Foodie babies know their way around a kitchen. (pg. 2)
“Foodie Babies Wear Bibs” by Michelle Sinclair Colman, Illustrations by Nathalie Dion
Keuken 台所 Dapur Lumi kuke Nhà bếp Kusina Cuisine μαγειρείο 厨房 Cozinha
부엌의 Κουζίνα रसोईघर מטבח Küche Køkken Eldhús Pawon Кухня رسوئی Cucina
A kitchen…no matter where in the world we live, we all have one. It’s where delicious meals are prepared, Grandma’s chocolate chip cookies are baked, pizza dough is tossed in the air and where we end up multiple times a day looking for something to eat. For babies, it’s more than a room in the house; it’s a place of adventure, discovery and play. From banging pots and pans, sorting through utensils and rolling the rolling pin to climbing into the cupboard, pulling drawers open and close and discovering the trash can, the kitchen can be one of the favorite places in the home, especially if you have a foodie baby!!
Yes, yes, I know what some of you are thinking…the kitchen is a danger zone, right? What about the glass plates, ceramic dishes and sharp utensils? Not to worry! You’re talking to the queen of baby proofing…well, not really. But the least I can say is I am a huge fan of baby proofing and safety for baby is our number one priority. I’m constantly thinking ahead to prevent unnecessary falls, cuts, bumps and bruises. But I also am thinking of ways for baby to feel a part of the entire home, including the one place where mommies spend a lot of their time (the kitchen).
So what’s my compromise? Well, with baby K who’s quite the active baby, always running around and keeping busy in anything but the developmentally appropriate child-friendly toys given to her (unless it’s food or a book), we’ve baby proofed all the cupboards except for one area of drawers. K just loves to open up and pull everything out of these drawers! Probably because they are full of fun kitchen supplies from towels and utensils to bowls and pans. I like to put in “surprises” every now and then, like straws, funnels and brushes, to see what she’ll do with them. Her favorite has been the salad spinner! She’s watched me push and pull the knob up and down as the lettuce spins to dry and now I find her filling it with toys and proudly spinning them in the kitchen.
(action shot of K beating the eggs) (K adding a teaspoon of vanilla)
I also try to include K in everything I do in the kitchen like blending green smoothies in our Vitamix each morning, making her favorite blueberry coconut-flour muffins, scrambling eggs on the griddle and preparing fresh vegetables for a meal. When handling the different utensils and foods, I make sure to use the specific words like “metal whisk” and “rubber spatula” and phrases like “sprinkle a pinch of sea salt” and “measure out a tablespoon of coconut milk” to help her build her vocabulary and language foundation. I also spend time discussing the importance of washing our hands before/after and not putting her hands in her mouth while working. The more we spend time in the kitchen cooking, the more she has developed in her mixing, pouring and fine-motor skills. She absolutely LOVES to be a little chef in the kitchen and it’s been neat to watch her do her own cooking and baking in the play kitchens we visit at friends’ homes and the Zimmer Museum.
(kitchen at Blue Bagel Cafe at the Zimmer Museum)
Now I’m curious…how does your foodie baby play in the kitchen?