When this project came to me, the only goal I really had was to see if I could trick my dad in to doing things MY way for a week. That was a quick victory because after only about 3 minutes of prodding, he agreed. That's when I decided maybe I could have more fun with this than I thought.
After thinking it over, I realized one of my primary goals is to show my dad that eating REAL food can be a delicious, filling, lovely thing. I'm a person that needs a meal to "stick to my ribs" to make me feel full. That is from years of eating processed food, huge "American" sized portions, and being told as a kid to eat everything on my plate (which I do tell to my kids, I say "make a happy plate!" but their food choices are a lot better than mine were when I was a kid). The temporary "full" feeling you get from processed foods becomes a comforting, familiar feeling. That is why, I think, it can be so intimidating to change your eating habits.
At first I was stressing about a few things. 1- the cost of healthy food. My parents still have two kids at home, teenage boys, that eat a LOT. They also have my niece Phoenix at home- she doesn't eat much but her diapers aren't cheap and either is baby formula. Oh... and with teenage boys comes their friends... they also eat a lot. 2- the availability of organic food. Then I started thinking.. baby steps. Let me get my dad to EAT vegetables and fruit. I'll find what I can organic (Walmart is really the only option for groceries, except the occasional little melon stand on the side of the road during the summer), and just let the habit form naturally. Who knows.. maybe I'll really change his attitude and he and my mom will grow their own small garden next year (ha, yeah, right).
Once I figured out my goals for this "project" ... I became a lot more excited. I mean, not only am I, the child, educating the parent- but I am also encouraging my dad to be healthy. And by him making the effort, who knows how much longer that could add on to his life. I try not to be a worrier, but that is something I worry about often- losing my loved ones.
I have been cooking a little while I'm at my dads (I have been bouncing around from my dad's to my grandparents' trying to visit everyone as much as possible). I thought I would try to get a quote from my dad for this blog post... but this random text message says way more than some prompted quote ever could. :)