Can I Take Your Order Please?

I don’t know if it’s because it’s been 100 degrees for so long or because of the whole spirit of summer, or because there’s just been a breakdown in discipline around here.

Whatever the reason, it was time to put my foot down.

We used to eat like a normal family. Someone would cook. People would eat. Everyone would scatter, trying to get away with not helping with the dishes. Someone would slip up and end up to their elbows in plates, whining about how they have to do EVERYTHING around here.

Pretty normal. Then, somewhere along the way, somebody stopped eating hot dogs. Someone else stopped eating pizza. Chicken was on the no way list. Only two people would even pronounce the word fish. Macaroni and cheese became the only food for one person.

We had entered the short order cook’s nightmare zone.

It became increasingly impossible to pick a restaurant let alone make dinner at home. Suddenly everyone had become some exotic zoo animal with extremely sensitive diet requirements.

Given that I fulfill most of our dining needs I had had it. I was starting to prepare four totally different meals every night. Who do I look like, the galloping gourmet on the run? Julia Child on a double espresso? The naked chef… streaking?

Sunday I finally resorted to the one thing I haven’t tried, but seen on television.

“That’s it! We’re having a family meeting!”

Everyone stared at me for a full 3 seconds while I stomped into the living room. Then they quickly followed, yelling about claiming the sofa versus the chair.

“We can’t keep doing this crazy food thing, we’ve got to find things to agree to eat,” I said.

“I’m not even hungry,” said Mireya.

“Anything but chicken,” said Sierra.

“You’re Mom’s right,” said my husband. “We have to work together on meals.” I beamed at him. We were a team!

We proceeded to lay some ground rules, and things looked pretty good. And then:

“Okay, I’ll grill some chicken.” I said, heading to the kitchen.

“And I’m going to have a sandwich,” said my husband, following me. I whirled on him, and he smiled weakly.

“I really just want a sandwich.”

Et tu, Brutay?

Sierra saw her opening. “Peanut butter for me!”

“I want chicken,” said Mireya. “Do we have macaroni?”

Next time, I’m not calling a meeting. I’m calling for take out.