How To Make Leftovers The Most Exciting Thing Ever For A Child

Leftovers are boring.

Like, historically boring.

The prospect of eating leftovers for dinner on any night but especially on a FRIDAY NIGHT! is akin to watching grass grow, paint dry, and the 2015 Phillies at the plate. We’re talking supreme, turn it up to 11 level of boring when it comes to leftovers. But leftovers don’t have to be boring, as proved by my mad genius 8-year-old daughter this week. They can be, dare I say, exciting. This isn’t an April Fool’s gag. I’m for realsy serious.

With a rather simple idea (aren’t the best ideas always the simplest ones?) the Mouse made leftovers the most exciting thing ever. Here’s how, as originally told (with some edits) on Instragram:

How To Make Leftovers Exciting

My youngest daughter had this stellar idea on Monday night.

She suggested to me that on Thursday, after dinner, while mom and sis are at Girl Scourts, we make up a menu using all the lunch and dinner leftovers from the week that was (a week in which I actually cooked every night: Bangers & Mash, Stuffed Shells & Salad, Pork Tenderloin & Rice, Chicken Parm) and play restaurant on Friday evening. Sounded cool to me. Let’s do it, kid.

So last night we went through the fridge together as she scribbled notes in shorthand (bangers, eggs, quinoa, lettuce, etc). Then she flipped open mom’s laptop and typed up a menu (pictured), including a boss restaurant name. She printed two copies, one for mom and one for her big sister, and hid them.

Tonight, she’ll be the waitress and I’ll be the chef, and I cannot even tell you how excited she’s been all week and was this morning, now that the day of the night of the grand opening of the International House of Hodgepodge has finally arrived. She’s excited about leftovers. Sure, leftovers put through a game she invented on the fly, but leftovers nonetheless. Leftovers are fun and have become exciting because leftovers are the conduit by which she can have fun. Simply, right?

I dare say that the concept of leftovers for dinner has never been so exciting for a child and all it took was a simple yet clever idea from the mind of a most clever 8-year-old child. I’m thinking/hoping this will be a rad thing to repeat although some weeks, I’m not gonna lie, the menu at The International House of Hodgepodge may feature nothing more than:

Bagels, not sure what varieties are left, probably only the one no one likes but for some reason dad keeps buying

Cereal, all kinds and never a bad choice morning noon or night

Ummm, there might be a piece of cold pizza left in the fridge from last weekend

That lettuce is probably more brown than green

Those potatoes have limbs

Screw it, who wants to go out to eat?


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