So sick of food around here!!!

incognitomomJune 3, 2011

We finally got over the issue of my ss sneaking junk food in the middle of the night. We grounded him from desserts and junk for 2 weeks. That meant no soda if we were at a restaurant, no treat in his lunch, no dessert at night when others were having it, no candy on Easter, etc. We have not had any issues with it since. The whole time we also banned him from snacking in between meals. He was eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner without any problems :)

Well now my husband is back to letting him constantly snack and we are having trouble getting him to eat dinner. SS comes home from school and wants a snack. I have always said if the kids are hungry in between meals they should have some fruit or veggies to snack on. But dh has been letting them have whatever they want (hot dogs, PB&J sandwiches, chips, etc) and I am having problems with nobody being hungry at dinner. I have asked dh to stop doing this and go back to fruits and veggies.

Yesterday around 4 ss is hungry. Dh tells him to go ahead and get something to eat. SS makes a PB&J sandwich and gets a pickle!!! I pull dh aside after and tell him I am not ok with this because its like a meal to a kid ss's age and I am about to cook dinner!!! A little while later (when dinner is almost done) sd walks into the kitchen and makes herself a PB&J. I ask her who said she could eat that now and she says nobody, but ss had one. She was right so I did not stop her.

I went and told dh I am no longer going to bother cooking dinners if he is going to let the kids make meals as snacks. He got angry and said this is home and the kids should feel comfortable in their home and eat what they want. I said they are kids and need our guidance when it comes to food. I told him I am going back to ONLY fruits and veggies between meals and if he does not support me I am no longer cooking dinners.

Last night I made shish-ka-bobs with steak, onions, green peppers, and pineapple. The kids love these usually, but sd and ss were full at dinner time and barely ate. Hmmmm...wonder why!

After that dh agreed we can go back to only fruits and veggies for snacks. LOL

Did I mention I am sick of food issues????

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"I told him I am going back to ONLY fruits and veggies between meals and if he does not support me I am no longer cooking dinners."

Good for you!! Way to put your foot down. Looks like your hubby got the point.

My 5 year old was the same way. I didn't realize I was letting her snack too much before dinner and when dinner came she didn't want to eat. My boyfriend pointed it out to me. I stopped letting her snack before dinner and she started eating all of her food at dinner time. What a surprize, LOL!

    Bookmark   June 3, 2011 at 10:00AM
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My husband just drives me crazy with food! It might be a eurpoean thing because his parents were not born here....but everything with his family centers around food! We will go to visit them right after eating a meal and right away my mother in law is trying to offer food. If I say we are good, we just ate then she goes over me and starts listing foods to the kids asking them which they want. If they say they are full she keeps on them until someone agrees to eat something!

It got to the point where my younger sd would just keep eating and eating at mother in laws to the point where she got stomach aches or vomited. My mother in law saw nothing wrong with it. When my mother in law would watch the kids over night she would make hot dogs for the kids to eat right before bed as a "snack". It drove me crazy but hubby never would say anything to her.

We had big food issues with younger sd for a while because of it because she would eat and eat and everyone in dh's family commented on what a "good eater" she was. Meanwhile she was really packing on the pounds, which was totally unhealthy but none of them seemed bothered by it. It took a few years to get dh on board with me and for him to tell his mom no when the kids did not need to eat again. Of course now I am the evil one because my mother in law will make comments like "is it ok for me to give the kids something to eat?" but in a different tone than usual.

I am not miss thin....I am overweight. But I try to make good food choices for us all and keep the kids active in sports or just playing outside. And I feel like dh and his family are totally working against this!

    Bookmark   June 3, 2011 at 10:18AM
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I have the same issues with my SK's eat what seems like full meals after school ... at 3ish dinner's at 5ish "not hungry" but they want dessert and to eat again at bedtime!!!

I buy fruits and yogurts little snacks nah they don't want that ... they want 2 sandwiches chips pickles, cans of soup, panini's, 2+ bowls of cereal...(since SD's chip episode I ceased buying any snacks)

I work the nights they are here most of the time so I make dinner ahead of time but I stopped making dinner for a month ... told hubby no sense making dinner for them if they have already eaten by 4pm they had dinner I would make enough for the 2 of us ... but I was mean I made their favorites but not enough for them to have any since they had already eaten dinner they didn't need the dinner I made ... and well SD she isn't allowed any snacks unless she clears it with me after the 11 bags of chips episode ... she now eats dinner with the family.

Make PB&J for dinner a few nights a week lol :)

Years ago ... the kids complained about everything I made for dinner ... no clue why ... they just didnt want anything I would make ... so for the longest time I made hamburgers every night hubby and I would have real meals and they had hamburgers different sides but but it was hamburgers every night.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2011 at 10:43AM
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This may or may not work for your family, but it's been a success here.
SS12 has a bin in the pantry. I stock it each weekend. He can take whatever he wants from it, whenever he wants between after breakfast and 8pm. I put in small containers of nuts, gummy candies, raisins, etc, a couple granola bars and a couple of fruit cups. There's also a few "coupons" for a piece of toast and a cheese n crackers. If we have chips, there's a ziploc of chips. I put in only as much junk food as I'm cool with him having over the course of the week. He can also have as many fruits and vegetables as he wants, from after breakfast until 8pm.

He almost always goes straight to the bin after school, but he grabs a small container of peanuts or raisins or jelly beans instead of making two huge peanut butter sandwiches or something. Sometimes he then asks for some fruit or vegetables. Sometimes he goes back to grab one more thing from his bin. But he never snacks on enough to ruin his supper anymore!

He gets a bit of junk food, so he doesn't feel deprived. He gets some autonomy over his snacks, but not free reign to demolish my pantry and gorge on pickles 30 minutes before a meal. He doesn't pester me for a snack every 25 minutes anymore.
It's win-win for us.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2011 at 11:35AM
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Throw out the peanut butter & the jelly & the chips & put your foot down with your husband (or on him?)-

"you bring one single junk food item into this house & I quit;
you get to handle the whole food shebang, shopping, storing, planning, cooking, cleaning up. Think before you act because this isn't negotiable & you don't get a do-over."

& do it.

At the first crunch of a Frito, walk out of that kitchen, put up your feet, & read a book.

I my own self am a grazer, always have been;
the sight of a huge plate of food, unless it's pasta, sometimes turns me off.

Is it possible that SS is a grazer, too?

(I do think Ceph's method makes a huge amount of sense.)

    Bookmark   June 3, 2011 at 3:07PM
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Sylvia I have no issue with "grazing". The kids can graze on healthy snacks till their hearts are content. I don't give them heaping helpings at dinner. But when I slave away in the kitchen making a dinner and nobody wants to eat a bite I get mad. Especially when a while later they want "snacks" again!

Last weekend ss slept over at a friends house. The mom told me she made waffles in the moring but ss and his friend said they were not hungry. A while later she caught ss going into her snack cabinet with her son and grabbing snacks. She stopped them and said if you are not hungry for breakfast you are not hungry for snacks. So when ss came home a little while later he right away told me he was hungry for a snack. My reply:well you were not hungry for breakfast so I guess in about an hour when its lunch time you will be hungry enough to eat. No snacks! He ate lunch without an issue that day :)

I love Ceph's idea....but with 4 kids in the house I am not sure how I would manage to make sure they stay in their own snack bins. I have a feeling someone would be sneaking stuff they liked out of other people's bins. And then I would be back to being the food nazi and watching everyone's every move in the kitchen.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2011 at 3:52PM
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incognito, what you described could be cultural in regards to when you are visiting someone else's house it is rude to refuse food, and when you have visitors it is rude not to offer food no matter if they are hungry or not. Both I and SO weren't born in the US (come from completelly different coultures and continents yet our families share the same rules when it coems to guests and food).

But these rules do not apply to your own household, kids do not eat unhealthy snacks and people aren't continously eating. In fact food consumption is way higher in the US than anywhere else in the world. Especially when it comes to salty fatty snacks and portion sizes.

So I think your MIL offering foods to every guest is cultural (you are a bad dishonorable host if people don't taste at least something). But your husband allowing kids to eat snacks is just a guilty parenting.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2011 at 3:59PM
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Good point po1.

We had this problem with my son and MY Dh. Dh brings DS home about 530 every day and dd and I dont come in until almost 6. Well DS was having 'snack' at daycare at 3 and really wants to be eating dinner right about 6. Well.... I am not about to walk in the door at 6 after commuting two hours per day, and working 9 hours.. And start cooking dinner in my heels. I need to change clothes and potty and get my hair out of my face but I walk from the garage through the kitchen to enter our house and it never failed, DS is standing in the kitchen crying he is hungry.. Dh started giving him 'snacks' to get him satisfied so that when I get home I could walk in in peace and take my 5 minutes to unravel, cool down and recollect. BUT then DS would NOT eat dinner at 7. I don't like having dinner at 7. Dd tells me that at BD's they eat dinner at 530 so she is really screwed up with our different schedules. I don't deal with a hungry dd at 830 though because she eats dinner and she is full for the rest of the night. So... We have yet to work out a plan but Dh stopped giving DS 'snacks' and started offering an apple or banana and if he doesnt want that then he isn't hungry.

If your Dh isn't on board (sounds like he sees the problem now though) then you may ( like some have suggested AND my own therapist suggested this) let Dh be in charge of meals. My Dh cooks three times a week. I don't care what he cooks but it's his job to start it and finish it from planning to serving. This also helped our relationship because I get those three days to relax a bit longer and on the days that it's my turn (mostly weekends, Monday's and Wednesdays) I just hustle to get home and get started because I know tomorrow, I get to take it easy. Still can't get DS to eat much but we are working on it.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2011 at 4:36PM
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Myfam have you thought about using Sunday or another evening to make two dinners that you can freeze or refridgerate so that on your dinner duty days you just have to heat them up? Or maybe doing a crock pot type meal on your days sometimes?

I know when I was working full-time I dreaded getting home from work because it was a rush to help kids with homework and make dinner and do all that stuff.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2011 at 7:41PM
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Myfam, I hear you. That's a good plan Inc.

What is with kids and snacks? Where did snacks come from? When I was a kid, we had a fruit bowl. That was "snack food". There was no such thing as snack packs at our house.I don't get how we've come to this as a society.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2011 at 9:47PM
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That is a good plan. I'll try that on Sunday for next week. I can make two meals and freeze until the day of. I'm actually so excited, that I have a new plan! Lol I have a crock pot but don't use it much -- I'll research some recipes and try that out. Thanks!

    Bookmark   June 3, 2011 at 11:19PM
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I think we already had a thread about something like that. i remember my opinion was not very popular, but i still think that the way to make kids not to eat snacks is not to buy them. I don't have much will power when it comes to certain things so i don't buy them. No snack, no issue. eat an apple, don't want to? then you are not hungry. I don't think not eating snacks/junk means being deprived. And if they eat peanut butter all the time, don't buy it. I have never bought Peanut Butter, it is not even that good for you. I actually can't stand it. I love chips, but am not buying them. Don't buy chips. End of story. And if they are hungry of an hour, not a big deal.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 11:28AM
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"the way to make kids not to eat snacks is not to buy them."

Amen, Sistah!

& the way to guarantee that kids will eat junk is to bring it home.

Deidre, my best friend in junior high & high school, was overweight & miserable.

Her mother worked at a bakery & brought home eclairs & cakes & pies & all kinds of stuff *every day*, & of course it was too much for a child to resist.

Today, Deidre is slim as a reed & you will not find pastry in her house.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 12:51PM
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"I don't have much will power when it comes to certain things so i don't buy them."

totally agree! We almost NEVER have chips/junk food in the house because a) I don't want the kids eating them and (more importantly) b) I don't want myself eating them!

We have an unlimited rule on fruits/veggies for snacks. DD and SS both know they don't even have to ask, they can have fruit or veggies ANYTIME, between meals, whenever. I keep a fruit bowl stocked with apples, bananas and oranges. We almost always have baby carrots, blueberries and grapes in the fridge

They can have stuff like that anytime.

As for snacks, then I have the "sometimes" ones that they have to ask about: pretzels, bagels, baked snack crackers, etc.

I let them have something like that when they get home from school--3:45 pm---because we don't typically eat dinner until about 6 pm. But that's it---ONE after school snack. (But like I said, fruits/veggies don't count, they can eat those anytime.)

And incognitomom, I totally agree a PB&J sandwich is a MEAL, not a snack!

I will sometimes toast a bagel and spread some lowfat cream cheese on it and give it to the kids to split for a snack.

Ceph's idea is a really good one.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 1:46PM
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I have to disagree that peanut butter isn't good for us. It's around 30% protein and has a lot of important vitamins. Almond butter is better, and for sure watch the brand and ingredients (to avoid palm oil).

Some peanut butter on celery or a tablespoon with some apple slices is a perfectly good snack.

I do agree not to keep 'snack food' in the house if there are issues with it. DD will come home and eat endamame or a quesadilla and I find that's perfectly acceptable, because she will eat a full meal later. So it really depends on the kid too.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 2:34PM
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PB has enormous fat content, there are other sources of protein and vitamin out there, tablespoon is OK but when we are talking about sandwich it sounds petty bad to me.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 2:54PM
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Yeah, I meant to say that about peanut butter, too.

We buy an organic, natural brand----no sugar added, the kind with the oil on top that you have to mix in. It's healthy in moderation.

As for PB& J, I buy the Simply Fruit jelly---no sugar added.

Natural peanut butter, simply fruit jelly on whole wheat bread = a healthy sandwich IMO.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 2:55PM
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We're going to have to agree to disagree. Peanut butter is high in fat, but it's GOOD fat, fat that is necessary for brain development.

Harvard Health, and Livestrong as well as CNN agree that it's a healthy part of a good diet.

It provides fiber, is good for the heart, and has been shown to lower cholesterol. It has vitamin E and niacin and those who are into working out know that a banana and peanut butter after a workout help rebuild muscles and provide important nutrients. It's pretty close to a superfood, and for picky kids it's a great source of fiber and vitamins. Combined with whole grain bread, there's not many snacks a person can eat that would be better for them.

A tablespoon or two is the serving size, there should be no reason to put more on a sandwich.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 3:23PM
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"A tablespoon or two is the serving size, there should be no reason to put more on a sandwich."


    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 3:31PM
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There are of course worse foods than peanut butter, but since it has such high calories and fat content, I would be very careful in serving it to kids on a regular basis especially taking in consideration number of overweight children/adults. As any processed food with high calorie and fat content it is something to be careful about.

Lovehadley, you are right organic kind sounds way better.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 3:43PM
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I buy organic too, the kind you have to mix.

Peanut butter is a whole food. I don't think anyone is obese from eating too much of it. More likely that comes from eating white bread, sugar jelly, etc etc.

Cheese is also processed, has high calories and fat.

I doubt there is any kid who would eat so much peanut butter they'd be overweight as a result. It's a good part of a healthy diet. Nuts are great for kids in moderation, as anything. I see no need to be careful with peanut butter unless there is an allergy.

Dr. Sears actually recommends parents feed children peanut butter on toast for breakfast as an alternative for picky eaters who don't prefer cereal. It's better nutritionally, and longer lasting, than oatmeal.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 4:55PM
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    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 5:28PM
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My kids don't like jelly because they are texture kids... Certain foods make them gag, jelly being one. But... They love pb.. Dd likes to get a spoon full and eat on it. Grosses me out but it doesn't keep her from eating dinner. If I had problems with her, I would probably not allow such a filling snack. But I do agree pb on celery or with sliced apples is a good snack.
My dad has a pb sandwich every day. Very healthy man... He eats JIFF extra creamy lol Whoever said that people who work out know to eat bananas and pb after a work out. That is exactly when he has his pb, after his daily work out.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 5:39PM
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"But I do agree pb on celery or with sliced apples is a good snack"

Yep. SS is a picky eater and finding fruits he likes is a difficult task. He will eat oranges, sometimes bananas, but that's about it.

One thing he has always enjoyed snacking on is apple slices with peanut butter. I'm not a big fan (love each separately, just not together!) but SS and DD both eat that sometimes.

I think PB gets a bad rap, as do nuts in general, just because of the high fat content. What some people don't understand is that it's a good fat. Same as the fat in avocados or salmon.

Fat isn't a *bad word* nor is the word calories, either. I just had a conversation with DD about this. She had heard somewhere that calories are bad, and I tried to explain that calories are actually ENERGY. Our bodies need a certain amount of calories a day to live and be healthy. I explained that as long as we are burning----via excercise or just moving around---more calories than we're taking in, it's fine.

My dad always says if you run five miles a day, you can eat whatever you want.

Pretty true within reason!

I am also a big believer in the more active/healthy we are, the less our bodies CRAVE junk.

But even junk *on occasion* is not a bad thing. There is a Mexican restaurant DH and the kids and I LOVE, and every other Saturday or so, we will go there and ENJOY---chips, salsa, tacos, burriots, quesadillas, oodles of sour cream and sauces and all that.

Or sometimes instead we'll go out on a Sat or Sun morning for a big breakfast---I actually prefer THAT because I a) know that I'll burn off most of that throughout the day and b) if I eat a big meal early, I find I'm not hungry for the rest of the day.

I think a big thing is teaching kids to enjoy meals as a way we socialize and spend time with loved ones. Teaching them to eat slowly and enjoy the food rather than just shoveling it in and waiting for the next one is important, too.

I think so often----I notice this allll the time with my own kids----we eat out of boredom.

"I'm hungryyyyyy" in between meals is often code for "I'm booooooored" in our house.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 6:10PM
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LH said ""I'm hungryyyyyy" in between meals is often code for "I'm booooooored" in our house."


We like junk food. Chips are enjoyed about once a week in our house. A few gummy candies or some chocolate covered peanuts are enjoyed almost daily.
But we share the bag of chips and it's a small handful of candies.

Junk food is out there. Junk food is advertised in print, on the radio, on TV, and on the internet.
I think my job is to teach the kids moderation and balance about food, not to demonize or revere any one food or group of foods.

I'm also very cautious about my language about food. Junk food is not called a "treat." It isn't spoken of as special, nor is it forbidden. It's just another food, but one that isn't good for you, so you should only have a little.

I limit SS's junk intake, because it can make him pretty squirrelly, but it's allowed in moderation.
Caffeine is the exception. We don't let him have caffeine with us because it's a DISASTER for him.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 7:19PM
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ohhh Love, that's a hard one. How to tell our daughters that calories and fat are *good* for us, how to make sure they have a good relationship with food.

Nothing wrong with fat, and *they* are actually revising the findings that low-fat is better than full fat. Fat is so important. It's the fillers that are killing us and making us fat, not the fat.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 7:53PM
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It seems that people on this forum often complain about their kids eating unhealthy or snacking nonstop or overeating or being very picky eaters or just simply have issues with food. I think it must be a common problem.

Fats, proteins, carbs are all needed for proper nutrition and chips/candy is not a big deal either IF there is no see above issues. Other than that I don't think it is wise to stuff one's pantry with whatever is there and then complain about kids having food issues, or feed your kids everything that Internet says is good.

If a child stuffs himself daily with peanut butter sandwiches all afternoon and then refuses to eat anything else I don't think it is wise to keep doing it just because Internet says it is good.

I think too many people do not give much thought to what they eat and especially what they feed their children. Food is a nutrition and a social thing as well as cultural but too often food becomes a problem, an issue, a struggle..And I believe parents are to blame.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2011 at 8:50PM
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PO1, I have to say, when I posted links stating the nutritional benefits of peanut butter it wasn't "Internet" saying that PB is good. It's respected, reputable nutritionists and doctors. For a lot of kids who are picky eaters PB is a really important part of their diet.

The reason I'm continuing with this is I feel you are misinformed and I'd hate for a mother to read your post and stop feeding her child peanut butter as a result. There have been tests that show when PB is incorporated in a healthy diet it can actually lead to weight loss, and nuts help to prevent Alzheimers.

That doesn't mean allowing a child to "stuff himself daily with peanut butter sandwiches" is good. There is a middle ground here.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2011 at 2:01PM
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silvers I think you misunderstood what was the issue discussed. Child/children overeat on snacks including making themselves peanut butter sandwiches right before dinner and then not being hungry. That's the issue addressed. The issue was not health benefits or picky eaters or nutritional content of anything. I think you misread. "But dh has been letting them have whatever they want (hot dogs, PB&J sandwiches, chips, etc) and I am having problems with nobody being hungry at dinner. I have asked dh to stop doing this and go back to fruits and veggies."

I personally offered a solution. I could also post about nutritional content of various products but it would not address or solve the issue at hand. I would hate for a mother to read your posts and assume that it is OK to overeat on whatever easy to make or grab from a pantry and then not eat dinner just because peanut butter has nutritional value. So I think you misunderstood the whole point.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2011 at 6:39PM
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no PO1 you just "blamed the parents"

PB is better than nothing

if they are eating PB they don't need dinner it has enough nutrients in it.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2011 at 1:00AM
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I am extremely hypoglycemic and have been told by my endocrinologist to have peanut butter on hand with me. It's high enough in protein to pick me up. There are times when my blood sugar is sooooo low that I simply grab a spoon and eat some peanut butter. This is not necessarily what I LIKE to do, it's what I have to do. AND.... this was told to me by my Dr. And No.... I don't eat spoonfull after spoonfull. I eat enough to not pass out then I eat a good dinner. My husband is usually the cook at my house and sometimes I get dreadfully low right as he's getting it ready but not soon enough.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2011 at 10:30AM
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SS loves peanut butter sandwiches (but not with jelly), and he's very thin. SS has always had food issues; for him, it's a control thing. When he is anxious, unhappy or stressed he seems to insist upon his "safe" foods - otherwise he simply won't eat. At all. A PB sandwich on wheat bread with a glass of milk is a lot better than nothing. No, it's not as "good" as what we serve for dinner - but at least it's something reasonably healthy which he'll eat.

Pediatrician says he's perfectly healthy, weight-wise - but every year we get form letters from the school nurse about how he's outside the "average" BMI. This year irked me particularly because it said he was in the lowest 5% BMI average for kids his age. Um, so? Perhaps the nurse is unfamiliar with how percentiles work, and that since almost one-third of kids his age are now obese or overweight, the percentiles for kids who are at a non-overweight weight are skewed.

(If you remove the top-third [overweight and obese] percentiles of kids, a child who is in the "60th percentile" of average BMI's, which sounds perfectly reasonable and, well, close to "average", suddenly jumps to the 90th percentile of non-overweight kids, and thus their parents might want to keep a casual eye on their weight. Although my math may be wrong so please correct me if it is.)

    Bookmark   June 7, 2011 at 11:26AM
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No, PO1, I didn't "misread" or "misunderstand". The issue was not health benefits until you started bashing peanut butter.

When I corrected you based on generally accepted nutritional standards you continued your personal opinion about peanut butter and insinuated that parents shouldn't believe what I am saying (or "Internet" is saying) because Peanut Butter is "not that good for you"... "enormous fat content... pretty bad"... "high calories...considering obesity...something to be careful about".

You are entitled to your opinion about peanut butter but it is nutritionally incorrect. I think it is you who does not understand.

Posted by parent_of_one (My Page) on Sat, Jun 4, 11 at 11:28
"I have never bought Peanut Butter, it is not even that good for you. "

Posted by parent_of_one (My Page) on Sat, Jun 4, 11 at 14:54
"PB has enormous fat content, there are other sources of protein and vitamin out there, tablespoon is OK but when we are talking about sandwich it sounds petty bad to me."

Posted by parent_of_one (My Page) on Sat, Jun 4, 11 at 15:43
"There are of course worse foods than peanut butter, but since it has such high calories and fat content, I would be very careful in serving it to kids on a regular basis especially taking in consideration number of overweight children/adults. As any processed food with high calorie and fat content it is something to be careful about."

    Bookmark   June 7, 2011 at 1:46PM
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Hi Mattie,
My DD is also off the charts for BMI HT/WT. And by off the charts, I mean, not on the charts. She's too little :) I've had doctors and strangers, etc. accuse me of not feeding her, not giving her enough nutrients, offering hormone therapy, etc. It's really absurd to me when people say "DD, you're so little and they're standing by their freakishly large 9 year old chomping on a McMeal.

DD's perfectly normal (at least for our family, we're petite) and when compared to some of the children in her class (who are almost as tall as me and weigh just as much) I just have to shake my head.

DD enjoys peanut butter, almond butter, nuts, etc. on a semi-regular basis although she doesn't particularly like PBJ. She prefers PBH, as do I.

And a PBJ sandwich with a glass of milk is a very wholesome, nutritious lunch. Add some banana and it's practically perfect. Not what I'd want to eat every day, but nutritionally it's pretty sound. It's just as good as a turkey sandwich with cheese(lettuce doesn't have many nutrients to speak of and DD won't eat tomato), especially when you take into account the mayonnaise (fat without much reason).

Last night DD ate a cheeseburger and fries, and three quesadillas from our neighbor (full fat cheddar and queso fresco cheese and homemade corn tortillas). Not the most nutritious meal ever, but the night before she had homemade beef brisket and a big helping of green beans. It all evens out.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2011 at 1:56PM
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Mattie and Silver -- DS is the same. He is under 5% so under they don't even give us a percentage. He is kind of tall for his age but super thin. He is 3 (almost 4) he has to wear size 4 tshirts to cover the top of his pants and look normal but he is still wearing 2T shorts and 3T pants with the waistband fully pulled tight to keep them up. He can't really wear pants because they are too short or too big around the waist.
The dr said she wasn't worried about him because he is sooo active which obviously proves he is getting what he needs to fuel his energy but we did begin vitamins just to make me feel better... He eats constantly. He is just one of those blessed to be super thin and have a high metabolism. Dd is built completely different. She lingers in the 60%. She is very short (the shortest kid in the entire 4th grade). Her short frame makes her look like she carries a lot of weight in her hips which she might but the dr said once she gets a growth spurt in a couple of years (cross fingers) that all should even out.

My doctor told me that if dd starts lingering in the 75 or higher we would need to get concerned about her future risk for obesity. So I do watch her and I enforce a little more outdoor activity than I normally would.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2011 at 3:39PM
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My 11 year old son has always been in the 90% for weight. He went from 25% to 90% for height. That's a very weird thing I think. I really think he'll start to head back down on height. His sperm donor is only 5'6" so I doubt he reaches 6'. Now my 16 year old son is about 6'3" and weighs 144lbs. This kid is in the high percentages for height but only 25% for weight. And that's only because his bones weight something. He looks soooooo thin. People always make comments about that. BUT he eats like a horse... so sometimes it's just how the kid is. Nothing you can do about it.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2011 at 3:40PM
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silvers, I understand you have preferences for peanut butter and it is fine by me, by no means I am implying you should stop feeding your child anything you want (it is funny you assumed some mothers would stop feeding their kids XYZ because PO1 says so here). Especially if your child is underweight you certainly might consider feeding her extra calories. I don't think you should get upset over this. It is really not the end of the world.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2011 at 3:47PM
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PO1, I'm not upset. I'm just correcting the erroneous information you are posting. Some people really have no clue about nutritional value and I think it's a disservice to post opinion as fact.

And I don't need to feed my DD extra calories, she's proportional height to weight and I'm not worried in the least.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2011 at 4:21PM
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momof3, yeah it is interesting, my nephew is also skinny like a stick, he looks undernourished, most certainly it is not the case. He is 6'4", he looks like if you push him, he will fall over so skinny he looks. But neither my brother not my SIL are that tall at all, I mean they aren't short, but certainly not 6'4". It is funny how it works. Who knows how tall your son is going to be? If he is 6'3" at 16, he might grow taller...Wow.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2011 at 6:47PM
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DD went to bed with out dinner last night. She took a look, decided she didn't like, I asked her to taste, she tried one tiny bite and spit it on her plate.

Sorry kid.

I think it was the first time. I felt a little guilty, but part of me knows if she was really hungry she'd eat (and she'd had a banana and peanut butter, at her request, as an afternoon snack) and she told me she ate crackers and ice cream at Hebrew School (weird combo to me... but whatever).

    Bookmark   June 8, 2011 at 3:13PM
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Silver! I almost posted the same thing this morning but didn't want to keep it going but since you did, I'll share also.

DS didn't want dinner last night either. He had three bites. I left his plate out until bath time and then threw it away. I told him that was dinner if he doesnt eat, that's it. He said he didn't want dinner. So when he was going to bed, he threw a fit that he wanted his dinner. I felt a little guilty but felt that I really should stick to my decision. He cried himself to sleep. Awww I felt bad but this Morning he said I am eating my dinner tonight. Lol

    Bookmark   June 8, 2011 at 4:44PM
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OMG more commotion with peanut butter! It has 190-200 calories per two spoons, it is outrageous. It is a meal (with something added to it). If a kid ate that for snack of course she is not eating dinner! And after sweet fatty peanut butter what kid wants to eat anything else, especially somehting healthy? Nutritional value or not, it is a very fatty high calorie food, kid is filled up. I bet you if a kid ate something less filling or fatty for a snack she'd be hungry by dinner time and wouldn't be spitting anything out. This stuff just amazes me!

    Bookmark   June 8, 2011 at 5:34PM
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A child the size of mine should eat around 2000 calories per day. She eats breakfast at 7am, snack at 9 am, lunch at 12pm and gets home at 2:15. Her banana and tablespoon of PB is 200 calories. And those aren't empty calories, they are readily available to her. She ate that at 2:30 pm. Then she went to Hebrew school and was active for two hours and had a small ice cream (100 calories) and some crackers. Dinner after Hebrew school isn't until 7:30pm.

My PB isn't sweet. It's organic, made with only peanuts and salt, and has 100 calories per TBS.

If I put a bowl of pasta or something she really likes in front of her she'd eat a couple of bowls. She had said she was hungry less than an hour before dinner. SO hungry she wanted to stop at In N Out on the way home.

Nope, she wasn't full. She was being picky. She had zero fat with breakfast (oatmeal with fruit), a snack of pretzels (again, no fat), chicken and salad for lunch with cheese (a little fat). I doubt my kid is getting too much fat :)

    Bookmark   June 8, 2011 at 6:59PM
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Sounds pretty damn healthy to me, Silver!

This one time...

I let DD and SS each take a bowl with two spoonfuls of PB (same kind you are talking about---all natural, no sugar, the kind you have to mix up) and they stirred in some jelly. And ate it with a spoon! HA. A PB&J without the bread.

And nobody's fat.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2011 at 7:14PM
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I prefer mine with honey :) I like to stir it all together until it's kind of 'whipped' and then spread a very thin layer on... well... just about anything bread-ish. That sounds pretty good though. Did you eat it before or after dinner?

Today we went to the beach after work. DD brought a friend. I packed veggie straws (from Costco), graham crackers, Capri Sun, pretzels filled with peanut butter. We played hard, ate all of the snacks and the friend had some Cheese-its so they started in on those before I took them away.

When we got back DH asked if we wanted to try the new Chinese place... We had orange chicken, lo-mein with beef, bbq pork with green onions, egg flower soup, sweet and spicy tofu, rice.

DD ate good.

And, I must add, FAT is good. The thought that fat is bad for a person is outdated and incorrect.

Fat supplies essential fatty acids (EFAs). "Your body is incapable of producing the EFAs, known as linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid, so it must derive them from food," explains Wahida Karmally DrPH, RD, professor of nutrition at Columbia University and director of nutrition at The Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research. In addition, fat ferries vitamins A, D, E, and K -- known as the fat-soluble vitamins -- into and around the body. "Fat is also necessary for maintaining healthy skin, and it plays a central role in promoting proper eyesight and brain development in babies and children."

Dietary fat is categorized as saturated or unsaturated. Unsaturated fats -- monounsaturated and polyunsaturated -- should be the dominant type of fat in a balanced diet, because they reduce the risk of clogged arteries.

While foods tend to contain a mixture of fats, monounsaturated fat is the primary fat found in:
olive, canola, and sesame oils
nuts, such as almonds, cashews, and pistachios; peanuts and peanut butter

Polyunsaturated fat is prevalent in:
corn, cottonseed, and safflower oils
sunflower seeds and sunflower oil
flaxseed and flaxseed oil
soybeans and soybean oil

I don't claim to be a nutritionist but I am fairly careful what goes in my DD's body without being a food nazi like my mother was. She gets small portions of snack food (100-200 calories per day) and that's it. Everything else is non-processed and mostly organic.

As an aside, has anyone read Botany of Desire, Food Rules, or In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan? He is a very engaging writer about food and the symbiotic relationship between plants and the animals/humans who eat them.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 1:12AM
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I see we're beating the horse again...

Anyone try Better N Peanut Butter Chocolate? Good stuff. Have not tried the banana one but the niece tells me she loves it on celery.

I think idea of P&B sandwiches as snacks lose favor when one only takes the tradional image into thought. Yeah, big difference between the traditional with two slices of bread which can be as high as 200 calories a slice with added jelly/jams and who really measure the items being added. Thinking along those lines...high calorie/fat snack an hour before dinner and really not even filling. Wasted calories, along with worthless bad habits.

As to the original points in teen's eating times and habits changed as they entered high school and sports and activities. I usually checked calendar (and with kids) as to who would be home when and actually eating family dinners. DH and I had the traditional sit down and the kids rarely joined us except a few times a week. No wasted food, no fighting with kids and no junk pre/post dinner. I also got grocery list from the older kids as to what they needed for their weeks menus. Sure would not work for everybody but for my home with three active teens (one was preteen) it was what worked. Kids made their own meals when they were not sitting down with Dh and myself. Times change, we had to change with them. Now that it's just basically DD, DH and me we're back to the three of us doing traditional family will change as DD11 ages and gets more involved in activities, friends, blah blah.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 11:20AM
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When someone insists on propagating misinformation I take umbrage. I never said a PBJ was a snack or that it would be acceptable for DD to eat that right before dinner. I agree with OP completely on that one.

I get it that when people think of PBJ they think sugar-laden PB, sugar-laden jelly, sugar-laden white bread. That puts it almost in the "sweet treat" arena rather than the "sustenance" ring.

But even wonder bread only has 130 calories for two slices and 4g of sugar. Compare that to Oroweat Oatnut bread at 130 calories and 4g for one slice. One needs to read labels and compare carefully. Appearances can be deceiving. I'd say the bread is probably worse than the PB on most occasions.

****One could also, using PO1's logic, say that chicken is bad for a person. After all, it's full of antibiotics, fried, served with mashed potatoes from a box which are smothered with gravy from a packet and a white roll with margarine on the side.***

Eating anything an hour before dinner, besides a very small, 100 calorie-tide-you-over snack is a bad idea. I rarely give DD anything in the hours before dinner.

So that's not the point. The point is PO1 making unsubstantiated claims against peanut butter and continuing to do so even in the face of logic and nutrition. I think I made it pretty clear on what grounds I was stating PB is not a bad food choice. Continuing to obscure that is ridiculous.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 12:28PM
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PS - I haven't tried that but I just googled it and it looks fantastic- both nutritionally and taste-wise. Thanks for the tip!

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 12:30PM
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Just to make sure the horse is really down...

A yummy alternative to PB that we also enjoy is Nutella. YUM. I spread a little bit on toast or even a bagel and mmmmmm.....

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 3:35PM
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If everyone is so familiar with what's good and what kids need to eat, then why so many complains here about kids having food issues?

I think if children are very picky or develop a taste for only particular foods or refuse to eat dinner due to excessive snacking, then I believe something needs to be done. Sure fats, carbs, proteins etc all needed for nutrition, yet if excessive or inappropriate consumption causes problems then something needs to be done about it. It is like insisting that a bottle of wine a day is great because wine has some value or hamburgers need to be eaten daily just because meat has nutritional value. If a child eats snacks all the time, I don't care how healthy small amounts of that snacks are, they develop distaste for a normal food.

If kids eat peanut butter once in awhile in a combination with something and have no food issue, then it is fine. But from what people describe they feed their kids peanut butter daily and then complain kids have food issues: too picky or refuse to eat or aren't hungry. Something just isn't working.

Heck if I eat fries few days in a row, trust me salad does not taste good anymore.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 3:36PM
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and it staggers on...

PO1, I agree with what you just posted. Do you understand that I am not disagreeing that snacks right before dinner, or PBJ for every meal is not a good nutritional plan?

Do you understand that you made erroneous claims as to the nutritional value of peanut butter and that is what I am discounting?

As an aside, you must be a very good dancer. Your box-step is amazing.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 5:25PM
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"PBJ for every meal is not a good nutritional plan?"

It's not??? Shoot.


    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 8:47PM
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Love, of course PBJ for every meal is not nutritional! That's just silly. It's very important to serve a variety of meals. That's why my menu is as follows:

Monday: PB & Jelly
Tuesday: PB & Honey
Wednesday: PB & Bacon (My mom used to make us this; actually pretty tasty!)
Thursday: PB & Bananas (Elvis' favorite)
Friday: PB alone
Saturday: PB & applesauce
Sunday: Take out pizza because I'm tired of having "cooked" all week.

See how it works? :-)

Actually, I think I should have been serving PB&J for dinner the last few nights. It's been hot as a blast furnace here, and even worse in the kitchen. I've been trying to make something (like fish, rice and salad) that there's any chance we can eat in this heat. DH and SS have just been picking at it and not wanting to eat much at all because of the heat. Well, I completely understand that - but how about I don't have to stand in the kitchen cooking it when no one (including me) really wants to eat it!? (Just for the record, SS has not been having any snacks this week - just lots of milk. Can't blame him for that....)

    Bookmark   June 10, 2011 at 9:04AM
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Chinese chicken salad is so yummy when it's hot. I have a hard time eating when it gets hot too. You could try switching up breakfast and dinner (we love breakfast for dinner at my house).

    Bookmark   June 10, 2011 at 9:39AM
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Mattie, you forgot PB and dill pickles.
It's surprisingly delicious.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2011 at 10:09AM
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Toasted bread sandwich with melting peanut butter topped with sliced american cheese, dipped in ketsup...DS grossed me out with that one often during football season in high school. I think he still makes them occassionally as the GS asked me to make one for him last weekend when I asked what he's like to do for lunch. GS settled for a small chef salad instead that DD was making for her lunch. Summers DD makes her own lunch from a selected choice of items on her 'menu' list.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2011 at 10:51AM
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I have to admit, I hate American cheese, and I never eat white bread and I rarely eat ketsup, but an American grilled cheese sandwich with mayo, butter, and white bread and dipped in ketsup is AMAZING!

    Bookmark   June 10, 2011 at 11:34AM
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American (I'm in NJ) grilled cheese made with Mayo on the outside of the bread instead of butter and dipped in Tomato Soup!!!!

Ugh I want one right now!

    Bookmark   June 11, 2011 at 6:45PM
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Silver/Jens-- that sounds DISGUSTING lol!!!
Yuk! Mayo is so gross for me it makes me want to scratch my eyeballs out to think about lol

It's so hot here too we haven't been 'eating' right. We had cereal
Two nights in a row ... Lol of course whole grain and fat free milk.

Maybe the reason my DS is so thin is because he won't eat the jelly... Just the PB? Lol so kidding. Kill the thread lol

    Bookmark   June 11, 2011 at 8:55PM
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I like my milk with fat. Ummmm... full fat milk! But I usually have soy instead at my house.

What kind of cereal Myfam? How do you avoid the fruity/coco puffs?

    Bookmark   June 13, 2011 at 1:13PM
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OMG I'd rather eat peanut butter than whatever stuff people are talking about now...LOL Everything is relative.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2011 at 5:45PM
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Jen, I put mayo on the outside and brown. Then add cheese to the browned sides and put together. Then put butter in the pan, and put the sandwich back on the pan..... yummy!!

    Bookmark   June 14, 2011 at 10:37PM
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I've never been able to make a good grilled cheese sandwich if you want to pass over your recipes but leave out the mayo...

We actually have 6 different cereals right now... We like variety.
Dh- fruity pebbles
Me- kellogs vanilla and almonds
Dd- frosted mini wheats and froot loops (they have whole grain froot loops now!!!)
DS- frosted flakes and cheerios

We buy fat free milk, 1% and whole milk. We are all on different diets

I used to buy lactaid or whatever it's called because DS seemed to be allergic to milk, but he is over that now thank goodness..

    Bookmark   June 14, 2011 at 11:15PM
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OMG. None of those except for the Cheerios would make it in the door at my house. We get stuff like Barbara's and Kashi.

The best way, IMO, to make grilled cheese:

1. bread, sliced thin cheese or shredded cheese, and butter. These are the essential ingredients. I like to jazz it up if it's just me eating it and add things like:

Rosemary Sourdough bread, goat cheese, havarti cheese, tomato, arugula, prosciutto, etc...

Anyway, the basic method is this:

Butter both slices of bread, one side only. In a non-stick skillet on medium high place the bread butter-side down until it's melted and the bread is golden toasty and buttery. Turn the bread over, immediately add the cheese and top with the other slice. Both buttered sides are now on the inside of the sandwich (and melting the cheese).

Lower the heat on your pan and get a lid that just fits over the top of the sandwich, creating a little tent. Put the lid over it for 30 seconds, flip the sandwich, repeat. Remove the lid. This helps to flash-melt the cheese.

Take some more butter, pick the sandwich up with the spatula, and place the pat of butter in the pan and put the sandwich on top of the butter. Move the sandwich around, cook until that side is golden brown. Flip, repeat, serve.

I like to add thin sliced tomato after when I'm cooking a basic sandwich. I don't like cooked tomato. But you can add your other ingredients at any time.

The basic idea, for me, is to avoid soggy bread and have thoroughly melted cheese. The mayo, when I use it, is used on the outside of the bread in the first step, flipped to the inside. So the cheese is on the cooked mayo side when the sandwich is finished and the outside is buttered.

My DH hates cooked mayo, but I think it really adds good flavor. You don't need a lot, just a very thin layer, enough to turn golden on the bread.

Serve with really good mustard or ketsup or tomato soup.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2011 at 12:30PM
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DS loves tomato soup ... Yum

Thanks for the instructions. I'm going to try it this weekend.

Cereal is about the only way my kids will get sugary stuff. They don't eat cereal for breakfast. We are an oatmeal breakfast family but I tend to keep the cereal around for snacks. Cereal is my absolute weakness. I don't eat candy/sweets, chocolate, ice cream etc, I love cereal not sure why.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2011 at 12:52PM
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