When the boys were younger, my sisters had a grand ole time making fun of their “granola, health-nut” little sister. I never bought candy or cookies unless they were made with natural ingredients. Living in the country has made it even easier to live naturally. I love knowing the cow, Maisy, who produces our raw milk for us. We visit her weekly at the ranch behind our house. Our fresh eggs come from our neighbors chicken coops. I’m thinking of purchasing a goat, we’ll name him Goatee, after all of Wade’s shaving experiments.
The family is not so keen on living like Little House on the Prairie. Wade thinks his coffee tastes too much like an animal. It does not ease his mind when I tell him that in the winter Maisy’s diet changes as she switches from munching on grass to the less appealing hay bales. The kids are beginning to refuse to eat anything that isn’t white. “These pancakes have that natural stuff in it”, they proclaim as they push their quinoa pancakes aside.
They beg to have play dates at their friends houses where the poor parents watch astonished as the boys raid their pantries shoving Lucky Charms and root beer into their little mouths. They return home in sugar comas, bloated and wan, and accuse me of never ever feeding them cheese dogs or corn dogs for dinner. I feel victimized and am beginning to cave in. Who am I to deprive my kids of the good stuff that I grew up on. Our cabinets were filled with Yodels and Ring Dings. I think I still have the plastics from those delicious desserts clinging to my insides.
My focus and my battle today is not what to feed my children but how am I going to feed my children. My friends and I have all smartened up and started a BYOF club when we ski with the kids on weekends. No more $5.00 lifesavers or $50.00 lunches spent in the mountain restaurants. Instead we smuggle in our overloaded backpacks and break all the rules made for us poor folk.
The food aisle at Walmart is where I hang out now instead of the toy aisle. My sister’s have changed their tune and are admonishing me for giving in. I inform them that I make up for the junk food with my famous smoothies. The kids hardly notice that they are loaded up with fish oil, wheat germ and Emer’gen-C. They will even drink the veggie juices we make together with my Jack Lalane Power Juicer.
I do have regrets when I visit the pantries of my Organic friends like Pam and Shannon who are extremely healthy with their kids. They drink pomegranite smoothies and almond shakes for dessert. Their cabinets in their kitchen are custom made for bulk, including twenty-five pound bags of almonds.
A bear broke into their house one day but left soon after in complete disappointment. He was sure not to visit again. What was the point? All the food stored in their cabinets was the same that he could find for himself in the forest. Trying to not waste food, Pam insisted that they keep the nuts that the bear had been nosing around in. Shannon finally put his foot down and threw them away after biting into a long, thick bear hair.
In the spring my plan is to build a new vegetable garden with the children. Maybe I’ll even invest in a green house. I have just brought home all the compost books from the library. Why not bring it all on; new dog, garden, compost. Wade walks into the house and looks in total fear at all the library books strewn about the floor. I assure him that all will be fine.