Thursday, January 20, 2011

Cooking With Babby?

I've been torn lately as to whether to give the Babby counter access. Why would I want to do such a thing, you might ask, when she currently has absolutely zero interest in what's up there? I know, I know - I'm a lucky duck, having a toddler that has almost never tried blindly grabbing at the contents of the countertops. But I would like to cook with her! Only problem is we don't have room for something like a Learning Tower. Counter height stools seem like a good idea, but then there's the question of where to put one when not in use.

And if you can believe it, the Babby won't stand up on a regular chair. At least, she's never done it on my watch, and I'm not about to be the one to teach her that chairs aren't just for sitting anymore!

Used to be cooking with the Babby was easy (check out my old hairdo, my old kitchen, and my old skinny arms, zow) - though honestly, she wasn't all that interested in what I was doing back then. Not being able to eat the results probably had something to do with it. But nowadays, with mealtimes being these crazy things involving battles of will and much coaxing, I'm looking for any kind of trick to get the Babby interested in food, including involving her in the cooking process.

So, can anyone offer me any ideas re: giving the Babby counter access, but not TOO MUCH counter access?


  1. Everett has his own "area" to the side with his own plastic bowl and a spoon he can stir with. I let him play with little bits of water and flour to mix and stir at first. That gave him something to do while I was doing something and he really seemed to enjoy it. Now he wants to "cook" all the time so I stepped it up to actually making edible things. I gave him snow and milk and vanilla and sugar and let him pour them in together and mix them..then I told him to taste it. That rocked his world. Now I let him pour my ingredients with a little stabilization help to reduce spillage and will let him use a spoon to stir things. He gets to do a lot more when it involves cookies, but we can't make cookies all the time. I've also frozen some tiny cakes so he can decorate his own cake when I make a big cake.

    Giving him a designated area with his own tools keeps him to that corner well away from the stove. Although now he likes to watch so daddy ends up picking him up so he can see what I'm doing when I'm making dinner.

  2. My mom gave son his own stool at her house that he was only allowed to use for their "special cooking times" - when Gram was there with him. She started with stirring (and tasting). He learned to measure ingredients with kid-friendly measuring cups, things like that. I had a little step stool that folded up and I could hang on a hook on the wall out of reach (Walmart). He started stirring for me when he was 2 or so. His fave - spaghetti sauce. Much much supervision on that (heat) but he never got burned. He liked cooking. His wife wants to know what happened...

  3. Would it work to have the counter height stool hang on a peg Shaker Style when not in use for Babby holding? If it is a new "tool" that only comes out at cooking time I expect she would just accept that cooking time is the only time she uses it. It would need to be real convenient for you to be effective though, and on the light weight side I'd think...but maybe chair pressing would be the thing to bring back your arms of steel. ;D

  4. @Audrey Paloma's big thing is pouring things into other things, but Lord forbid you let her stir! That's basically like putting a fan into the bowl and turning it on. I'm thinking I'm going to try the designated area that's only set up for cooking. We have plenty of snow - I'm thinking I'll do the snow thing. Worst she can do is get things slightly wet and sticky.

    @LBDDiaries As I said in my email - I think I did - I love this idea. Sort of, if this is out, you can cook, but if not, we're not cookin'!

    @momomom We're kind of short on space for hanging stools around, but we could easily stash it in the pantry so it's out of sight and mind when not in use :)


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