Why I ruin dinner

Hi, my name is Mark.  I live in Pennsylvania and I am a stay at home dad to THREE BOYS, six, three, and zero.  I have been a stay at home dad since 2001, which means I should be good at this by now.  Um, right.

Anyway the idea for this blog was born from my wife Karen, who in her blog chronicled several dishes that I prepared that were each a smashing success.  I started to get a little undeserved praise, so I figured I would show an honest view of my cooking skills.  I suppose in this blog I will mention successes in the kitchen, but that’s not really funny, is it?

Then Karen got this GREAT idea that I could include my failures as a parent in the blog as well, thereby supplying me with an endless stream of material and entertainment for the world at large, and not just her.  It’s a shock that she even trusts me to stay home with the kids.

 Anyway, since my wonderful wife goes to work every day and often comes  home late I am forced to do at least some of the cooking.  I don’t mind, though, I really enjoy cooking, except that at times my children refuse to eat my cooking.  I’ve always had to do some of the cooking, and I would follow recipes with some form of success or make things up and fail miserably.  Then I discovered two things that would change my life forever: The Food Network and DVR (Alton Brown is KING).  You mean I can save all these shows and watch them WHILE I make the food?  Where do I sign?  So now I’m kind of a foodie, except I haven’t got the skills to match.  I like aiming high, but when you aim too high sometimes you crash and burn.  And when you crash and burn, grab the camera.

Karen is a wonderful cook and is the first to tell you that she’s better than me.  However her job forces her to smile politely and force down the food that I have slaved over for at least 20 minutes.  There are still times that I try to make something on my own from what we have lying around the house, and usually we end up ordering a pizza after I’ve ruined something. 

My favorite pastime is making substitutions!  Oh, the substitutions I make based on what I have in the house are spectacular!  But that’s another post.  There are times when going to the store to buy two ingredients for a dish is simply out of the question.  So I ask myself things like, “What’s kind of like sherry vinegar? Of course! balsamic vinegar!”  I don’t need to tell you what happens next. 

 Karen is scared that I will start ruining dinner on purpose just so I have blog fodder.  Silly Wifey.  She knows by now that I don’t have to TRY.  Sometimes dinner just gets ruined.

 We’ll see…

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10 responses

31 01 2007
Dawn

Full time stay at home dad to three rambunctious boys – it’s a wonder you have any sanity, let alone the ability or desire to make dinner. I can tell this blog is going to be fun.

19 02 2007
Aunt Dianne

Hey Mark this is great. I will have to have Uncle John check this out. Since he retired I have suggested to him that he could try cooking since I’m still working. So far no deal. Maybe you can inspire him.

You are doing a great job with the boys and I admire your creativity. Look forward to reading more.

12 07 2007
Fran

My hubby has a blog that I’m invited to contribute to… but I’m the stay-at-home parent in our family (also to 3 kiddos). And I wonder truly how you find the time. Reading your blog has been very good entertainment and food-for-thought as I menu-plan today! Thanks!

Our blog if you want to check it out: seasonaleating.blogspot.com

P.S. My good parenting at the moment includes instructing children in the next room to stop screaming at each other! 🙂

16 05 2008
Craig

I stumbled across your page while trying to find a picture of “Doubles” on the web to show someone that I work with. Great site!

I have a bag of hot peppers in front of me now, getting ready to make some chutney. Page 244 of the Naparima book 🙂

I am expecting my third son in August, so I found the other parts of your blog great to look at too. I will most certainly be back!

All the best,
Craig

18 06 2008
Alison

I found the link to your blog from your new Facebook profile, Mark–and love it. I had no idea you were such a funny writer (though, of course you are!). My favorite line so far is: It’s a shock that she even trusts me to stay home with the kids.
I’m terribly fond of substitutions as well. And mine almost always come out like yours, I am afraid. Welcome to “real” parenting! 🙂

4 07 2008
Leah

Ok, can I be in your club? Cuz I need a club where all the other members wreck food too. My mom keeps telling me, “If you cook more often, you’ll get better at it, and then you’ll like it.” Ummm why in the WORLD Would I want to do something I detest MORE OFTEN? Does a person do LAUNDRY more often so that they’ll learn to like it? Anyway, I’ve raised 5 kids. The 4 oldest are all out of the house and I just have one 12 year old at home, so why start cooking now? My poor husband. He goes to work and actually expects there will be dinner served in the evening. He SHOULD expect this, I know, it’s just a rare event. And when I do cook, the poor guy has to choke down whatever it was I was TRYING to make that SOUNDED good, but that I wrecked. I like the idea of having the DVR in the kitching. I’ll have to throw that past him.

12 09 2008
lori

the key to success in the kitchen is to order out then arrange the food on your best dinnerware and burn the evidence! wala! no more oopsies!

1 10 2008
Dawn

You really need to update this page, dude. You are now a full time stay at home dad to FOUR boys, ages 8, 5, 2, and 0. Wow that is scary just to type. 🙂

5 07 2010
Jazzy

I found your site while searching for ‘Alton Brown’. I figured that this would make you really happy since he is your inspiration. Let it be known that a Google search for “Alton Brown’s Ice Cream” will bring up your blog on the first page!!!

27 11 2013
Steveland

I’m now subscribed to your blog. I don’t cook much so it’s always interesting to see what other people are doing out there. Just read your doubles recipe. I think I’m going to give it a try. It’s something that I’ve only had in Trinidad when I visited 20 years ago.

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