Thursday, May 5, 2011

Eat Your Oatmeal

When I was growing up my Dad would often make a big pot of oatmeal porridge for our breakfast. He would ladle it up in generous portions in bowls for each of us. We would add a heaping tablespoon of brown sugar and milk and stir it all together. Then Dad would tell us to "eat your oatmeal, it will give you hair on your chest".

 Now, that wouldn't be so bad if we were boys but there were three of us girls and my brother didn't come along until ten years after I was born. None of us girls ever wanted the distinction of having hair on our chest. What Dad meant by saying that was that eating oatmeal porridge would make us big and strong but we didn't know that at the time and as little girls we would eat our oatmeal and then check to see if any hair had sprouted.

When Dad had to travel on business trips Mom would take over the job of making the morning porridge but by her own admission, she just didn't have the knack for making it. So it was often toast and jam or cold cereal instead until Dad came home.

Many times parents will tell their kids funny things to get them to eat their veggies or in this case their oatmeal. When I was older I realized that the oatmeal was good for me and I wouldn't actually get hair on my chest (good thing) and I said that I would never say those kinds of things to my own kids. But I have, including telling them that if they eat their oatmeal they would get hair on their chest (good thing I have two boys, sorry Alannah).

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