What Twelve Thousand Dollars Of Chemistry Classes Will Buy You

Aug 21, 2010

#Life#Getting to know me#The Flinger Family

We are making homemade ice cream today. It’s part of my clean eating movement. I involve the children so they feel empowered to create their own food.

I feel proud and motherly.

We mix the ingredients and begin to poor the solution in to the ice cream maker but I notice the sugar isn’t dissolving. “What’‘s dissolve mean, Mom?” my oldest asks. Something from 1996 and my chemistry minor comes bubbling to the surface.


I’m suddenly a chemist!

“Well, see, that’s a good question, honey. There are bonds in the sugar molecules so they remain solid in this liquid here, see?” I show them the grainy bits in the bottom of the bowl. They look disinterested at best.

“What happens is,” I ignore their faces of disgust, “the bonds need heat to release them so the sugar will…” I pause to find the right word, my son plays with his penis in his pull-up, my daughter tries to eat the ends of her hair. I’m trying not to use the word dissolve while explaining what dissolve is… “So the sugar will melt, sort of, in the liquid.”

“That’s why I’m putting the solution, the mixture of liquid we just created, over heat in this pot even though we’re going to freeze it in the ice cream maker,” I conclude.

My children look as if they’ve aged seventeen years while listening to me lecture. They stare at me. I smile back.

“Can we have a Popsicle while we wait, mom?” they ask. Yes, Fine Fine, Fine. They scream in enthusiasm and run out the door. I yell after them, “Do you want to know how a Popsicle is made?!”

They don’t.


  1. Next time you make ice cream you can try this
    then your kids can play soccer while they’re waiting for it to freeze smile

    By Danielle on 2010 08 21

  2. Haha!  Yes, this came in handy when I was suddenly confronted with a “birds and the bees” type question that I was not prepared to explain on the way to preschool…certainly without my morning caffeine.  A lengthy description involving cells, fertilization, blastulas, zygotes and embryos solved that problem.  Long winded scientific explanations and young kids?  It’s akin to vampires “glamoring” humans!

    By jeanne on 2010 08 21

  3. Dissolve means to melt in liquid, the end.  Lol. I have an entire arsenal of these easy explanations courtesy of my sister and her having been a parent first. You should have heard what I told my 5 year old nephew when he asked me how babies get out of “the vagina” I about had a heart attack. My sister’s mantra is “keep it simple, stupid” haha. And her son is going to complete 2 yrs of algebra before graduating HS and was coding in C++ at age 12 so it didn’t hinder him any!

    By shari on 2010 08 27