Jonathan has been doing a lot of cooking lately. Mostly at night. Late at night. His current list of likely career choices includes Chef and he delights in practicing.
Inspiration for late-night cooking is one part honing-of-craft, three parts sating-of-hunger; either way, his cooking muse likes to visit after dark.
Last night the urge to cook struck again. It was growing late. We were tired. We'd just gotten home from our weekend Willow binge and finally unloaded the van and settled down to zone out a wee bit before dragging our tired selves to bed, when Jonathan asked, "Can I cook something?"
Um - ((yawn)) - sure.
He decided on macaroni. He asked his brother if he wanted some so he'd know how much to make. That sounds very brotherly-love and all, but it's actually the result of some very intense arguing and heavy resolution work. Jonathan always took strong ownership of his culinary creations and didn't like to share it with the rest of us. Big brother got regularly steamed about it, and after some serious negotiation and a promise from me to keep enough supplies around, Jonathan now consults his brother to see if he will be partaking. Last night was a resounding yes after a weekend of non-stop gallivanting with a posse of friends.
Jonathan was surprisingly chipper and alert last night, considering our weekend, and he was chatty while cooking."Mom, knowing how to cook really comes in useful. It's a really useful skill. I'm so glad I know how to do it!" he chirped as he stirred his pasta.
Yep, it is useful.
"What other skills are useful, Mom? Let's make a list."
Ok, a list. I'm growing more bone-tired by the minute, but I guess I can add to a list. Um, driving - knowing how to drive is very useful.
"And exercise! It's useful to know how to work-out," he says, as he sets the timer for the pasta, turns on the theme song from Rocky Balboa, and starts doing push-ups in the living room. (I am not making this up. I'm ready to start drooling on myself and he's multi-tasking.)
Yes, working-out is useful. Can you turn down the music a bit? I think my sinuses are clogging up.
"What else, Mom?" huff, huff, huff. He is counting sit-ups as we list.
Well, writing. I like to write. Um, your macaroni is boiling.
"Thanks Mom! Thanks for telling me!" He tends to be really gracious late at night. I smile. He skips to the kitchen - skips to the kitchen.
"Typing! I'm so glad I can type! Now I can do it fast, faster than other kids," he states, as he stirs the pot.
The macaroni is finished, and after some frowning about the white cheese of the organic brand, he calls his brother and father in for pasta.
I think he added a few more things to the useful list, but my head is wobbling on my neck at this point and my vision is starting to blur.
Cleaning. Knowing how to clean a kitchen is useful, I suggest, hoping he'll agree.
Knowing how to play music is useful, I think. So is knowing when to go to bed.
Who gave him an energy drink? Did those garden tomatoes have caffeine in them? Is Willow magic that strong?
I shoveled down a small bowl of organic mac-n-cheese, infused with Jonathan's cheery energy, and trudged off to bed. As I lay happily spent in bed, on fresh clean percale sheets, a box-fan-breeze carrying away a weekend's worth of heat accumulation, I heard clanging and banging in the kitchen... and I smiled.... Life is Good.
What's on your useful list?