Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Rules, Rules and More Rules

At the store last night, I was in the mad rush to find something - anything - to throw on the table for dinner! Allergies have been getting the best of me, and all originality has gone to pot. All I needed was something acceptable, you know? Something that said "I cooked tonight". I grabbed the ground round - on sale - and the chicken legs - on sale, and feeling rather smug at having secured two dinner options in one brief visit to the store (I HATE grocery shopping...), I started swaggering up to the front to check out. I proceeded up the cereal aisle, only to run into a friend, who was shopping with her two daughters (one a teenager and one much younger). I've always admired this particular mom. Six kids, very down to earth, seems to get it all done without flaunting it in everyone's face and still makes the occasional gaff - probably so the rest of us don't feel so bad for being so inadequate! :) She's even back to work as a teacher now that some of the kids have gone off to college. We said hi, chatted for a moment but then got interrupted by her daughter with a cereal request. "Can I get this one, Mom? It has two grams." "Sure," came the reply. Back to the convo. But then, interrupted again. "Sorry, Mom. How 'bout this one? It has four." "OK, but that's probably enough." Back to the convo. By now, though, they had my interest peaked. Two and four grams of what? So, I asked, thinking maybe it was fiber. Back in my Weight Watchers "Fat and Fiber" days, I used to pay attention to things like that. But it wasn't fiber. It wasn't fat. It was protein. They have a family rule regarding how much protein a cereal has to have in order for it to win its way into their cupboard. A serving has to have a minimum of 2 grams of protein. Surprised, I pulled my personal favorite off of the shelf, and proudly announced that it had 4 grams! Then, the teeanager proclaimed her favorite was Marshmallow Maties (poor man's Lucky Charms - I love these...), and it had two grams, thereby gaining approval. Anyway, it was surprising how many only had one gram (the fake-o Cheerios, Golden Grahams, etc.). So, I went home and told my kids about this other family's rule. Here's the kicker. For all of about ten minutes last night, I was actually the cool mom because I don't have that rule. I, who do have quite a few rules, generally speaking...was cool. It felt good - for all ten minutes. Of course, shortly after that, I was already using the old standby's, "Because I said so..." and "Watch your tone of voice..." (how do you watch a tone?). I always swore I'd never use the "because I said so". Yet, here I am. And frankly, it works - most of the time. The kids realize I'm not going to back down, so they might as well give up. Anyway, it WAS nice not to be the bad guy - even for ten minutes. Gotta' run. I wanna' see how many grams of protein are in the Captain Crunch and Fruit Loops that are in my cabinet. You never know. Maybe they'll pass. And if not, too bad. It's not MY rule!


Blogger ^starshine said...

You will have to pry my "floot loops" out of my cold dead hands before I give those suckers up! :)

4/05/2006 8:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good grief, protein? In sugar breakfast cereal?? She actually lets her kids stick that crap down their throats because it has at least TWO grams of protein?! You might as well pee in the pacific ocaen for all the good two grams of protein will do. Forget the pieces of CANDY in the BREAKFAST CEREAL, of course, the presence of protein must make it all ok... I thought I'd heard everything. Clearly not.
And don't go all muffy-alert on me, I am not on the other end of the scale, wanting to feed people organically organicated slimy all-natural pond-gunk - I just think that sugar with a bit of fiber thrown in is not perhaps the best way to start little people's day. They wonder why we have hyperactive attention-defecit kiddies. Or why the adults who eat the stuff are tired and hungry at 10.30 am. (I mean if they've been at work since 9am, not if they've gotten out of bed at 10.15)
Protein... in marshmallow maties... I HAVE actually heard crazier things, but that definitely flashes up in the top 10 list. I don't blame the MOM- the sick, sick food industry and the twisted, corrupted nutritional people misinforming people left and right, are at fault here. Forgive my ranting. Watch supersize me and you'll understand.

4/05/2006 9:17 PM  

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