Lentil Salad for a Hungry Caterpillar

IMG_0798My little love had the tantrum of her nearly three-year old life recently.  The setting was Barnes and Nobles.  I don’t know what I was thinking.  Rows of colorful books and toys, all within grabbing distance.  The caffeine infused air.  Oh, and the Eric Carle display complete with Hungry Caterpillar cookies.  We’ve always loved Eric Carle books, but it will be a while before we are able to snuggle up with The Very Hungry Caterpillar again.

IMG_0795To make a long and terrifying story short, our quick trip to the book store culminated in two tiny hands frantically grabbing cookies  and shoving them into her mouth as fast as she could.  Naturally, I ended up leaving our intended purchases on the floor and paying for a ridiculous number of cookies, all while holding a screaming, PLANKING IN MY ARMS toddler.  I didn’t know it was possible to sweat so profusely so quickly, and I’m pretty sure there was a point at which I was actually praying out loud for the strength to carry her while trying to wrench my wallet from my purse.

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Just when I thought the earth was going to swallow us whole, you know,  as I was attempting to simultaneously back through the exit while avoiding bumping any part of her flailing body against the door frame, that I got the encouraging “I’ve been there before you can do it” nod and wink from another woman passing by.  This beautiful woman’s non-judgment and her sisterly compassion reminded me that there would be a point in the future when I would laugh about, and probably miss, the possessed cookie mongering days of my daughter’s toddlerhood.IMG_0797

As the three-year mark approaches I am sad and excited.  I’m looking forward to what this next phase of our lives holds and what new adventures her inquisitive nature will challenge me with.  Above all, I am so proud of the little person that she is developing into.

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A few hours after her tantrum subsided she was sitting in her pink chair, eating a snack, and sniffling now and then.  Exhausted, I was standing over the kitchen sink eating peanut butter and crackers when I heard her little voice say                                                            “I’m sorry mommy”.

IMG_0800I thought oh, she probably spilled something so I told her it was okay.  Then she turns to look at me, and very seriously, with that special mixture of honesty and sweetness that only a child possesses repeated, “I’m sorry for throwing a cookie fit. I love you”.

 

I melt every time I recall that moment.  The cookie fit was wellIMG_0801 worth that precious milestone in both of our lives.  That evening, to balance out the sugar cookie blast, we made lentil chickpea salad.  This recipe is fantastic for the summer as it’s delicious hot or cold, and the lemon and mint add a refreshing twist.  I also love that it’s quick and easy to prepare, which was exactly what we needed after our emotional day.  And it tasted great the next day over a bed of greens for lunch!

 

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