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Food

Posted by silversword (My Page) on
Tue, Sep 21, 10 at 23:56

Most kids are picky. Do you make your kids eat anything? Did your parents make you eat anything? I never force food down her throat, if she makes faces or doesn't want to try something, she doesn't have to eat. Nothing I serve/order is so disgusting that a person can't chew and swallow one bite.

I put a small amount of everything I cook (starch, meat, veg) on the plate and dd has to eat everything there before she gets seconds. But I don't put anything on the dinner plate for normal dinners that she doesn't like. (ex. she doesn't prefer salad, but will eat kale, swiss chard, bok choy... so I just don't usually make salads with dinner, or if I do, she gets a different veg. or just a few leaves of lettuce)

When we go out I often order something out of the norm, or when we go to other houses she has to try a "no-thank-you" bite.

I think kids are conditioned to eat "kid food" and I don't buy into that. SD has champagne tastes but often won't eat what she orders. If DD orders crab she eats the whole thing, because it's what she really wants, not because it's the most expensive thing on the menu.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Food

We're very similar, SS. We never cook anything we wouldn't eat ourselves. But, if 4 of 5 of us like something and one doesn't, we won't rule that food out for everyone. Salads are a good example - one child doesn't really like them while the rest of us do. He has to have a bite or two, and then can have some carrots instead. Now we've found he likes them with a different dressing than the rest of us, so I'm happy to get that for him.

Everyone has to try a bite, and there aren't other meals prepared if you don't like what is served.

I'm not okay with the thought of chicken nuggets for kids if they don't like the real meal. The real world doesn't give you a second option if you don't like the first one.


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RE: Food

Very much the same as both of you.

We don't do *kid meals* at our house.

I serve three items--sometimes four--with each meal, and expect that SS and DD eat the main course (ie--chicken, beef, fish, etc) and some of the veggie, which is typically fresh broccoli, green beans, sugar snap peas, carrots, etc.

They both detest asparagus, so the rule is they have to eat one *stalk* when I serve that.

DD is good about veggies---but SS is tough. DH just gives him maybe six or seven bites and tells him he has to eat all of it.

I normally have a side that's not so nutritionally positive---like mashed potatoes, couscous, baked potatoes, etc. STARCHES. I could care less if they eat it.

SS is a big bread/potatoes man, so he will eat it all. If DD says no, I don't push it. The veggies and protein are what I care about. If she rejects the side, then I will offer her an apple or banana or applesauce in its place.

I'd rather she double up on fruit/veggies, anyway, to be honest.

If SS asks for seconds on potatoes, but hasn't finished his meat or veggie first, then he doesn't get seconds.

I bleieve it's important for kids to try everything at least once.

For example--we had grilled tuna the other night and DD said "ewww, I hate tuna." I told her she HAD to try at least one bite; she did and loved it. Actually, she said she "adored" it and wanted to know when we could have it again.

I think it's important to help our kids have an open mind about foods and part of that is encouraging them to try something.

I would never make one of my kids eat something they were gagging down--but I wouldn't serve something like that, anyway, so. Our meals are pretty basic, pretty easy---lots of fresh veggies, lots of meat/chicken/fish, lots of grilling, etc.

SS tends to be the more *complicated* eater. His mom is Italian and at her house, it's lots of pastas with rich sauces, garlic cheese bread several times a week, etc. I think sometimes our meals are too *plain* for his liking, but he's much better than he used to be.


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RE: Food

We're pretty much the same. We always make at least three dishes (meat, vegetables and starch) and SS has to eat all of at least two and try the third. He varies between which two he'll eat so in the end it's reasonably balanced. I've noticed if he is feeling more secure overall he's more willing to try new food; if he's upset he wants to revert to "kid" food (I guess it's his equivalent of comfort food).

The exception is if we make something that we know he's probably not going to like, such as very spicy food (SS doesn't do spicy), sometimes if we make an entire meal of completely exotic dishes, or if we make an unusual meat (I'm not going to make a child gag down venison when he's thinking of Bambi).

When I was a kid, we had to eat all of everything that was served to us, regardless of what it was. To make matters worse my father served us, so we were unable to take a "no thank you" serving and just have a couple bites; we were served an entire portion. What a terrible idea - because we were unable to eat less if we were truly not hungry, we learned to ignore when our body was saying that we were full. On the bright side, I'll eat any vegetable that is placed in front of me and pretty much always did - I learned at a young age that vegetables are safe, it was the unidentifiable meat that was to be feared!


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RE: Food

We are pretty similar. I give the kids small portions on their dinner plates and they have to eat at least all the veggies and a little of the meat. If they want seconds of anything they have to eat everything they currently have on their plate first. (Most times the kids are not even full from the small portions and they finish everything so they can have more of something) Also, there is no dessert for anyone who does not finish their dinner.


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RE: Food

Me too Mom2... I serve such small first portions it pretty much guarantees asking for seconds. Around 1/4-1/2 cup of each item.

Funny that your kids don't like asparagus Love. My dd doesn't like broccoli but will eat all the asparagus I give her. But I do make her try a small bit each time I serve it in case her tastes change, and the last time I served it with a bit of melted cheese on top and she snarfed it down. So I guess the broccoli dislike has passed.

I have one friend who serves the meal, the kids eat a few bites, whine that they are not hungry, leave their plates on the table, and 10 minutes later "I want a snack".

..... and she gives it to them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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RE: Food

"I have one friend who serves the meal, the kids eat a few bites, whine that they are not hungry, leave their plates on the table, and 10 minutes later "I want a snack".

..... and she gives it to them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

That's how BM is with SS.

Back in the day (LOL) when he was still very much buying her BS, hook, line and sinker, she'd call at bedtime and he'd whine to her that he was hungry.

She'd wig out and demand he put his father on the phone and insist that DH give him a snack.

But--that's our rule, too, always has been--if you do not finish what we consider to be a reasonable amount of your dinner, then no dessert and no snacking. If there's any substantial amount left---then it goes in the fridge for later.

It was a rough couple years with SS but for the last two years, he's gotten used to our way of doing things.

It's still the same at BM's---no veggies, double starches (like, she'll serve mashed potatoes and mac n'cheese in the same meal), and SS eats chips/cookies/candy pretty much as often as he wants. SIGH.

Not our prob, though. He eats healthy, good foods with us and, what's more, he accepts it and doesn't seem to mind, anymore.


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RE: Food

I my own self had a huge appetite as a child, but in a way I guess I was "picky";
I could eat plates of fried chicken & mashed potatoes & baked beans & ham &....

but our food was good plain country cooking.

Had I been forced to try a bite of anything that looked icky, I feel sure I'd have gagged & hurled.

& I grew up healthy without ever eating escargot!

Eating should be a pleasure, not an ordeal & not a chore & not a control or power issue.

My ex's eldest son was complicated;
he had a ravenous appetite when he thought about it, but often he wouldn't remember to eat unless someone put food in front of him.

He also was one of those little guys whose macaroni could not touch the roast beef.

We separated the foods, didn't try to make him eat anything he didn't want, & never ever teased him about food.

He grew up strong & healthy & free from food phobias & tics.


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RE: Food

"Eating should be a pleasure."

Yes and no.

I know what you're saying and I completely agree in the sense that mealtimes should neither be stressful nor a control/power play.

I do disagree, however, that eating is purely pleasure.

I think it's important to teach our children that food is fuel for the body. There's a reason we limit sweets and sugars, and fats---because those things, while fine in moderation, aren't necessarily good for our bodies.

I do think it is important to teach our children to enjoy healthy foods.


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RE: Food

How would you know what "icky" looks like?
What is "icky"?

Is "good plain country cooking" better food or less "icky" than bangers and mash or Jambalaya or bisque or quiche or corned beef and cabbage or japchae or bibimbap or eggplant Parmesan or 7 mares soup or Pho or Tom Yum?

DD would not eat grilled cheese or lasagna or burritos or beans at all (including baked beans) or pizza for the longest time. I didn't force it on her, but yes, when we were eating it she had to try a bite. Now she loves all of them.

This is how she got to know Pho: she came with me to work, and I took her out to get lunch. I told her I was getting Pho, but she could have whatever she wanted (within the few blocks or so). She wanted a kid's meal from drive through (a treat). I said fine, she got her cheeseburger/fries/drink and I got my Pho. When we got back to the office I said, now try a bite of mom's lunch just to see what you think. She was reluctant. I mean, ewwwwwww.... long white rice noodles, bean sprouts, chunks of meat, basil, lime juice... who would want to eat that weird looking stuff?????

LOL. She tried one bite, pushed the burger aside and ate my lunch instead. Had I let her judge the food with her eyes, she never would have tried it. Now that's all she wants to eat when she comes to my work and I have to order her a full order because she will eat the whole thing.

When we go out to eat at restaurants she does not get to order the kid's meal. She eats the food that the restaurant specializes in, like the other night, gumbo and red beans and rice with bead pudding for dessert instead of chicken fingers, chips and ice cream. I hardly think this is cruelty!


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RE: Food

SS has to have a little of everything... One of us fills his plate the first time and makes sure he has a little of everything. One he finishes that, he is welcome to seconds of whatever he would like. Occasionally we say "Yes, you can have more pasta, but take a couple more carrots while you're at it."

I take his preferences into account when making meals when he is with us. I'm more likely to make foods that I know he likes when he is here, and less likely to make things I know (or suspect) won't appeal to him.

If he has tried the meal and REALLY doesn't like it, then he can make himself peanut butter toast and/or some fresh veggies and dip. But I'm not making a second meal for him, and he's not eating junk food instead of supper.


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RE: Food

DD ate everything, she is pretty easy, she was especially (and is) a big fan of fruits and vegetables. I was lucky not having pressuring or convincing her. I would probably have different experiences if she was a picky eater, I would reserve to elaborate strategies.

I don't know what "kid foods" are. The only "kid food" I think is breast milk or formula if mom is not nursing, or maybe mashed food before they get teeth. LOL

Now DD is very much into healthy eating. She has tendency to gain weight easilly so she is being careful. I am actually impressed with her never having junk food. I do want junk once in awhile. There are things I don't eat, I think DD does not eat them either, game and pork.

I think it is OK to have preferences though, or likes/dislikes. nothing wrong with that, I don't see any need to insist that everyone has to love everything. I don't like scallops while it is DD's favorite food.

SDs are very particular about food and it is always a commotion before they come visit. DD would eat whatever at home or out, any ethnic foods, as long as it is not full of junk. SDs have lists of things they either don't eat or are allergic to or don't like or it makes them sick and so on... SO is the same way. i am easy.


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RE: Food

As I said, I ate good plain country cooking;
my diet was pleasurable & did not have excess fats or sugars.

You can serve healthy foods without making it a crusade *against* something;
just don't buy fatty sugary stuff.

& like beauty, "icky" is in the eye of the beholder.

It's not up to a negatively motivated or faultfinding or control freak parent or stepparent to judge whether a preference or aversion or quirk is unreasonable;
our preferences & aversions & quirks should be respected as long as they aren't dangerous (ie, "I can't eat anything but jelly.")

& if a child told me he couldn't eat anything but jelly , I'd consult a pediatrician before I forced him to eat something he didn't want.

As I said, the elder boy was grossed out by foods touching.

We put his food in separate little areas or even in separate dishes.

much better than insisting on being right at the cost of making his tastes & preferences wrong & turning mealtime into a battle.


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RE: Food

Do you really not know what I mean by "kid foods"?

fish sticks
noodles
mac and cheese
french fries
hot dogs
pizza
hamburgers
sloppy joes
waffles
pancakes

When you go to a restaurant have you ever looked at the kid's menu??

The last menu was from Season's Eatery and Pub in Martha's Vineyard. Check out the adult menu. What I'm saying is that I will order an appetizer and an adult meal and so will DH and we will split them with her, so her meal could consist of endamame, miso soup, BBQ chicken breast, and baked stuffed shrimp rather than her eating yet another chicken finger and fry combo.

I do give her options (endamame or chicken satay, bbq chicken or ribs, etc...) but they aren't from the kid's menu.


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RE: Food

Sylvia, "good plain country cooking" differs depending on the region where you are from. A person would never consider "fried chicken & mashed potatoes & baked beans & ham..." plain where I am from. Baked beans contain maple syrup, molasses or brown sugar (or all three). Fried chicken is very hard on the heart.

Where I'm from, "good plain country cooking" means a lot of vegetables, fresh fish and seafood, and rice. I'm sure "good plain country cooking" in what sounds to be the N. American South does not include raw fish for dinner, but it did in the part of the country where I'm from.

"& like beauty, "icky" is in the eye of the beholder. It's not up to a negatively motivated or faultfinding or control freak parent or stepparent to judge whether a preference or aversion or quirk is unreasonable;
our preferences & aversions & quirks should be respected as long as they aren't dangerous"

What about the positively motivated parent or stepparent? I think most food quirks are unreasonable. I have seen too many little children (and adults!!) decide just by looking that they will not eat a dish. I think it is a parent's responsibility to feed their children healthily and to introduce them to as many different tastes as possible.

I think it is a lack of character that shows when someone refuses to eat something based on "quirks" and there are far too many people who go without for me to be willing to indulge a child's whimsical decision not to eat something on principle. As long as it's not going to hurt them, when they are hungry, they will eat.

I would never force a child to eat something. Nor will I allow a child to hold me hostage in my kitchen. Only in recent history have children had a say in "what's for dinner". I ask DD that on occasion, and she plans a lot of our meals but she is not the final judge on what I'm cooking for my family.

She is willing to try "just one bite" of anything because if she doesn't like it, she doesn't have it eat it. But she does have to try. Mealtime is never a battle at our house, and never has been.

And if a child told me "I can't eat anything but jelly" I wouldn't consult a pediatrician. I'd tell them "you'll get pretty hungry then, won't you".

Kids will not starve themselves.

As an aside, I met a man from Kentucky through a friend. He was over and the subject turned to tofu as all the snacks I had out were Asian (something I didn't realize until I had put everything out, it was just standard fare for us). He said "tofu, blech, ugh, looks like jiggly fat, blah blah blah". I asked him if he'd ever tried it, he said no. So I got him out a piece, dipped it in some warm soy sauce and handed it over. Said "just one bite???" *grin*. And that big ol' Kentucky boy with the cut off shorts and plaid shirt and John Deere hat with the grease stains (no, I'm not joking) tasted the tofu and actually asked for more. He was slapping me on the back and laughing by the end of the night "them boys are never gonna believe I ate bean turds (curds)".

My cousin caught sand crabs and cooked them up this summer. Offered me some. His wife said "you're not going to try those are you? ewwww". I sure did. And they were delicious. DD tried one, didn't like it, and I didn't make her eat any more. Why would I? They were great and I don't like to waste good food on someone who isn't going to enjoy it!


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RE: Food

This is a bad subject at our house. I wish my Skids would eat good foods instead of "kid food". The reason they dont is because my DH or BM has never made them try anything. IF its a veggie they will not try it. They will eat bread, nuggets, fries, burgers, taco (meat & ketchup only)maybe a few more things. The oldest eats very few things. I have givin up cooking for them. I cook we sit down to eat they all start complaining, whining, then they each get up and make themselves, nuggets, PB&J. Oh this has caused so much conflict. BM does not cook, everything is frozen or take out.

My SS said why cant you just make stuff we like, mamma does? I said fine, tell me what your mom cooks for you and I will make that stuff when your here. His reply " well she doesnt cook but she takes us to eat at resturaunts we like". Theres my problem. They are used to ordering off a menu. There is no menu at my house. I wish I could help them to eat healthy but its way too late and I am not their mother. My DH just lets them get up and fix whatever they want.

I woke up Saturday morning, walked into kitchen and heard "hide it, hide it" it was the girls telling SS to hide the ice cream he was eating for breakfast. Come to find out they all had ice cream for breakfast. I had taken his before he got very much of it so he told on the other 2.
As a result of the bad eating habits, they all have splotchy skin, the middle SD is over weight. SS plays alot of sports and is a little guy, it worries me that he does not get much nutrition.

I'm sorry I used your new thread to vent.


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RE: Jess

Ha ha ha ha Jess. Don't be sorry. It's just a discussion thread. :) I'm glad you contributed!

Have you tried blending veggies and then mixing them in the burger, with an egg too? I would not have nuggets or PB&J in the house... so they have very few options. But that's just me. One kind of cereal, bread, lunch meat. No chips. Veggie sticks and dip.

But DH needs to be on board, and it sounds like this is a fight he just doesn't want to get involved in.

Making a menu would be a fun craft!!! How about they each get to write down a meal and put it in a hat. Then you get to write a meal, and DH gets to write a meal. It sounds like there are three of them, so they would get their way 3 out of 5 meals, right?

Deal is, you eat the food they put on the menu, they eat the food you put on the menu. You could make out a nice menu, listing what is going to be served.

LOL on the ice cream for breakfast. I found my chocolate syrup in DD's backpack one day ;)


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RE: Food

"You can serve healthy foods without making it a crusade *against* something; just don't buy fatty sugary stuff."

what a great point!!! i don't really understand how is that kids eat fries or peanut butter or nuggets (are they uncooked and kids cook themselves?) rather than whatever they were supposed to be eating. If you don't buy any of that, kids won't eat it. They eat what's there. I am not food nazi, but there is only one solution here, don't buy what you don't want them to eat, then there would be nothing to argue about.


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RE: Food

As a kid, I don't remember ever being made to eat foods but I do remember my sister refused to eat tomato. I can remember my mom telling me she would send my plate to starving children & the emphasis was more on appreciating the bounty on the table, rather than pleasing our palate. My mom was relentless with "just try it" so we always tried it. She wasn't exactly thrilled when I loved lobster & crab legs. haha

With my kids, I cooked a lot when they were little & I was with exBF. He had a son that was very picky but food was not much of an issue, he would just leave the things off his plate that he didn't like. I never decided my meals based on what anyone disliked, but I made big meals and there was always stuff everyone would eat. When exBF & I split up and it was just me & my kids, we ate way too much 'kid food' and fast food. As a single mom with pre-teens, I worked 10 hour days & pizza or Taco Bell seemed like an easy solution... the kids never complained. On my days off, I did catering so they got my cooking then & I don't think there is anything they didn't like. I am also a pretty good cook and when my kids were growing up, when I cooked at home it was not unusual for me to take 'orders' and make everyone what they wanted, like a short order cook. At times, I would make lasagna's or enchiladas & freeze them ahead so the kids could put them in the oven so it would be ready when I got home from work. The funny thing is... my oldest son is the only one that cooks now.

Since I got married, my husband is the PICKIEST eater I've ever met. He won't eat veggies... when I asked why he doesn't feed SD veggies, he said she doesn't like them. As it turns out, he had never given them to her because HE didn't like them so he conveniently assumed she didn't like them either. She will eat whatever is put in front of her. That's the bad news, when she eats it when she really doesn't like it. She won't tell us she doesn't like it, so that presents a problem. Maybe she doesn't want to hurt the cook's feelings? (I'm the cook) Maybe it gives her something to complain to her mom about? (Ima made me eat that!) We've NEVER told her she HAS to eat or even try anything, she will eat just about anything so there is no need to make an issue of it. She lets us know her favorites... enchiladas & burritos. She had a weight problem when she was 5 and keeps it under control when she's at our house because I refuse to buy the junk she likes.. chips, soda, candy, sweets, etc. Her dad sets a terrible example but he's so active, he burns it all off. I gain weight just smelling or thinking of that stuff... so I empathize with SD's weight problems. But, then she goes to her mom & eats donuts with mountain dew for breakfast... or lots of fast food & pre packaged/processed easy foods.

Our biggest food battle in our house is having BM complain about what we feed or don't feed SD... which doesn't really happen anymore since we are now retorting with "where's your child support payment?" whenever she says ANYTHING about ANYTHING. Strangely, she is avoiding us.


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RE: Food

@ Ima... Strangely, she is avoiding us.
I can't imagine why ;)

@ PO1... exactly. Kids eat what parents buy.

A lot of kid food issues are parent food issues, I think.


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RE: Food

"I have seen too many little children (and adults!!) decide just by looking that they will not eat a dish."

lol, I LOVE Chinese food. When we were dating, DH proclaimed he hated it & would never set foot in a Chinese restaurant. I finally convinced him to go with me.. he ordered beef broccoli without broccoli (LOL)... so just the beef & put it on steamed rice. He LOVED it. He doesn't like any veggies so he assumed all Chinese food had veggies.... he has since added three or four things he likes & we used to go to our favorite Chinese restaurant once a week. But, he is one that will say I don't like it just because it has a weird name or looks strange. I love to try new things, he could eat meat & mash potatoes with gravy, every day. (lol, the beef on rice with the sauce looks just like beef & mashed potatoes & gravy)


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RE: Food

Silver: Great ideas. We will have to try them.

PO1: We went through a phase where I didnt buy any "kid foods" only veggies, fruits, whiole grain, ect. They told their mom we did not feed them because they were going home hungry from our house. After a trip to the councelor, and alot of unneeded stress. The councelor told my DH to let them fix whatever they want if they dont like what we are having. I disagree, if they were my kids I would say too bad. Eat what I cook for dinner or you have no dinner. But they are not mine and if their mom & dad dont care its not for me have any say. Afterall I'm just the SM. Every once in a while we get lucky adn have a nice dinner if I make something they happen to like that day.

No, they dont eat it uncooked. The oldest is 14, she can turn on the oven or microwave and cook the junk food. She complains that she has to and tells us they are kids and we are bad parents, we should cook differnt things for them. Personally I dont like the microwave either. I use it for popcorn or to heat my coffee thats it. As you can see dinner time at our house is a mess.


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RE: Food

What about yummy smoothies? You can put a lot of good stuff in smoothies and they wouldn't even be able to taste it. If you freeze bananas it makes the smoothie nice and creamy without needing ice cream.

Add yogurt, milk, flax seeds, silken tofu, wheat germ, or protein powder for an extra bit of nutrition. Add a bit of vanilla for taste. Oat bran is also good.

Frozen orange juice makes a yummy mock orange Julius.

If they'll eat meatloaf you can blend a bunch of pre-cooked veggies in the blender, cool, then add to the meat. They won't notice it. Same with any kind of casserole. Even chicken nuggets can be healthy if you make them yourself.

The Sneaky Chef is a really great resource.

Otherwise, I'd just buy them a loaf of bread, a bag of chips, some PB&J and the healthiest microwave dinners I could find.

Here is a link that might be useful: The Sneaky Chef


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