Thursday, January 29, 2009

The diet of a Kindergartner

The Monkey doesn't eat.

Okay, that's a bit drastic. What I meant to say is, he survives on very little. More like water and air.

Okay, exaggerating again.

He will only eat a few things. God help you if you try and get him to eat something he doesn't like or has never even tried before. When he does eat, it takes forever.

Hubby blames me for his pickiness, but I only cook what I like so it's not like he can see me refusing to eat something. So, where is he learning it from?

I know this is supposed to be some sort of weird, cosmic, karma. But really, I know how picky I am, I don't need to be reminded of how annoying it is to others by giving me the pickiest child on the planet. Anyway, if I'm so incredibly picky why won't he eat what I've got on my plate?

I say it's genetic.

Hubby will eat anything you put in front of him - as long as it's not liver, or has nuts in it (for some reason he counts coconuts - why?).

I've always been a picky eater. The evil people who raised me always used to make fun of how picky I was (fun times) - they, like Hubby, will eat anything. So, where did I learn it from? Again, I'm resorting to genetics.

I didn't come up with this conclusion until a year and a half ago when I was in Kansas visiting with my biological mother. The first night we were there we went out to eat at a Mexican restaurant. My biological mother ordered first. What Hubby and I heard was enough to have us both laughing as silently as possible behind our menu's. It was like listening to something I would order..."I would like this, but could I have it with this instead of that, with some extra of that other thing on the side?". Just picture Meg Ryan's character in When Harry Met Sally, and that's what it was like (erm, what I'm like). It was very comical.

Great! Now I know why the Monkey and I are they way we are when it comes to food. Unfortunately, it doesn't help with the nightly battles we have over what he is going to eat.

Here is the complete list of what he will willingly eat without a fight:

Cheese tortellini in alfredo sauce
Mac 'n Cheese (Kraft or Annie's, definitely not homemade)
Spaghetti with meat sauce (just my homemade meat sauce, forget about taking him out to eat anywhere else and ordering that)
Plain spaghetti with butter & parmesan cheese
Peanut butter and honey sandwiches (cut into quarters) - He's better than me here, he doesn't care what kind of bread his sandwiches are made on as long as it doesn't have twigs (his word - I think it's intended to describe multigrain type breads)
Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (cut into quarters)
Cheese sandwiches (that's it, just cheese. No mayo, butter, or god forbid we offer to grill it. Just plain please).
Fish sticks
Pizza (maybe - depends on the kind)
Cheese Bread (pizza dough with cheese)
Oatmeal (instant maple flavored - that's it)
Most sugary children's cereal
Ice Cream (any and all kinds)
McDonald's Cheeseburgers (without anything else on it)
Apples (peeled & cut-up)
Most puddings
Chicken nuggets/chicken fingers
Scrambled eggs
Pancakes, preferably chocolate chip

That's it. No veggies, no fruit. He adores milk, and would have buckets of that for dinner if we let him.

We might be able to convince him (with some bribing) to eat:

Taco's - don't be fooled with this one. He won't eat taco's put together like taco's. Everything has to be separate. So he has to eat a bite of meat (seasoned ground beef), a bite of cheese, a (miniscule) bite of lettuce, a bite of taco (flour or corn, he doesn't mind)
Green beans - this really depends on what's for dessert.

He will not, under any circumstances, eat anything made out of potato's. He also will not eat, no matter what you bribe him with, hot dogs. What kid doesn't eat fries or hot dogs? Mine.

Some nights, when we don't feel like fighting, he'll go to bed without dinner. Not because we want to punish him, but because it's his choice on whether or not he wants to eat what is in front of him. Other nights, when we don't feel like fighting, I'll make something that I know he loves just to avoid the conflict. Hubby and I refuse to make a separate meal for him, and maybe that's what we're doing wrong.

I don't want to jinx it, but so far the Chipmunk is doing much better (and faster) than his brother. He'll eat any food we put in his mouth as long as it's pureed to an itty, bitty pulp. I'm hoping it continues this way - the eating whatever we put in front of him, not the pureeing to the itty bitty pulpiness. I guess he takes after Hubby. Now, if the Chipmunk doesn't want a bottle at the exact moment you are offering it to him, that's a different story.

So, what am I supposed to do about the Monkey. I want to be able to put something in front of him and be done. If he eats it, great! If not, it doesn't matter. But it does matter. If he doesn't eat he starts misbehaving. I don't want to have to bribe him to eat. It's so frustrating. Hubby isn't helping either. He'll start yelling at the Monkey if he doesn't do what he wants him to do. I don't like that approach either.

Any suggestions?

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