Welcome to the KingZoo and Funny Farm, where we learn to live, laugh, and love together. Here you'll find snippets of life in our zoo, parenting tips we've learned along the way, reflections on shining God's light in this world, passions in the realm of orphan care, and our journey as parents of a visually impaired child with sensory processing disorder. Have fun!

Friday, February 27, 2015

If you can't lick 'em...

There are several mysteries of life that I will never understand.

At what age does one transition from doing everything possible to avoid a nap or bedtime, to craving sleep?

Where do all of our missing socks go?

If it is a 50/50 chance that a child will get the shoes on the right feet, why are the shoes on the wrong feet 90% of the time?

If moms and dads have never bitten someone to solve a problem, yet children learn by modeling, why do so many children go through a biting stage?

And finally, what is so bad about the end pieces in a loaf of bread?

This one had me stumped and quite frankly, finding a solution has surely taken years off my life.

We went through the phase when no one wanted to eat the ends of the bread. It would not be unusual to find 6 bags of bread in the drawer, each with only 1 or 2 pieces of bread. Yes, the dreaded crusts.

Discussing the wastefulness of this situation did help and the older children in the home stepped up their game, sucked it up, took one for the team, and chose to help me out of my home economics funk. If they opened the drawer to find that they had lost the load ends lottery, they would take their turn and eat that slice of bread.

But there were still a few children who so vehemently hated those ends that they wanted to claim a food allergy.

Good try. Gluten free bread has ends, too.

So I put on my detective hat and did some sleuthing.

Because of the different times that children wake up in the morning and because some children make lunches and some buy lunches and others eat at home, the proof just fell right into my proverbial lap.

But then I learned something else. Not only do I have one child who despises the crusts of the bread, this child abhors the crusts of bread. This child is so repelled by even the thought of having to eat the crust of the bread that this child will not leave the crust in the bag for the next person but will throw the remaining few pieces in the trash so that this person will not even have the chance of getting stuck with that crust the following day, either.

In case you had any doubts, the King family is not rolling in the dough (get it?) and clearly this child's solution, while making sense in this child's brain, was not nor will ever be an adult-sanctioned solution. But since this child decided not to take responsibility for the throwing out of the bread, and since this child's adherence to the "Please Take Your Turn and Eat the End If It Is the Next in Line" rule was determinably an impossibility, it was time for a totally brand-new tactic.

The plan just came to me one day. You know, if you can't lick 'em, join 'em. Well, I wasn't about to start throwing away perfectly good food (brown potato chips, green Skittles, the non-marshmallow parts of Lucky Charms, or even the crusts of bread) so instead I decided to remove it. Don't make them eat it. Just give them end-free loaves of bread.

I bet you noticed that my kids were happier these past few weeks, right? Especially the child who finds turn-taking with loaf ends to be entirely intolerable. Because no one had to eat the ends. Everyone was entitled to the same end-free slices of bread. Everyday. For weeks. And the best part? No one noticed! They were all just so happy to be crustless. Although, if my mom's childhood mantra is right, they are losing out on future chest hair. But that's neither here nor there so forget it.

Now, for all you who are wondering how I could possibly bring myself to waste those ends, you obviously don't know me very well. I am the one who rewashes plasticware and cups. I am the one who makes my children use both sides of the index card before throwing it away. I am the one who washes baggies and reuses them (except when The Good Doctor throws them away when I'm not looking). So each and every end piece went into an old bread bag (get it, not even wasting a new baggie!) and into the freezer. When the bread bag was full, we had French Toast.

And I waited. I didn't have to wait long. A few minutes into the meal someone commented on having the end piece.

"Funny you should mention that. Look around you. You'll notice that everyone has an end piece. And every piece remaining on the serving dish is a crust.

(At this point all forks were frozen midway between table and mouth. Chewing was slow and deliberate and all eyes were on me.)

Let me tell you a little story..."

And the best part? The child who used to throw the crusts away and then lie about it? Almost gave it away and spilled the truth in an attempt to justify the action. The mouth opened. The mouth closed. The face grimaced. The mouth opened again. A few unintelligible sounds came out. The mouth closed. Because at the last second, said child realized that an opening of the mouth at this time would not only be an admission of truth to the parental figures but would also reveal the identify of the person who caused this meal of crust-only French Toast.

Looks like we'll be having French Toast, grilled cheese, and egg casserole every few weeks around here from now on....


  1. To this day, I still call the ends the "emergency slices," to be eaten when you can't get to the store in time to get a new loaf. But just the same, I do not throw them away. I find that they are acceptable as toast. -LesW.

  2. LOVE finding ways to out smart them!