Monday, August 11, 2008

What's for Dessert?

Apparently, when my children ask, each and every night, "What's for dessert?", I'm supposed to whip out a menu with a laundry list of options.

We have a rule about dessert in our house: don't ask about dessert until everyone is finished eating. Because without fail, the other kids who is still eating (it's Finn 99.9% of the time), will drop his fork, say he's finished, and want to know what's for dessert, too. This rule is hard for them to follow. Because let's face it, dessert is really exciting. Unless you live here.

A kid: "What can I eat for dessert?"

Me: "Well, there are some banana muffins, some vanilla ice cream, some sorbet (note: They're these sorbets in fruit halves that we bought at Costco. Totally delicious. . .and totally artifically flavored. Sigh. Won't be buying those again.), or you can have some fruit."

A kid: "Is that it?"

Me: "Yes, that's it. This isn't a restaurant you know." I'm annoyed. We go through this every night and I have to relive the insufficiences of my dessert offerings 365 days a year. "Or you could have nothing." I'm so mean.

A kid: "Do we have any cones for the ice cream?"

I wonder if I said no they'd launch into some Meg Ryan as Sally Albright-esque description of how they wanted their ice cream instead. . .

Sally: "But I'd like the pie heated and I don't want the ice cream on top, I want it on the side, and I'd like strawberry instead of vanilla if you have it, if not then no ice cream just whipped cream but only if it's real; if it's out of the can then nothing.
Waitress: Not even the pie?
Sally: No, I want the pie, but then not heated.

I think my kids are high maintenance dessert eaters.

How often do you have dessert at your house? Do you make a homemade dessert all the time? What do you offer? Because clearly I'm sub-par here.

I swear, next time they ask what's for dessert, I'm going to say flan, baked Alaska, and pineapple upside down cake and see how they react. Just kidding boys. Your choices are banana muffins, vanilla ice cream, sorbet or some fruit. It's deja vu all over again.

Tuesday and Wednesday we're off to Denver for bloodwork, an eye exam and an echo EKG--all for Finn. We're squeezing in a trip to the Museum of Nature and Science, which looks awesome, and staying at a hotel. We will be eating out. I wonder if they'll ask for dessert.


Lauren said...

Hey Natalie--Thanks for stopping by Fergus' site. I lost your blog address (when I slammed my hand on a sensitive part of my laptop--long story) and have been missing Rooney updates. Congrats to Finn and all of you on that one year mark. I bet your worries briefly (?) heighten now that the one year mark has passed, especially because other people are probably assuming you feel more relieved. Or maybe that's just me.

Right now I am exhausted because our new puppy cried most of the night (Night 2; Night 1 he was great--setting false expectations for me...). And Fergus had a great time at camp, but I was a wreck. So between physical exhaustion from puppy and emotional exhaustion from sending one's son to cancer camp, I am bleary-eyed and fragile.

As for dessert, at our house the choices are almost always vanilla ice cream, yogurt, or fruit. And if we had some big sweet snack in the afternoon--like ice cream out or a cookie at a bakery--then ice cream drops out as a choice. Usually anyway. Around here, dessert tends to be separated in time from dinner, so it can also equal bedtime snack. Then I get pajama leverage--as in, "hey, if you are ready for some ice cream, please get in your jams first." Fergus does point out that I am risking them getting their pajamas sticky, but I find that rare and also preferable to arguing about bedtime readiness afterwards!

I am glad to have you back in my circle of people to check on! You recently posted on Kristie's site, but without a link to here--see, I did try. My next step was going to be emailing you, but it might have been winter by the time I managed it.

mom to Fergus, Norah, and now a (sometimes) screaming English Setter named Teague.

Leeann said...

Hi Natalie,

Yes, dessert is a highlight in this house also. It causes young children to eat a few bites of all kinds of things they ordinarily wouldn't. The primary thing they eat for dessert is candy from a big candy jar that sits on top of the fridge. It is a Halloween cauldron, actually. It gets filled post-Halloween and pretty much lasts all year. My kids are so funny because they bargain their dessert but they are still so easy...even the 13 year old. Two starburst. One peanut butter cup and two M and Ms. Things like that. lol

There is, on occasion, homemade dessert, but not nearly enough to count on!


1dreamr said...

Good luck - and have fun, too - in Denver!

jules said...

We have "dessert nights" in our house, on Mondays and Fridays (as selected by my daughter.) If the kids eat all their dinner on those nights they get a treat from their "bag", which consists of leftover Halloween, Christmas, Valentines Day and Easter candy. I may try new foods or things they don't like as much on those nights, for more incentive to eat them. The rest of the days, they get "fruit" desserts. Unless we are at a restaurant, birthday party or at grandma's house then all rules are out the window. I make my husband wait until after the kids go to bed to snack on whatever treats his sweet tooth desires - usually store bought junk that only he eats.


Mom on the Run said...

I think I have created "dessert monsters"--a phrase coined by my good friend. Most nights I will say check the pantry for something, but invariably someone will ask for ice cream. I think ice cream is just too messy, plus then I have to say no to toppings.

I am with you...limit the choices.

Kristie said...

Gotta admit, dessert isn't really a standard here, at least not directly after dinner. But they will often ask if we have dessert, and almost always have a snack before bed, which is usually not as healthy as it should be, but I do at least try.

On the nights I *do* claim to offer dessert, it's often cookies, brownies, things I've baked. Or sometimes we'll splurge for ice cream, or even, like others have mentioned, candy.

Fruit is usually part of our dinner, so I don't think offering it as dessert would be too impressive, ha! I have offered smoothies as dessert before, though; fruit and ice cream, so .... everyone's happy.