felt that my kids really didn’t understand that I actually care a lot about them.

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