I don't know if it was my husband being gone for a week or the inspiration of Farmer Boy by Laura Engels Wilder, or the late night reading of a certain crazy health blog. Maybe it was just the perfect storm. Whatever the case, an untouched plate of tortellini and broccoli was the last straw.
The kids have been driving both hubs and I nuts for about their food pickiness for years, but I kept thinking it was going to get better if we just persevered. Their pickiness is not the cause of some serious health or mental issue, and it's not so serious that they can't eat good food- it's just that they won't unless there is non stop coaxing/threatening/rewarding or fork feeding involved. Dinner time is utterly exhausting for my husband and I. It's pretty ridiculous when a two and five year old would rather be fed by an adult than pick up their own fork and eat what's in front of them. Whatever happened to having an appetite for food- real food? Not just for chicken nuggets, pizza, french fries, and sometimes spaghetti. It's not a healthy appetite if they only eat these processed, nutrient stripped foods willing. This just can't be normal!
So after "persevering" for years with no signs of improvement, I decide something else needed to change. I realize that this is probably my fault they don't eat well. Not that I haven't tried every trick in the book! But it has to be something that I did or didn't do, since most other kids I know have healthy appetites and eat the food that's front of them. Sure, everyone has a few foods they don't like, but with my kids, it's almost every healthy meal! I don't know if kids through out all of history have ever had a problem with eating the food's that given to them until the dawn of processed foods. It seems that this is sudden epedemic that is baffeling many parents now. There has to be a reason and my hunch is that convience foods are spoiling our kids' appetites.
My husband is a huge relief in this food battle and without him at the table, I just feed the kids whatever is quickest and most convient so they eat without a hassle. So that means for breakfast and lunch, my kids get all their favorite foods. Pancakes, scrambled eggs with cheese on toast, oatmeal, cereal (sometimes all in the same meal since concessions were always made for each child). Then for lunch it's a PB sandwhich, ham and cheese sandwhich, chicken nuggets, grilled cheese sandwhich or tortilla stuffed with cheese and beans. The only meal of the day I will not give them what they want is dinner. Does this sound like it might be part of the problem? It does to me.
Stay tuned for part 2 of Project Detox...