My daughter told me on Wednesday night, a lunch-mate looked at her lunch, and said, “Iwww. Beets are yucky.” I panicked inside. How would this affect my daughter? Is she going to be the little girl with the “weird” lunches, bullied and tormented over her lunch? I spent a miserable year in my early teens, picked on and isolated over being “different,” and I certainly don’t want my girls to go through the same experiences.
I asked her, “So what did you do?” I held my breath.
She looked at me, and matter-of-factly replied, “I told him that beets are YUUUUUMMMMY!”
She then added, “Mama. If I eat all my bento, and all my beets, will I grow up to be tall so I can ride on the big-girl rides at the roller coaster park?”
I exhaled – relieved, and proud of her.
“Of course you can,” I told her. I then hugged her tightly.
“Do you still want beets for lunch?”
She looked at me seriously and added, “Yes. In heart shapes. And I want to go on the round ride that spins around and around and up and down.”
Beads of sweat formed on my forehead. Of course. The “Frisbee” ride that looks like a UFO attached to a pendulum that spins around, while being SWUNG around. I had jokingly told my husband, “I should go on that!!” on Mother’s Day, not realizing my daughter’s sponge of a memory bank absorbed that juicy tidbit, and held on to it for further discussion.
“OK, we’ll go on that ride when you grow up after you eat ALLLL your beets, eggs, fish, chicken, rice, nori (seaweed), veggies and fruits,” I promised. She then made me seal the deal with a yubikiri genman (pinky promise) and a hug.
Thursday’s lunch included:
Vegetable stir-fry with julienned carrots, Napa cabbage, scallions and onion, topped off with blanched broccoli. A little sea salt and white pepper for seasoning
Blanched sugar snap peas cut into small pieces, and tossed with a soy-sauce and ginger dressing over steamed multi-grain rice, with beaten egg stars
Roasted yummy beets in heart shapes