A week ago my seven year old looked at me calmly and announced "I want to try eating vegetarian for a while."
This has come out of left field.
We are a meat-eating family. Beef, pork, chicken, fish - Easter weekend I even roasted a leg of lamb, for god's sake. (I wasn't crazy about it, but the lamb biryani I made with the leftovers was fabulous.) We've tried duck, rabbit, deer. We do our best to buy locally-raised meat and we have always explained to our kids where bacon comes from and how it's important to us that the animals we consume were raised happily and slaughtered humanely.
Seven year old says this isn't an ethical issue; he's just curious about vegetarian food. OKAY THEN. We agreed that for now anyway he'd continue to eat what the family does for dinner, because it just doesn't make practical sense to cook separate meals for him. He's fine with that, but basically what it means is that I can't send any meat in his lunch anymore. Remember back a few weeks ago when I complained about making a zillion ham and cheese sandwiches? BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR.
So this has thrown a small wrinkle into lunch packing around here, because my middle son is still and forever dedicated to meat. Suddenly my nice assembly-line lunch making has been thrown out of whack, a little bit.
We've had lots of hummus & whole wheat pita, cut-up vegetables, fresh fruit, hard-boiled eggs (Easter weekend and your supply of eggs, I thank thee), pancakes... suggestions, anyone? Seriously, I'm new to this - yes, I was a vegetarian for eight years, but with the clarity of my grown-up eyes I can see that I was a really bad vegetarian. (It was really a socially-acceptable way to justify horribly disordered eating, frankly.)
Oh, and he has expressed an interest in lentils, of all things. LENTILS. Please, internet - give me some lentil recipes that don't taste like hippies.