Friday, September 18, 2009

Family Traditions

It's funny how a seemingly insignificant action can become a family tradition. My sons and I have some regular family traditions, like having a big Sunday supper. But we also have a Friday night tradition.

I don't know when it began, but I do know it's lasted several years. Every Friday night, we have pizza for dinner. David, my oldest son, generally tries to dictate what pizza we will have, but more recently, say the last year, David and Derek will take turns choosing pizza. Upon a rare occasion, the boys will play an Xbox video game to determine who picks. That's what they did today. David won the Madden football game 33-31, so he chose our pizza, which was the new stuffed crust pan pizza from Pizza Hut.

One other tradition that we have developed over the past couple of years is that every Sunday morning, I fix a homemade "big" breakfast for the boys. When it's David's Sunday, he always asks for pancakes. I spent about 6 months trying to find the best pancake recipe. What I finally decided was that the one on the Bisquick box for Melt-In-Your-Mouth pancakes is about the best. I add a little extra vanilla, but that's it.
Those pancakes must be good because David eats 6 or 7 of them every time I make them. I also found a recipe that uses cinnamon chips and that is pretty tasty. Derek gets tired of pancakes, so I try to mix his up by putting chocolate chips in the batter before I make his portion.

Derek likes scrambled eggs with ham and cheese. He also likes to find new recipes on the Internet or off of the Food Network for us to try, and he doesn't limit his search for breakfast only. Derek has found recipes for dinner meals, too. Whenever he finds one and prints it out, we try it. Derek is definitely the food adventurer of the two boys.

Derek is also more of a chef than David. I bought a Rocket Grill at the beginning of the summer for the boys to use to cook burgers, hot dogs, grilled sandwiches, etc. Put the food in the cooking bag, hang the bag in the grill, and set the timer. It's an easy to use and virtually no clean up way to cook. It's taken all summer, but finally Derek will cook things in the Rocket Grill. Once he got started, there has been no stopping him. Today, he made himself a grilled chicken, cheese, and BBQ sauce panini sandwich. He makes grilled peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. He's becoming quite creative. I like it because there are no dirty pans in the sink when I come home from work. The cooking bags are just thrown away after the food is done.

I should start making both boys cook one night a week so they will have basic skills when they move away. That's my next big project. That and having them do their own laundry. :)

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