Recently my microwave broke and it was the greatest thing. It has taken away unhealthy convenience food and allowed me to spend time preparing healthy meals for my family because I had no alternative!
New Mom Does Not Equal Home Cooking
As a relatively new mom, I am still learning how to cook and multitask while caring for a baby. Now that my daughter is crawling and standing, cooking is often interrupted by a little baby standing up against my legs and whining to be included and picked up. This can be difficult if I am browning meat or have oil in a pan or am chopping veggies. It just interrupts the flow of cooking.
Because of this, I had fallen into the habit of quick meals. For lunch, I might heat up taquitos, chimichangas, ramen, and whatever else I bought that I could microwave. This habit extended into making food for my daughter, I would buy steam vegetable bags over raw vegetables. There’s nothing wrong with that but I stopped preparing most food in our house. Especially since up to 4 nights out of the week I may not cook a “meal” for dinner because I was just me eating, as Isaac works nights and Jo would already be in bed.
Then our microwave broke.
It started smoking and burning bowls and food. We quickly stopped using it and trashed it. And for no reason, I delayed buying a new one.
My microwave breaking was the best blessing for my health and my families health.
When I went to make lunch and couldn’t quickly pop something in the microwave and hustle back to the living room before Jocelyn noticed I was gone, I started cooking again.
Habits Changed & Mealtimes Improved
I went grocery shopping and bought almost zero processed foods! And amazingly we have used everything. Bunches of produce didn’t go bad, chicken didn’t sit in the fridge and not get cooked before it needed to be tossed. I finally figured out that the allure of quick cooking was too much for me. And by requiring me to use the oven and stove I have started cooking for every meal again.
I cook myself and Jo breakfast every day, sometimes it’s just waffles and other days it’s eggs, and fruit, and bacon, and avocado toast. When I make lunch, I can heat up leftovers in the oven or often saute veggies or make a sandwich or salad.
The biggest change has been at dinner time. I am planning my meals out when I go to the grocery store, so I’m avoiding wasting food and I can wake up knowing what I will be making for dinner and that I have all of the ingredients. Jocelyn is getting to try different dinners (when it’s a quick enough dinner that’s done before her bedtime) and I am really enjoying cooking for my family. I am also now cooking about 5 nights a week (the other nights are usually leftovers).
No More Microwaves in this House
Let me tell you, I already feel better. I’m already making way better-eating choices. I am spending less money at the grocery store and on eating out. I’m learning new recipes and have found some keepers! I have quit my diet coke habit cold turkey, which I’d been trying to kick for months with no success!
So think hard about what you use your microwave for. It might seem really silly but the convenience lured me in and allowed me to create bad habits instead of learning to cook while watching my daughter. Does it help you deliver healthy meals to your family or is it filling your tummy and your children’s tummies with high-sodium processed foods that we are all better off avoiding?
I only wish my microwave had broken sooner and I will not be buying another one.