The Mommy Files – My Kids Won’t Eat THAT

30 Jun

My kids are no different than any other person on this planet.  They have their likes.  They have their dislikes.

But more often than not I hear from so many moms, “you are so lucky, my child would never eat that”

I really dont’ think it has anything to do with luck, or my children being that different.  I think it has much more to do with the approach we take to dinner, and food in general.

So here are some things that we do that has nothing to do with the actual food we are serving but more a mindset about dinner.

1. I am not a short order cook, I do love to cook, but I cook one meal per meal.  We have allergies in this house but we still eat the same thing, I do not make special meals.

2.  We eat dinner together.  We do not eat it in front of the t.v., we sit at the table, and we talk to each other, not our phones or our electronics.  In fact we have always had a “no toys at the table” rule, it has served us well.

3.  We say grace.  Truly, it forces all of us to stop what we’re doing and offer up thanksgiving for the food we’re about to eat.  It re-focuses our energies from what we were doing to the task at hand.

4.  80% of the time you will like what I cook, I cannot always make five people happy 100% of the time.  But if you are in the 20% today please read rule 5….

5.  If you don’t like something you still need to try one bite, to see if you like this dish.  And if you still don’t like it, you can tell me without whining, complaining, fussing, pouting, shouting, crying, or being rude.  This is a life lesson that will serve you well in many areas, learn it now when you’re only a kid so it becomes second nature by the time you’re an adult.

6.  If you’ve tried dinner and do not like it and have told me in a polite way, you may be done.  But you are done.  No other food is available to you, I will not make you a sandwich, you do not get dessert.

7.  Children learn by example.  My husband, bless him, is very good about eating whatever is served.  No complaints.  If your husband is complaining about the food, what makes you think your children won’t?  Likewise SW knows that he is the oldest, he is the example.  He does not like mushrooms, he never has, I love mushrooms, guess what, mushrooms end up in our dinners.  He knows not to complain, that if he complains the younger two will not eat the dish either, but if he quietly pulls them out of the dish, the younger two are non the wiser.

8.  From the time my kids were old enough to walk, they help set the table and they take their dishes to the sink when they are done eating.  Engage them, make them a member of team family, when they feel like they matter and are a part of something bigger they’re a lot less likely to complain!

I know that this is sometimes easier said than done – this doesn’t happen over night either.  These rules stem from bad experiences on our end, don’t think it has always been easy!  But also don’t think it is hopeless!  Work at it, get your family on board!

There are few things I cherish like I cherish sharing food with my family and talking about their days.

Do you have tried and true tricks that work in your house?  Share them below!

3 Responses to “The Mommy Files – My Kids Won’t Eat THAT”

  1. Andrea June 30, 2012 at 2:04 pm #

    I love this a million times. I cannot tell you how confused and even a little angry I get when I hear a parent say they made five meals for dinner, or worse, stopped at three different drive-thrus to make their family happy. Makes no sense. I love your clearly defined ‘rules’. I may copy and paste when we get to the food stage with this little one!

    • ulogue June 30, 2012 at 3:47 pm #

      Thank you! This didn’t come overnight, but now that we have these in place dinner time is so much more pleasant!!! ❤

  2. Andrea June 30, 2012 at 2:09 pm #

    I forgot to add, this is how I was brought up (I assume the same as you) where you eat what is served, sit at the table, etc. – even though it was just my mom and I. I find immense value in it. I was the kid who LOVED every bizarre icky green veggie – brussels sprouts, broccoli, spinach, you name it. I have no doubt it was because of these guidelines and me wanting to be like my mom that made me this way. That and my general love of food. Haha! 🙂

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