Before: “Yuck. If you make them, I’ll just eat nothing.”

After: “Oh, they’re goooood!”

He didn’t have a choice. I didn’t have buns. Or hotdogs for that matter. Trying to teach him that sometimes we’ve just got to learn to work with what we’ve got.

I don’t often put my foot down in the food arena. If he doesn’t want something there are always other options. It’s just the way we roll. I feel like I’ve had to fight battles on so many other fronts, I’m just plain tired when it comes to the food fight.

I’ve engaged more recently – he’s getting older and I’m trying to introduce more veggies, but again, I’ll admit, I’m pretty lax.

My pushes tend to be soft, like going to a new restaurant where I know they’ll have food that he likes. His focus is so much on the newness of the unknown destination and his anxiety-anticipation builds…well, it makes the ordeal easier for us if there are French fries on the menu.

Tonight, I just didn’t have it in me. I knew what we had in the house (and didn’t have), and I knew that I wasn’t going out to buy anything additional. Funds are tight and I’m sticking to the budget. And energy is way low (the meter is reading: EXHAUSTED), so wasn’t planning on an extra errand to my afternoon schedule.

Momma’s got nothing for you kid.

“What’s for dinner?” he asked.

“I’m making mini cheeseburgers, like roll-ups.”

“But I don’t want that.”

No lie. It was a whine.

“Okay.” I responded matter-of-factly.

“Is there anything else?”

A fair question.

“Not tonight.”

Aghast, he responds, “We have no more food?!”

Calmly and without reservation I answer, “We have other food. I’m just not making anything else. These will taste just like cheeseburgers, which you love.”

Nothing but grumbles from the peanut gallery.

I place in front of him the leftovers from his after-school snack. (Because I’m not heartless – or wasteful.) I also take out the ketchup and place it on the table close to his space, because I know he’s going to want it.

These cheeseburger roll-ups were made grown-up style.Out of the oven, I dollop mine with sour cream and chopped Roma tomatoes. I point to a plain one and ask him, “Would you like to try one?”

“Yes.” He responds heavily, resigned.

He picks at it and asks, “Will there be more when I finish this one?”

“Yes, honey. There’s a whole pan. I’m not going to eat them by myself.”