Welcometothefeed,yourfamilytonight,podcast.Doyoudreadhearingthequestion,whatsfordinner?Whetheryouspendyourdays,keepingupwithtoddlers,runningkidstoafter-school,activitiesarejuggling,acareerandfamilygettingdinneronthetable.CanbeastruggleforusallIdontreceivebackabusinessownerwifeandmomoffour.Imonamissiontobuildstrongerfamilies.Onedinneratatime.AndImherewithtips,tricksandinspiration.Youneedtofeedyourfamilytonight.Hello,friends.Welcometothefamilytonight.Podcastepisode234,Imyourhost,marifiBakken.Todayweregoingtotalkaboutweeknightdinnerishardbutyoustillhavetodoit.ItwasaboutthistimelastyearthatIrecordedepisode75ontheemotionalburdenoffeedingyourfamily.Itisoneofmyfavoriteepisodesofalltime,becauseIreallydugdeepandthoughtaboutallofthemicrodecisionsImakeasamotherthatgointogettingdinneronthetableanditssomuchmorethantakingarecipe.Itsreallyaboutcalculatingallofthedifferentnutritionalneedsofthepeopleinmyfamilycalculating,alloftheirpreferences,calculatingmyenergyandhowmuchtimedoIhave?Andlookingatthelightsinthedislikes?MakingsurethatIhavesomethingthatmykidsprefer.Atleasteveryotherday.Alltheselittlemicrodecisionsthatwemakeasamothergointotheemotionalburdenoffeedingyourfamily.AndtodayIkindofwanttotakethatonestepfurtherandtalkedabouthowgettingweeknightdinneronthetablecanbereallyhard,butwestillhavetodoit.Imeantherealityisthatwehavetoeat,isaphysicalneedforourfamilies.Ifwedonteat,wewilldierightandhisparents,itsourresponsibilitytofeedourfamily.Andthatcanfeelreallyhard.SometimesIeverfoodPro.Ifoodismyjob,right?IcoachedfamiliesandIhelpedthem.Figureouttheirweeknightdinnerchallenges.Isortthroughwhatshappeningintheirscheduleandtheirdifferentdietaryneeds.AndIhelpedhimcomeupwithaplanthatworksintheirhome.ButdoesthatmeanthatIlovemakingdinnerformyfamilyeverynightnotatall.Iwouldalmostsaythatmostnightsgettingdinneron.Thetableisnotmyfavoritethingintheworldisnotmyfavoritepartoftheweek.Itskindoffunnythefirstcoupleyearsofmymarriage.Itaughtaerobicsclass,firstthingearlyinthemorning.AndIthoughtIwasthismorningpersoninthepastfewyears.IverealizedthatIgetmybestworkdonebetween1:30intheafternoonand5:30intheafternoonandoftentimes530hits.AndIaminthemiddleofSomethingandIaminmyzoneandthelastthingIwanttodoisstopmycreativityandgodownstairsandfixdinnerformyfamily.ThatswhendinnerfeelslikeachorebecauseImhavingtostopsomethingthatIam.Totallyinthezone.IssomethingIamlovingtogoandfixdinnerformyfamily,andImapersonwholikestocook,butweeknightdinnersarenotthesameascooking.Afunbrunchforyourgirlfriends,areinacategory,alltheirown.Theyreoftenrepetitiveandtheyreoften.DareIsayboring.Lotsofpeoplefindfeedyourfamilytonightwhentheyrefedupwhentheyrefrustratedwithhowdinnersaregoingintheirfamily,maybetheirkidsarestartingtoruninamilliondifferentdirectionsanditshardtofigureoutwhentheyregoingtoeat.Maybeyourkidjustgotdiagnosedwithafoodallergyandyouareoverwhelmedwithreadingallthelabelsandthinkingyourenevergoingtobeabletoeatlikeanormalfamilyeveragain.Maybeyoubuymebecauseyouhavegottenintoarutandyouretiredofeatingthesame10dinnersoverandoveragain,butyoueatthesame10dinnerbecausetheyfitinyourbudget,yourfamilywilleatthemwithouttoomuchcomplaint.Butthenafteryoufeedthesame10dinnersforsixmonths,yourfamilywonttouchthosedinnersagain.Andyourelike,Idontknowwhattomake.Lotsofpeople.Cometome,lookingforamagicrecipethatisgoingtofixalloftheirweeknightdinnerproblems.AndImheretotellyouthatthereisnomagicrecipe.Thateachfamilyisdifferent.Andtheresnotonerecipethatsgoingtofix,allofyourfamilyswasevenifyoufindarecipe,thatisoneofthosemagicalrecipes.Thatseasy,inexpensivenutritiousinyourfamily,eatsitwithoutcomplaint.Anditisntthatwhatwerealltryingtofindarecipe.Thatseasy,inexpensive,nutritiousandyourfamilyeatsitwithoutcomplaint,evenifyoufindoneofthoseYoucannotmakethatrecipe5daysaweekbecauseyourfamilyisgoingtogettiredofitandthentheywonteatitanymoreandyouvelostthemagicofthemagicrecipe.Dayindayout,weeknightfamilydinnerscanbehard,butwestillhavetodoitandIamheretohelpyouease.Thatburdenalittlebit.Itsnotgoingtobefancy.ItsnotgoingtobePinterest.Perfect.Anditsnotalwaysgoingtobenutritionallybalanced.Andthatisokay.Ivebeenhavingsomereallygreatconversationsin,DMSonInstagram,thepastfewdaysthismorning,IwasprivatemessagingbackandforthwithalovelywomanwhoisatrainedChef.Shehasgonetoculinaryschoolandsheknowshowtomakeallthefancyfoods.Andshewasgettingreadytogooffonaweekend.Andshehadboughtforherhusbandtofeedherchildren.AndsheshowedmehergrocerybagsanditwasfrozenconvenienceFoods.Allthewayfrenchfriestatertotschickennuggets.Youknow,thegameshedoes.Igotabagofsaladhere,sotheyregoingtohavesomeveggiesbutitwasntperfectlygourmetfood.AndasatrainedChef,shedidnotspendherweek,gettingallsortsofthingssetupinher,freezerforherfamilytopulloutofthefreezerandreheat,sothattheywouldhaveperfectlynutritiousbalancefancymeal.No,shewenttothefrozenfoodaisle.Andshegotfood,butsheknewherfamilywouldlikethat.Herhusbandwouldnthavetroublejustquicklythrowingintheairfryerandreheating,andshewasokaywiththat.AndImheretotellyouyou,butifdinnerischickennuggetssometimesormacaroniandcheese,thatsokay.Feedingyourfamilyisenough.Youasamothergettingdinneronthetable,nomatterwhat.Itlookslikeisenough.NowIcangiveyousometechniquesandmakethingsalittlebiteasier.Buttheinterestingthingis,whatworksformyfamilyisnotnecessarilygoingtoworkforyourfamily.Itisnotaone-size-fits-allsolution,anothergreatconversationIvebeenhavingonInstagramthisweekwaswithaladywhohadhitthatplacewhereshewastiredofthesame10recipesoverandoveragain.Haveyoubeenthere?ShehasalargeFacebookcommunity,andsheputinher,FacebookCommunity.Ineedyourbesteasyfamily,weeknightdinners,andshesaid,Imheretosaysomethingkindofcontroversial.50%ofthoserecipesthatshegotshecuzIhadahundredrecipes.Peoplegaveme150%ofthemwereforthecrockpotandshedoesnotabigfanoftheCrock-Pot.Mykitchenskindofsmall,Ihavetolikedigintoanotherpartofthehousetopulloutmycrockpot.ThenIgotasmallkitchensinkanditsapaintoclean.Addtothatthefactthatsomanyofthefoodsmadeinthecrock,potarewetorSaucy.AndmykidsarereallynothereforfoodsthatarewetorSaucy.AndIjusthavetosay,ifIseeCrock-Pot,Ijustdoamentalcheckbox,notformethatrecipes.Notforme.Theressomethingreallygoodaboutthat.Isthatshehasrecognizedthatthecrockpotisnotforher,evenifhalfthepeoplethatshewastalkingtosaid,youvegottotrythisCrock-Potrecipe.Itisourfamilysfavorite.Itstotallygood.Itstotallyeasy.Itsokaytosayarecipeisnotforyou,itsokaytosaythanApplianceisnotforyourfamilyorcookingtechniqueisnotforyourfamily.Andsometimestheresarealfreedominthatsaying,Iseethatisarecipeandotherpeoplesay,itsthebestthingintheworldthatitwasntforher.Iwantyoutostartthinkingaboutgoodideathatyouhavearoundfoodandyourfamily.AndIwantyoutostartthinkingaboutthekindsoffoodsthatyourfamilylikes,thekindsofcookingtechniques,thatyoufindeasy.AndjustbecausesomeoneelsesaysthisCrock-Potrecipe,orthisinstantpotrecipe,orthisair,fryerrecipeistheperfectthingordoyouneedtobuyacrockpot?Youneedtobuyinstapot.Youneedtobuyanairfryerdoesnotmeanthatthathastobeforyou.itwasfunnybecausethenItookherideasaboutthecrockpotsandIwenttomyInstagramcommunityandIsaid,whatdoyouthinkaboutthecrockpot?Areyou,doyouloveitoryoukindofmess?Ihavetosay,ifyoulookatmywebsite,youregoingtoseethat.Imkindofmesseduponthecrockpot.ItismyfavoriteApplianceformakingbonebrothbutyoudontneedittomakebonebroth,butIloveitformakingbonebroth.Butotherthanthat,SometimesIlluseitbutitsnotpreferredinthemainreason.Whyis,becausemykidsdonotlikefoodthatisfullofsoftandcrockpotsneedslowwetcooking,andthatmeanssauceandmykidsdontreallylikesauce.So,whenpeoplerespondedthattheylovetheirCrock-Pot,Iaskedthem,whatdoyouliketomakeinit?Andthatwasreallyeye-openingforme,too.BecauseIsawthatalmostallofthethingsthatmadeinthecrockpotwithlikeoneortwolittleexceptionsormeatandmostofthosemeatsorthingsthattheywouldshredandthenaddtosomethingelse.So,theyweremakingthewholemealintheCrock-Pot,toturnitintosomethingelse.Whichmeansthatthecrockpotisntdoingallofthecooking,andthatsabigdistinctiontoToday,Imheretogiveyourpermissiontoadmitthatweeknightdinnersarehard.Imheretoletyouknowthatjustbecausetheyrehard,sometimesdoesnotmeanthatthereisnothopethatitcannotbejustalittlebiteasiertofeedyourfamily.Tonightwouldnotexist.IfIdidnotbelievethattherewashopeforbusyfamilies.Gettingweeknightdinneronthetable.ItwouldnotexistifIdidnotbelievethatweeknightdinnersareimportant,ifyoulistentotheintroofthispodcast,IsaythatIambuildingstrongerfamilies.Onedinneratatime.AndIcantellyou,fromthedepthsofmyheart,IbelievethatIbelievethatfamilydinnersareoneofthebestwaystostrengthenfamilies.Andwhenyouhavechildrenthatareinstrongfamilies,whateverthosefamilieslooklike,theyaregoingtobestrongerwhentheygooutintotheworld.Itisworthputtingintheefforttofeedyourfamilybutitdoesnthavetobeperfect.Andifyouaretakingchickennuggetsandheatingtheminthemicrowave,areyouaremakingaboxofmacaroniandcheese,youhavefedyourfamilyanddinnerisdoneandyouarewinningasamom.ThereisamemethathasbeenfloatingaroundtheinternetandIveseentwoorthreedifferentversionsofitandit,ithitsmehard.Itisapictureofayoungmanonhiskneeproposingtoayoungwoman.AndthecaptionsaysWillyouagreetodecidewhatsfordinnerandcookuntildeath?Douspartandthatsthatskindofaoneofthosestatementsthatkindthatmakesyoulaughandkindofmakesyouchokeatthesametime.Becausecomingtogetherandcreatingfamilymeansthatyouregoingtohavetocooktogether,butitdoesntmeanthatyouhavetocarrythatburdenalone.Itdoesntmeanthatyourspousecanthelpyousomewaysometime.Itdoesntmeanthatyouhavetocookfromscratcheverynight.Itdoesntmeanthatyouhavetohaveperfectlynutritionallybalancedmealseverynight,butitdoesmeanyouregoingtohavetofigureoutwhatsfordinner.MostofthenightandIhaveasystemforyou.Itisnotone-size-fits-all.ItisadaptableandithelpsyoufigureouthowtomakedinnersworkinyourhomewithrecipesthatworkforyourfamilyandtasteandFoods,whetheryouvegotfood,allergies,pickyeaters.Ifyouvegotkidsthatlikestuffedpeppers,thatitwillhelpyou.Putstuffedpeppers.Ifyouarelikeme,andmykidsarenotgoingtotouchastuffedpepperwithaten-footpole.Itsgone.Workforyou.ThenexttwoweeksaregoingtobeveryplayepisodesandImgoingtotalkaboutvacationplanningbecausetheworldisstartingtoopenupalittlebitandIthinkalotofusarereadytogetoutofDodgeandtakealittlebitofavacationsoImgoingtotalkaboutfoodplanningonvacationonacoupleofReplayepisodes.In3weeks,ImgoingtocomebackandImgoingtostarttalkingalittlebitmoreaboutthefeed,yourfamilytonightsystemandhowitcanmaketheburdenoffeedingyourfamilyonaweeknightjustalittlebiteasier.Itisstillgoingtobeworth.Ahundredpercentdinnerisalwaysgoingtobeajob.Ifyoucanremovetheexpectationofhavingitbeperfect.Andremovetheexpectationofenjoyingeveryminuteoffeedingyourfamily.Itsgoingtobesomucheasierwhendinnergetsalittletoughbecause,youknow,thatthatsjustpartofwhatyoudo.ItskindoflikewhenItellmykidsthatsometimestheresthingstheydontwanttodoandImlikeyouMymydearfriendwastalkingaboutherchildren,whoworkatachickenfarm,hersonwhoisabouttobeasophomoreincollegesays,Imalwaysgoingtothinkthateveryjobfortherestofmylifeisbetterthanworkingatthechickenfarmandthatandthatsagoodlessontoteachyourchildrensaid.Sometimesyoujusthavetosuckitupandworkthehardjob.SometimesyouhavetodothethingsthatareeasyandImnotgoingtosaythatdinneristhisbigdrudgerycuzImnotgoingtobuyintothateitherbecauseIdontthinkithastobeadrudgeryandImheretohelpyoumakeitalittlebiteasier.Butifyoureoneofthosepeople,thatfeelslike,dinnerishard,knowthatyoureokay.Andthatsokay.AndImheretohelpsober.Now,friends,Ihopeyouarehavingagreatweek.IhopeyoudohavealittlebitofjoyandfeedingyourfamilythisweekforItaly,connectingwiththematthedinnertable.Youhavegotthis.Takecare.

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