One of our favorite books is The Seven Silly Eaters written by Mary Ann Hoberman and illustrated by Marla Frazee. (Marla Frazee is one of my favorite illustrators.) In the story, the Peters family has a child who only like a certain food. Then another comes along and the second likes something totally different. The mother ends up with seven kids who all eat different foods and the chaos that ensues.
Hits a little close to home. Actually, Nick is a pretty decent eater. He likes sushi, dabbles in quite a few vegetables, prefers bacon and chicken to just about anything else, but refuses to eat eggs.
Maggie, on the other hand, refuses a lot. For a long time she didn’t eat anything red. We are over the red phase now, and when I made spaghetti and meatballs last night she ran up to me and hugged me instead of crying. She has just started to eat a little raw spinach, but only on odd days. Carrots are OK sometimes, but depends on the weather. Peanut butter and jelly, oh she eats about 5-6 of those a week. Cereal, oatmeal and eggs finish out another 3-4 meals. Her personal favorite right now is corn dogs. (wretch) The other day I tried to get her to try a (jarred dole, not fresh) piece of papaya she recoiled. Then she finally tried and now she loves papaya, “It’s my favorite fruit!” (We’re not going to comment on the fact that it’s jarred papaya and she would likely recoil from a fresh papaya the same was she does fresh peaches and oranges.) I slipped a piece of pineapple in her dish to see if I might get one past her lips.
“You can’t fool me!” she declared, casting the pineapple aside. It was all I could do to keep from blurting out that the corn dogs I have recently bought and she has recently starting consuming with vigor are veggie corn dogs. Ha. I win. This teeny tiny battle.
But the dinnertime battle – the showdown of mom vs child – veggies still on the plate, dessert lurking like a bribe hanging in the air. Do you do this? Do you make them try. Do you make them eat a certain amount? Maggie has taken to putting veggies in her mouth and gagging. At the table. While I’m trying to eat. OMG. They are real gags. She’s not pretending, and she is dramatic. So I tell her to go spit it out and try not to gag myself.
What do you do? I’m curious.