Does this sound familiar? You get home from picking up your CSA box or visiting your local farm/farmers market, and you are overwhelmed with the amount of produce that needs to be cleaned and prepped for the week to come. It's not like the stuff comes shrink-wrapped from a store shelf! At least I feel that way every time I come home with my veggies! It is so easy to have the kids go play or distract them with something else so you can get through all that work as quickly as possible, but don't do it! It's amazing what little kids can do!
My daughter has been helping me with my weekly produce prep since she turned three. She is great at helping with herbs like parsley, cilantro, and basil. She also loves taking the tops off cherry tomatoes and shucking corn! Sure the process goes a lot slower than if I did it on my own, but it has so many advantages! It is a wonderful time to talk and learn together. She gets very excited about the vegetables and is more willing to try them when she has a hand in preparing them.
Even though you have so much to do (and never enough time to do it in), give your young children the chance to be involved in the kitchen. It will end up being a cherished memory for the both of you!