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  1. #11
    wellyes's Avatar
    wellyes is offline Blue Diamond level (20,000+ posts)
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    I do make things for DH and I that I know my kids don't like
    Yes, and on those days I do "cater" to the kids. Honestly I "cater" to myself every day since I get to pick the meal.

    I think it really wouldn't be reasonable of me to expect them to eat whatever I make, since, I would not eat whatever was made for me if I had ZERO control over the menu. And if the person making the menu that I disliked said "you'll eat eventually, you won't starve!", that would not foster my love of new foods, I don't think. It is a parent's responsibility to consistently offer new tastes and nutritious meals, of course. But meals should be a joyous shared experience. A shared meal is just an excuse to sit and hang out together and talk..... it should never be a battleground. If it becomes a battleground, something needs to change.
    DD - 8
    DS - 5

  2. #12
    abh5e8 is offline Emerald level (3000+ posts)
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    no, no catering here. i serve 1 meal. they eat it or wait for the next. i'm also pretty tight with snacks. they get offered 1 small snack in the afternoon (usually a class of milk + raw veggies and/or fruit). mine eat veggies and salad. i think the best advice i got about this is, just keep serving it and eat it myself. (dh and I both eat veggies and salad). i also plate their meals, so a small bit of everything in the meal. they can have more veggies anytime. more of meat and other sides only if they eat everything else on their plates. so far it has worked well for us. (our children are neurotypical and do not have any special needs).

    we are also pretty low sugar. fruit with some meals. but no desserts on a regular basis at home. just for birthdays. and on sundays, snack at sunday school is usually sweet.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by wellyes View Post
    It is a parent's responsibility to consistently offer new tastes and nutritious meals, of course. But meals should be a joyous shared experience. A shared meal is just an excuse to sit and hang out together and talk..... it should never be a battleground. If it becomes a battleground, something needs to change.
    ITA with that! I was brought up with a food battleground and that has had repercussions to this day. I would never do that to my child. Ironically, with our more loosey-goosey ways, my DS has a much more extensive food repertoire than most kids has age as well as ALL of his 4 grandparents with their "you'll eat what you're served". Eating is about nutrition but it should also be fun and enjoyable. I dreaded mealtimes for years growing up. It was horrific.
    DS, Summer '07

    "My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world." ~Jack Layton

  4. #14
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    No catering at all. I make one meal for everyone. Everyone gets served everything at a meal even if I know they don't like it, because one day they may like it (like how DS1 now loves salad).

    DS2 is picky about veggies too but I find if I roast them he'll usually eat them. He won't touch raw veggies at all.
    Latia (Birth & Postpartum Doula and Infant Nanny)
    Conner 8/19/03 (My 1st home birthed water baby!)
    Parker 5/23/09 (My 2nd home birthed water baby!)

  5. #15
    Simon is offline Ruby level (4000+ posts)
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    I cater plenty in the sense that I seek input from Dh and Ds1 about meals. Dh used to cook things I hated when we were first married and I felt it was disrespectful and put me in a foul mood (I was irritated at him and also hungry). We do ask the kids to try new things but offer alternatives to hungry kids. I also always get consent from our pickiest eater. We do have special food needs in our home so it makes the whole vibe different and it can be a challenge to explain why the rules are different for different kids.
    Ds1 (2006). Ds2 (2010). Ds3 (2012).

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by rin View Post
    We do not cater at all. The vast majority of children (with some exceptions, of course) are not going to allow themselves to starve. There are definitely meals where they don't eat much, but they make up for it at the next meal/snack. We try to make there be something at each meal that is more likely to be eaten, but we don't go all-out; for many meals, for example, they can have a choice of eating the stir-fried veggies & meat with rice, or just the rice. If they only like one thing from the stir-fry, they can eat just that, but they don't get any more of it than would be in their usual serving (so no raiding the serving dish for all the chicken and leaving the rest of the family with only vegetables).

    IMO your DH's approach absolutely sounds like a recipe for creating a picky eater. You might enjoy reading some of Ellyn Sattar's work? She writes about feeding kids and creating a division of responsibility where you are responsible for picking what & when gets served, and your child is responsible for deciding how much gets eaten.

    Our best veggie tips:

    *vegtable smoothies! Kale, spinach, beet, and carrot smoothies are all big hits here (not all in the same smoothie!)
    *Parmesan cheese. A sprinkling of this seems to make everything taste better for our girls
    *having them help with the prep. Our girls are still little, so this is usually something like "washing" the carrots or helping pick lettuce from the garden, maybe adding salt. We then really talk up the co-chef angle.


    Unless we make something very hot and spicy and for whatever reason it doesn't work to take some out for them before adding spice/heat in which case I will make a desperate childrens dinner.
    Last edited by vtmom; 07-06-2013 at 05:58 AM.

  7. #17
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    We don't cater. We make me meal and usually can count on the kids to eat at least one thing...the meat, or the starch or the veggie. We will allow seconds on the item(s) they like. We don't allow thirds unless they've attempted the the other items on their plate. On rare occasion we've allowed a child the have pbj or cereal if they've shunned the entire meal but that's really very rare.
    Mom to two amazing DDs ('07 & '09) and a fur baby.

    Gluten free since Nov '11 after non-celiac gluten sensitive diagnosis. Have had great improvement or total elimination of: migraines, bloating/distention, heartburn, cystic acne, canker sores, bleeding gums, eczema on elbows, dry skin and scalp, muscle cramps, PMS, hair loss, heart palpitations, fatigue. I'm amazed.

  8. #18
    mommylamb's Avatar
    mommylamb is offline Red Diamond level (10,000+ posts)
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    I cater. I admit it. I used to feel really like a failure because of this, but I am at the point as a parent where I refuse to let anyone make me feel bad about it. My kids eat. They eat relatively balanced meals. They grow. They're healthy. There are other battles that I would chose over this one.

    DH and I don't get home from work until at least 6 pm. The kids are hungry. I think it would be irresponsible for me to make my 17 month old wait another hour for dinner. And my 6 year old sometimes wants to eat right then too. So, I fix something for them that takes very little time on many nights. Sometimes DS1 will want what DH and I are eating for dinner, so he'll get a healthy snack to tide him over. DS1 is picky about some things and not others. Both boys don't like a lot of the vegetables that DH and I eat on a regular basis (kale, swiss chard, brussle sprouts, spinach, etc), so I'll make them frozen broccoli or frozen green beans. Whatever. They're eating vegetables. Often DS1 will eat carrot sticks as his vegetable. Over the years he has become far less picky than he used to be, even without forcing him to eat dinner with us every night. I just think it's a process. He still refuses to eat kid foods like pasta and rice, but now loves shrimp and goat cheese, neither of which he would touch a year ago. Go figure. DS2 so far seems less picky than DS1, and my parenting with him hasn't been different. They're just different kids.

    I'm sure that someday he'll decide that food that touches (stews, casseroles) aren't the devil. For now, I'll separate his food so it doesn't touch. And if he wants a sandwich for dinner because we're having pasta, or if he's hungry when we get home and can't wait for us to cook, I'll do that for him.
    DS1 6/07

    DS2 2/12

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