Things I Said I’d Never Do

In addition to TV, disposable diapers, and anything Disney, we can add one more thing to that ever-growing list of promises broken:

  • Give him his own food if he doesn’t like what we’re eating

I said, to myself, "Our child will be open to all kinds of foods and there is no way I’m making that processed crap just to get him through dinner." I mean, you’d think a toddler would be thrilled with last night’s supper of broiled salmon, brown rice, and steamed asparagus served in a lemon/garlic vinaigrette, but not ours, apparently. Fortunately, he will sit and eat an entire box of blueberries if we let him so the blueberry producers of Quebec (and, ok, elsewhere) will be happy to know he’s keeping them in business for another year.

I thought it was a matter of perseverance but I guess that, week after week of being worn down by "NOOOOOO!!!", it’s a relief to see him happily chowing down peanut butter and jam sandwiches cut to look like dinosaurs.

There are several factors that influence a child’s eating habits: parents, peer group, mass media, etc. None of these, however, will be as influential as the 38 minute PowerPoint presentation I’m going to produce about the health benefits of a diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables in which I’ll droningly read bullet points that he can easily read himself.

I figure after sitting through one presentation, I can just threaten to make him watch it every time he doesn’t eat his vegetables.


5 thoughts on “Things I Said I’d Never Do

  1. Caving happens and happens fairly often. That’s not to say it’s bad.

    I had hoped to create a tradition of watching nature shows on Friday evenings, but we’re started watching The Biggest Loser instead. It’s not the best, but it’s not necessarily bad either.

  2. Ha. It all comes down to this, doesn’t it? Parents ideals slowly degrading over time. We’ve had mostly the same broken promises. I’m going with ‘pick your battles’. Some days it’s just not worth the struggle.

    If, though, the whole food thing is something you want to change, and you haven’t yet heard of Ellyn Satter, go check this out (esp. the division of responsibility part):

    We go by most of her suggestions, and honestly, it just makes my life easier.

    I usually try to put my own version of the ‘4 food groups’ on L’s plate: Something he’ll definitely eat (usually bread or pasta or rice), something he might eat (usually the main course, meat, fish etc.), something he definitely won’t eat (usually the veggie) and milk.

    It varies from day to day. Some days he only eats the starch. And of course there are the days that he insists on ‘i keys’ (ice cream) for dinner. But I can see slowly that he’s warming up to veggies in different forms.

    Of course that’s not to say that we don’t have nights that we cave or opt for the easy way out. Cheerios & milk for dinner anyone?

    • Thanks for the link. That’s not too far from what I’d like to do. I like the comment about not wanting to end up a short order cook for the kid. I understand some battles will need to be picked (tonight’s spaghetti so that’s a win).

      Fortunately, there are some food items that he’ll happily eat like berries and fruit and, for some reason this week, President’s Choice Granola.

      My other plan is to have his grandmother present at all mealtimes because that’s when he’ll eat beets.

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