Monday, April 14, 2008

Small triumphs

It's probably technically untrue to say that the wee man is a fussy eater.

After all, as I was pointing out to a friend yesterday, this is a boy who eats hummous, pesto, balsamic vinegar, molasses, capsicum, whose favourite cheese is Romano, and who loves ginger juice. This is his mama's boy!

Still, like most small kids, he has been passing through a fairly particularly stage ("I hate vegetables etc etc ") for the past couple of years. This has meant a fair bit of under-cover vegetable activity, and occasional blatant bribery to get him to eat at least some of his main meal before tucking into fruit or vanilla yoghurt. So often, he resists eating things on principle, I'm sure. I'm wise enough not to press too hard. I ask him to taste something at least once - often he'll then realise that it's actually quite palatable, thank you very much, and he just might manage another few mouthfuls over the next 20 minutes or so. A win, I think, and gratefully pass over the yoghurt.

Tonight, I tried something that I had read about a while ago (and promptly forgotten about till I placed the dishes on the table, and the serving spoons, and told him he could serve himself as much (or as little *sotto voce*) as he liked, on the condition that he has a go at eating whatever he puts on his plate, before any thought of dessert. Guess what? He ate all his first serving (which I would have been quite satisfied with, since it included potato & sweet potato mash which he would not normally touch with a barge pole)...and he went back for seconds! Woohoo! It might not work every night, but what a good start...

1 comment:

Joh said...

The self serve is the best strategy for getting kids to eat well. I didn't discover it early enough yet I still with my remaining 17 year old put all the food in serving bowls and let him select for himself what he wants. I think it is healthy to only eat as much as you want.

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