Every month, the Sycamore Wellness Community hosts a fruit or vegetable tasting at my boys’ elementary school to introduce the kids to a new healthy option. The hope is they’ll choose carrots over candy. I think this is optimistic but love and support the idea behind the plan.
Last year I volunteered every month. This year I help out less, not because of the program but because I’ve learned to say “no”.
I love to help out at the kids’ school but last spring burnt out and felt angry at being one of the same “go-to” parents. Clearly, the only one who put me in this position was me so I felt it was also me that needed to fix it. I still volunteer but space out my obligations across my kids’ grades and only say “yes” when I want to and not out of a panicked belief that if I don’t no one else will.
This month’s tasting features butternut squash. Two other moms arrive early to cube, bake and season the squash. It’s ready when I arrive to help. My job is to convince and cajole kids to “just try it”. I use jokes, peer pressure, and promises that it tastes “sweet, just like candy!” I get lots of takers.
I also help pass out napkins and stamp kids hands with a dancing apple and the words ‘I tried it!’.
The funniest things motivate kids to do things. For me, I’d need more than a stamp to do the laundry or clean the bathroom. But if a stamp did it for me, I wonder, what would it say?
I cleaned it up!
You made it GERM-FREE!
Yeah for you!
It’s Starbucks Time!