What is in the Cabinets?!


I am a picky eater. I announce it proudly and without shame….eggs, milk, cheese, bread, butter, ranch dressing, mustard, broccoli, peas, mushroom, etc. The list goes on…and on… on.

Looking back, I feel so bad for my mom. Every breakfast, lunch, and dinner she made just never seemed to work for me. Thus, resulting in her having to cook a whole second meal for her “picky” child.

My mom would make this just awful concoction of my absolute most despised foods…bread, with butter, and cinnamon. The cinnamon was the only decent part of the “snack” she would force me to eat. “No swimming until you finish all of your snack,” she would say. My older sister would eat it up of course, convincing my mom that it was delicious which made it seem as if I was just being overdramatic…overdramatic? Me?

Luckily, my older sister and I would often “enjoy” our snacks perched on stools beside the large island in our kitchen that featured large, deep, oak cabinets both above and below the counter top…it was here when my brilliant six year old self came up with the very best plan…

Waiting until my mom had left the room, I carefully broke up the disgusting snack that pervaded my plate and wrapped it tightly within a napkin…checking over my shoulder to make sure no one was in sight, I carefully, and quietly, opened the back of a cabinet that was rarely used and inserted the napkin-making sure to shove it out of sight in between two abandoned pots.

I anxiously called to my mom to show her my “empty” plate…I was clearly ready to go swimming. I remember just waiting for my mom to open up the cabinet and call me out on my, “good try.” But she didn’t notice…and so this brilliant plan of mine went on for several weeks…until she began to do some end of summer cleaning.

Walking in from a busy afternoon of playing outside, I noticed dozens of napkins littering the floor. “Uh-oh,” I remember thinking…My mom just sat there looking from me to the napkins and back to me. “Are these yours?!” she asked, not really wanting me to answer. I shrugged, “I toooooooold you I hated that snack, but you didn’t listen. So, I hid it.” My mom couldn’t stop laughing as tears sprang to her eyes and she snuck a peak into the napkins. “Gross,” she cried out, “I can’t believe this is what you’ve been doing with your food!”

Happy to see I was clearly not in trouble, I joined in as I filled her in on which meals just were not making the cut. We then reached an understanding…my dislikes were real, not dramatized like my sister Kelli hinted at so frequently, and in return for no longer hiding food in the cabinets, my mom would stop making me eat bread, with butter, and cinnamon on top.

I wish I could say that this was the last “cabinet” issue we had…unfortunately for me, my list of dislikes kept growing, and you could frequently hear my mom yell out, “What is in the Cabinets?!”


6 responses »

  1. What a fun memory from your childhood!!! It’s so funny how “the sister” turns into the villain. I hope you read this one to your students. I think they could really relate to it!!

  2. Too funny! Creative little kid you were. I couldn’t wait to hear what your mom said when she found your secret hiding spot. So neat that she laughed and listened! Thanks for sharing!

  3. So funny! I too am a picky eater so I totally feel your pain! I wish so badly that I could “change” my habits, but I just can’t….

  4. What a great memory. I loved your story. I have a friend who hates bread. When he was little he poked a hole in the drywall in his bedroom closet. He would sneak bread from his plate, tear it up and put it in the hole. I can only imagine what was living/snacking in the wall!

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