How to Raise a Vegetarian
Seriously, do not ask me.
Yes, I am a vegetarian. And I was 12 when I decided meat wasn't for me. And I did live in a small town that grew soybeans but had never heard of soymilk - in a state that prides itself on having a population of 14-15 million hogs and only 3 million people.
But I don't believe in forcing my views on anyone ...including my daughter. She was a vego for the first year of her life - if you don't count the fish oil tablets I choked down to give her more/stronger/genius brain cells (and do not tell me otherwise). We weaned her on beans and nuts and dairy.
And then, she reached an age where she was curious about the (obviously very yummy) stuff that Daddy was eating. She began to devour salmon. And I do not use the word devour lightly. Which was great, because I was no longer providing her with fish-induced intelligence ... and I'd done a lot of hard work building up those brain cells.
But it didn't stop there. Then she was curious about the other things that Daddy ate - the things that he gobbled down voraciously. So she tried lamb. And beef. And turkey.
And sausage - which she tasted, spat out and called 'evil'. (That's my girl!!)
My little vegetarian has turned out to be very carnivorous. A lover of lightly-cooked, full-flavoured meats and seafoods.
And we're fine with that. After all, she is who she is. Our only stipulation is that she knows where the meat comes from. Which means, of course, that we get 'baaaaaa' when lamb is served, and 'moooooo' when beef is served ...
I know she doesn't really understand how meat comes into being. She's only 3. Shall we take a field trip to the abattoir? (ooh! please, Mummy!) I think not. But we'll keep learning. And living with compassion. And being grateful and not wasteful of the food that ends up on our plates, and in our bellies, and nourishes us.
So, that's how you raise a non-vegetarian. To raise a vegetarian, you must feed your child ample amounts of overcooked meat and then let her read PETA literature when she's at a formative age. (or, at least, that's how I became one)
PS. Love the apron? Robbie got it for me at a thrift store ... it instructs the wearer on what parts of the steer are to be used for each cut of beef - and what each cut is good for. Appropriate, hey? You can find other thrifty finds here.