Simon's Family Life Merit Badge Project

One of the awesome things Simon has been into the last few years is Boy Scouts. He started later than many of the boys in his troop but it has really been an excellent experience for him. Chris has spearheaded most of these adventures - attending meetings and often going on outings with him and taking the time to help him get organized.  

For one of his Family Life Merit Badge requirements (a family project) he decided to plan out seven freezer meals for our family. 

Here's what he decided to prep: 

I helped him locate some possible meal ideas on Pinterest and then he narrowed them down to the choices above and compiled a list of all the ingredients he would need to make these seven meals before heading to the store. 

After we got home, and after his hour of screen time, we got down to business. 

We started with the three breakfast recipes. Those were the ones he seemed most excited about and I was excited that he was excited. 

Some of you have been around long enough to remember when eating a variety of foods was a big issue for Simon (check out my archive of Simon stories here). These days he eats pretty much everything - which is amazing and awesome and man am I thankful for that evolution. There are things he likes less (like noodles and soup) but he will eat it if that’s what's offered.

He’s been really into breakfast sandwiches this past year and for awhile we were buying some from Costco until they stopped carrying them. We started with this recipe because that seemed to be the easiest and the one that he could really feel some accomplishment about. We doubled the recipe to end up with 12 instead of 6 (as you can imagine with so many kids around here those will go fast).

I can totally see making these again. I loved the technique for baking the eggs in round ramikins - so easy and simple. Totally a game changer for this kind of batch cooking. 

After the eggs were baked and cooled he assembled them with a slice of cheese + Canadian bacon and then individually wrapped each one before putting them into a larger freezer bag. 

Next we moved on to cooking the sausage for both the other breakfast recipes and doing the work for the breakfast burritos (another food he generally enjoys). He dealt with all the eggs (cracking and scrambling) and I helped with some of the chopping. 

After that point he got tired and asked to go take a nap. 

We were at a good stopping point where the filling for the burritos was complete and the casserole was ready to be baked so I cleaned up while he took a nap. 

When Aaron and I chatted about it later he suggested just bagging up the burrito filling into individual servings that could be warmed up and added to tortillas vs. freezing them in the tortillas (which is what the recipe says). Loved that idea so the next day Simon scooped out individual servings of the breakfast burrito filling and put them in the freezer. He made one today and it worked out great to just heat up the filling and then wrap it in a tortilla. 

For dinner that night I decided to just make the Tropical Chicken Meatloaf vs. doing it as a freezer meal so we need to add something else to his list. 

Splitting this up into a couple sessions made it much more reasonable adventure for him. The dinners were almost easier - except the meatballs which were messier and he's not always a fan of having his hands in the that kind of texture. He cut up chicken and I chopped some veggies. He bagged up the rest of the meals and it was all good to go. 

This adventure was so worth it. It's great for him to see that you can do this kind of batch cooking and have it quick and easy to grab later on. It was helpful for me because we now have meals in the freezer that can just be pulled out and put into the crockpot. Looking forward to doing this again something soon (the breakfast sandwiches are already gone of course) with his help and/or inviting another kid to participate and select the meals we put together. 

Highly recommend this adventure with kids. 

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22 thoughts

  1. hgauvin says…
    09/12/2018

    That's just so awesome! I've been around long enough that I remember the eating issues...and the long sleeve shirt issues. I see that has resolved as well. Go Simon Go!

    Reply 0 Replies
  2. scrappychick says…
    09/12/2018

    Go, Simon, Go!

    Reply 0 Replies
  3. mtercha says…
    09/12/2018

    That's awesome! I've taught my boys to cook, simple things mostly, meatloaf, tacos, chicken, and am starting on my daughter. I think it's an awesome skill to have going forward. I'm glad Simon is getting so much out of his time in scouts. That's great. Michelle t

    Reply 0 Replies
  4. Bookworm says…
    09/12/2018

    That's so awesome! Congratulations to Simon on gaining skills in this arena.

    Reply 0 Replies
  5. bookemper says…
    09/12/2018

    This is so great! Go Simon Go!

    Reply 0 Replies
  6. paulette1980 says…
    09/12/2018

    so good Ali ! Go Simon go!

    Reply 0 Replies
  7. SusanBowers says…
    09/12/2018

    Both my boys were in Scouts and earned Eagle. I love seeing Simon's investment of time and effort he puts into his merit badges - which lead to making rank, but more importantly the life lessons are just phenomenal. My grandson, he's 11, has autism and I've noticed the transition from the struggle to eat different foods to pretty much eating everything. He may still not like it but he eats it anyway. And, last, egg cups (in a muffin pan) are great for a make-ahead breakfast! Oh, and can I just say I am LOVING all your stories!!!

    Reply 0 Replies
  8. barefootscrapbooker says…
    09/12/2018

    What a great choice of activity to benefit the whole family, and also a great choice for meals! Go Simon!

    Reply 0 Replies
  9. ltpet says…
    09/12/2018

    I love to bake eggs in a tart pan or large muffin tins. With the right pan, the eggs end up being the same size as the English Muffin :) hooray for make ahead meals! Great job Simon!

    Reply 0 Replies
  10. virginiegoujon says…
    09/12/2018

    So awesome! Cooking with kids is so fun. Love doing this.
    GO SIMON GO!

    Reply 0 Replies
  11. ScrappinMyHeartOut says…
    09/12/2018

    Simon, I love the meal choices you ended up with - great variety and all sound so tasty!

    Reply 0 Replies
  12. Bec_ says…
    09/12/2018

    I am definitely going to check out the recipes. I really enjoyed seeing these photos and reading about his cooking. Seems like only yesterday he was a little boy. My age is showing. WTG, Simon!

    Reply 0 Replies
  13. meldarcy says…
    09/12/2018

    I'm not keen on raw meats on my hands either so I find standard food handling gloves work a treat when I'm mixing and shaping meatballs or rissoles. They're pretty readily available and make the job so much more pleasant :) gosimongo though!!

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      09/12/2018

      That's a great idea! I will suggest that to him in the future.

  14. ADriggs says…
    09/12/2018

    I've been a scout leader for 13 years and it teaches the BEST LIFE SKILLS! Bravo to you and yours for jumping in and doing it! Proud mom to an Eagle, a Boy Scout and a Cub Scout too! :)

    Reply 0 Replies
  15. jscales915 says…
    09/12/2018

    Go Simon Go! Love to see his evolution & progression - such a sweet boy!

    Reply 0 Replies
  16. gina200 says…
    09/12/2018

    Love this story Ali. I love the life skills he’s learning!

    Reply 0 Replies
  17. Farrbo says…
    09/13/2018

    Loved reading this and so excited for Simon. Go, Simon, Go!! :-)

    Reply 0 Replies
  18. robyn_karsten says…
    09/13/2018

    I've been collecting meals the kids can help out with (and like) and we'll definitely be checking those breakfast sandwich's out!!!
    I'm also loving all the old school story telling you've been doing lately. I didn't realize how much I missed these everyday stories like you used to do on our blog.

    Reply 0 Replies
  19. Islandgirl says…
    09/13/2018

    Love how we get to teach our kids life skills. Love how we are a part of their learning. There is something really special about cooking together. Simon will never forget this lesson in life and that you supported him through it. This could be your THING. What is really special is Simon chose the recipes so in future you can say "hey Simon can you make those great ......" Yeah you two.

    Reply 0 Replies
  20. EAugustin says…
    09/15/2018

    and now I'm hungry! GO Simon GO... All the recipes looks SO Good. I love that idea of batch making I need to start doing that around here w/a family of 6 it is a MAD house in the AM as my kids are from College Junior to Kindergartener and everyone is on different schedules but being able to just grab and go is a YES!! Thank you so much for sharing. Simon YOU ARE AMAZING!!!

    Reply 0 Replies
  21. Rahul0504 says…
    01/02/2019
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