Tag Archives: popcorn

The New Year’s Bon Appetit

Bon Appetit – or good appetite – is the traditional way the French encourage each other to enjoy their meal.

On New Year’s, this expression has an added significance as families in France gather at the table to share a celebratory meal to welcome the new year.

You can mimic this idea not with a fancy French menu for your children (unless they like that sort of thing) but by soliciting their input in putting together a menu for a feast for the family.

They may also enjoy making suggestions for the guest list. There’s no reason not to include the people who mean the most to you on the final night of the year.

In my house, my son’s guest list would be extensive but his menu would be straight off the plate of a college kid: spicy chicken wings, pizza, popcorn, and maybe some carrots if I beg him to include a vegetable.

If your child is like mine, don’t worry about incorporating ALL their suggestions – just serve one or two special dishes that make them feel part of the planning.

Besides, the best part of celebrating the new year is being with the people you love most in the world. So it doesn’t matter if you make your toast at midnight with champagne or 9 o’clock with cranberry juice, either way you’re sure to have a memorable New Year’s celebration.

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I Double Dog Dare You

I can get a little kid to try almost any food without resorting to bribery or dares.

Tofu? Devoured it.

Sushi? Slurped it up.

Channa Masala? It’s our new Hakuna Matata.

I’ve gotten little kids – ages 3 to 6 – to try all of these things. If I’ve learned one thing from my experiences overseas it’s this: if you’re hungry enough, you’ll try anything.

Now before you imagine that I have cruelly deprived my child or other children from food in order to get them to try new things, you’re mistaken. I’m the first person to yell, “Let’s make popcorn,” when I babysit for friends’ or relatives’ children.

But on rare occasions, I also manage to convince these little kids to snap out of their chicken nugget ruts and try something new.

Of course, it may have had something to do with the presentation of the food!

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