It's been a few weeks since I've done one of our "Big Change" posts, so if you're just joining us, you can go back and see what has been talked about previously.
We started out with becoming aware of our eating habits.
Discussed my past romance with fast food.
Talked about finding time for exercise and healthy eating.
You'll often find me indulging, guilt free.
We've been slowly making our way through my own personal journey to a healthier lifestyle.
So the last place we left off, was me having babies.
Teeny tiny people left in your care, for you to raise.
But what should they eat??
With your first, you'll read every book, scan every baby website, and subscribe to every baby newsletter out there to help guide you on the way....right?
At least that's what I did.
Start with this, try some of that.
Wait a while to introduce that, but not before you let them try this.
It's all a bit annoyingly confusing.
But I loved feeding time with both my babies--nothing beats mashed carrots smeared in blonde hair
(theirs and mine).
But then what??
They do have to start eating non-baby foods eventually, and I was anxious to stop buying those expensive little jars.
So, they ate what we ate.
All of it.
No separate dinners for baby.
Whatever we ate, went right into my little chopper and out came instant baby food.
And they ate it--because it was dinner.
So I have a hard time answering people when they ask me how I get my kids to eat this food or that food, or most commonly asked, how to eat vegetables.
My kids have never known they had an option.
You can't expect your kids to like something if you don't let them experience it.
At three years old, I caught they boy's tiny hand up on the cutting board sneaking chopped onions.
I was disgusted, but let him do it, because hey--he liked it!
If you ask him his favorite food today he just might tell you cilantro.
My kids like strong flavors, but only because I've always exposed them to different things.
If you have little teeny tiny ones at home, give them all the veggies you can. If they turn it down once, try try again--chances are they will change their mind.
If they are older, here are some ideas on getting them to try new things
-Let them help. If you involve your kids in the kitchen--let them add this and stir that, have them help plan the menu, they will be more excited about eating it.
-Plant a garden. For many of you it's planting season already! We are getting ourselves ready for some cold weather veggies soon. Let your kids get dirty with you--
they will love to dig and look for worms.
Ask them what they want to plant, and let them do it.
If they watch their very own plant grow, chances are they will be excited to try it out.
If you don't have the space for a garden--plant one or two pots. One tomato plant can be so fun for kids to watch grow.
-Take them to the grocery store with you. Let them pick out any fruit or veggie they like.
You may end up having to try something new too:)
-Take them to your local farmer's market. They will LOVE it, as will you. This is one of our favorite places to be in the summer. Most of the farmers are giving out samples, which will allow them to try all kinds of yummy produce. And again, let them pick out something they want to try.
-Don't take no for an answer.....haha does that sound mean?? But really, remember that YOU are the mom/(do dads read this thing?), and you know what's best for your kids. In this case, vegetables are best for your kids. If they don't like it, make them eat three bites. Three bites won't kill them, I promise.
Have it again the next week, make them try three bites again. If you avoid certain foods, they'll never learn to like them.
-Be a good example. Your kids watch EVERYTHING you do ("but mommy, YOUR room isn't clean"), so if you're not eating your veggies, chances are they won't either.
My challenge for you this week, is to try a new fruit or vegetable-whether it's one you choose, or something your kids want to try.
It's never too late to get a good variety of produce into your kids' (and your:) diet.
I would love to hear what you are trying, and also any tips you have on getting kids to try new things!
I'll be posting my favs on my facebook page, if you'd like to come join the discussion.