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Grandmother's Too Spicey Thanksgiving Meal

By Jodie Lynn


Every Thanksgiving we travel to my husbands mom's house. Our three kids do not like anything she cooks, which is Cajun, and are really beginning to complain. How should I approach her about this without making her feel bad or upsetting her?


Apparently, it is a holiday tradition to go to grandma's house for Thanksgiving. It's once a year. Talk to your kids and just go and be happy. She may not even be here much longer. Be thankful you have a loving place to go and keep your mouth shut. - T. D. in San Diego, CA


My family and I lived in Louisiana for six years and I know firsthand that although Cajun food can be quite spicy, it's really yummy. However, if you only eat it once a year, it can taste a tad hot for some adults and certainly for many children. While cooking a Thanksgiving feast is certainly no small task, especially for an older individual who may have a few more aches and pains than most of us, I am sure that the kids' grandmother would welcome a little help from people who gather at her house for this holiday meal. Most of us would like an extra pair of hands in preparing the food or for guests to bring already prepared side dishes. Maybe you could bring a couple of dishes that your own kids enjoy eating and make enough for everyone. If others enjoy them as well, perhaps contribute a new one each year. Talk with your husband's mom and see how she may feel about this. Some people are not open to any type of change in their normal holiday menu, while others are more than happy to try new things. If she is opposed, the other option would be to possibly have your children eat a small meal before the family actually arrives at grandmother's house. That way, their tummies will be sort of full but not so much that they can't try a few bites of her food. Remember, one day you might be in this same situation, so think things through and try not to make a big deal about it... after all, it's only once a year and for only one meal, which most likely has been made with lots of love.

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It's that time of year again when I will be taking my kids to the mall to let them shop. However, it never fails that it will be jam-packed with people. My kids want to walk ahead of me, I guess because it's not cool to be seen with mom in tow, but it scares me. Any ideas on keeping track of them and hopefully within eyesight too?

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© Jodie Lynn
Jodie Lynn is an award-winning internationally syndicated family/health columnist and radio personality. Her syndicated column Parent to Parent has been successful for over 10 years and appears in newspapers, magazines, newsletters and throughout the Internet. She is a regular contributor to several sites including,,,,, and Lynn has written four books and contributed to three others, one of which was on Oprah and has appeared on NBC in a three month parenting segment. Her latest books are "Mom CEO (Chief Everything Officer) - Having, Doing and Surviving It All!" (June 2006) and "Syndication Secrets - What No One Will Tell You!" (March 2006).
Please visit for details on her new radio talk show, Inside Parenting Success.


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