Sarah’s College Kitchen

Before the Move

Well, to recap: we were at 30 days of Sarah departing for college when I went on strike in the kitchen. What that means is I wasn’t grocery shopping or cooking. Although Sarah grew up cooking in our home, she was not ever responsible for all parts of the process. When she was younger I had a specific knife I let the kids chop with. As she grew so did the knives.

The reason for my strike was that I needed Sarah to really understand all that went into the various meals we ate.

Shopping those last few days before actual departure provided Sarah with some eye-opening thoughts about her planning as well. Time was what kept coming up.

“Mom, how am I going to have time to do this?”

My suggestion was that she figure out what would be her top 10 go-to meals in college. Getting this list out of her was like pulling teeth. She finally got it together, shopped, chopped, cooked and place in containers that were microwave safe disposable and labeled. Then we packed them on dry ice in coolers, then in a U-Haul truck. And now her freezer was ready and filled with food to reheat and eat.

Sarah Cooking

Some of the items that Sarah wanted to eat and cook were:

Hard-boiled eggs
Spaghetti pie
Turkey meatballs
Turkey burgers
Chicken meatballs
Chicken burgers
Boneless chicken filets marinated and sealed up, ready to cook for salads or as an entrée with rice and a steamed vegetable
Easy grab-and-go sandwiches

On campus Sarah will have an apartment with a kitchen, refrigerator and freezer, microwave and stove. And she will have a roommate.

Sarah’s first grocery list/pantry has now been expanded to include:


Paper towels
Cleaning supplies
Dish soap and soap for the dishwasher
Laundry soap
Broom and dustpan
Sponges and abrasive pot scrubbing pads
Lysol wipes
Saran wrap
Parchment paper
Various sizes of self-sealing plastic bags
Small lunch box size food containers and freezer packs


Moving Day

The actual move into the dorm, overall, went very well. We had packed boxes that would stack on top of each other, that were not too heavy, and that would fit onto the cart the university loaned us.

The first part of the move (after getting there) was cleaning and deciding where things would go. So we cleaned and wiped down the inside of the cabinets, drawers, refrigerator and oven.

Don’t Eat My Food!

Next was deciding where everything was going to go. The easiest decision was to put the frozen meals in their containers in the freezer. But then, because Todd, her brother who came to help, and I were there for a week, her next fear was that we would eat up all her frozen meals because we were working so hard and fast and didn’t want to stop what we were doing, leave the dorm and eat at a restaurant.

“Don’t eat any of my meals,” she pleaded, “or I will have less when you leave!.”

She suddenly realized that food was gold. I assured her that I would make something to replace the meals that we ate.

We tested the oven and the electric burners, also the temperature in the freezer and fridge. Everything was in good working order. But we needed a trash can that could recycle as well as hold trash. Sarah‘s roommate Kayla found that.

Sarah claimed one side of the food cabinet for her gluten-free foods and a section of the fridge. She talked to Kayla about cross-contamination and Kayla was not only very receptive but delightful (lucky for Sarah).


Au Revoir but not Adieu

The French have two ways of saying “goodbye”: Adieu, which means farewell or goodbye and sounds very final. And then there is Au revoir, which means to meet again.

At the end of the week we said au revoir to dear Sarah and got in the car to drive back home. We know that this week Sarah has begun rowing practice and that she is scheduled to meet with dietitians on campus.

Right now Sarah and I are taking it day by day and continuing to learn how to manage this challenge. Stay tuned for the challenges and hopefully solutions of the next few months!




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