While you are preparing your traditional (or nontraditional) Thanksgiving dinner, please let the little ones help. I know that having extra/small hands in the kitchen can be more of a hassle than an actual help to adults, but it means so much more than simply eating dinner to them. When we let children help us in the kitchen we help them feel connected to the world.
So many of our holidays and traditions are centered around food. Having our kids in the kitchen while we prepare these foods not only teaches them what our own family traditions are, but it is the beginning step to teaching the kids how to prepare these traditional foods. I don’t even remember learning to cook because it was a very gradual process. My sisters and I were always in the kitchen, watching… then helping…then helping a little more…. then doing the cooking ourselves. Having kids help also supports our relationships with them and helps them feel like an important part of the family.
So, I ask you this Thanksgiving: Please let the littles help!