I think the generation of Cleavers and Bradys had a secret they chose not to pass on to the more modern, double-income families: making dinner can be rewarding, fulfilling, and… gasp… FUN!

Lots of good reasons went into my decision to attempt some regular, home-cooked family meals around the table. Not the least of which is that no one expected me to do it, as I tend to be a bit rebellious. (I know, right? Doesn’t seem like me.)

So, here’s a list of making-dinner ideas that I kicked to the curb:

  1. It’s the mother’s job
  2. All food must be cooked to perfection
  3. At least 2 adults at the table
  4. Martha-approved recipes only
  5. The food pyramid is god
  6. The kids won’t try anything new
  7. Desserts are bad
  8. Dinner preparation requires yelling and cursing and stress-complex vitamins

Instead my new mantra goes something like this:

  1. Planning meals is a creative process
  2. I love sharp knives and yellow kitchen appliances
  3. Food is fun
  4. The more buttah the bettah
  5. Sometimes you just need some chocolate cake
  6. There’s more to life than Italian – Hoosiers have ethnic food, too (see number 7)
  7. Casseroles are magic, especially if they contain Fritos
  8. Cook and they will come (and try new things)
  9. Dinner promotes bonding
  10. Praise is not required to appreciate the joy of cooking

And so you have it. I, Miss Fast-Food America, am cooking dinner for my family.

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