Parenting, Toddler

Grumpy Face Pancakes

There were no food experiments or battles tonight.

Instead, my baby had a date with her grandma and 10 year old uncle at the pumpkin patch. It was a welcome break for me, since I also have a two month old baby. I got to “sleep while the baby sleeps.” And since I twisted my ankle last night, I was a hot mess today. Limping around the house, watching the Tales from the Crypt movie (ridiculous), and staring at the laundry I didn’t fold last night.


She came home filthy, and a little (a lot) wind warn. My brother reported that the wind had knocked her over. FIVE times. Poor thing.

Instead of torturing my over tired kiddo with vegetables, I polished her up, smothered her in coconut oil, and fed her a plate of things she likes. Popcorn, banana, and left over chocolate smiley face pancake from her breakfast out. Of course, Roo refused a bite of chocolate pancake. When gently prodded with, “But its a smiley face!” She replied that she would prefer a grumpy face pancake.

“Excuse me? Could you please scrape the happiness off this pancake?”


Tomorrow is a new, veggie filled day.

Food, Parenting, Toddler, Uncategorized

“Bite bite bite your chicken tonight!”

Tonight, I channeled Don McLean.

In the heat of dinner battles, with all men down, nearing defeat, I reached deep within to find my inner strength… I started singing, “Biiite bite bite your chicken tonight!” Hubby jumped in, “Stop your fussing, stop your fighting Roo, and just take a bite.”

Now, if you don’t know who Don McLean is, let me refresh your memory. *clears throat*

“Byyyye bye Miss American pie! Drove my Chevy to the levee but the levee was dry…” And so on. Yadda yadda.

My daughter, without missing a beat, followed with, “Bye bye chicken goodbye.” Only her version was much more theatrical and included some interpretive dance with her looking off into the distance and waving goodbye to an imaginary chicken. Quite beautiful, actually.

That’s the kind of family I live in.

I really can’t pinpoint where we went wrong! We made chicken strips! The kid LOVES chicken strips! We figured to take the pressure off a bit after last night’s intensity, we’d go with something partially agreeable. (Don’t worry, they were breaded in whole wheat and fried in olive oil – we pretend to be healthy on fried food night.)

The vegetables on the menu this evening were broccoli and a bag of Roma tomatoes that were nearing the end of their life.

Since Roma’s are incredibly boring as far as tomatoes go, I halved them, and little Roo went to work on seasoning, and arranging them on our badly abused pizza pan (as you’ll recall, pizza is among the agreeable items; this particular pizza pan has seen it ALL). We tossed them in the oven to roast.


We left the broccoli uncooked (“Look at the little trees!”).

Again, after last night’s extreme failure, our plan tonight was simple: tune out the drama, eat slowly, and engage in occasional non-pushy, food based discussion.

“What colors are on your dinner plate tonight?”
“Can you spot the broccoli?”

She spotted it.

But she refused to try a bite.

Unamused toddler was not amused.

The evening closed with a dance party in the living room.


Big Plans

My daughter (we will call her Roo) has always been an “easy” child. She was in a hurry to sleep through the night when she was a baby, and in most ways is incredibly well behaved and polite. She’s compassionate, and her tantrums are few and short lived.

Life’s great!


You see, Roo is a picky eater *cue ominous music*.

After reading all the rules about what not to do (“don’t force them, don’t beat them, don’t give up”) and what to do (“offer variety”) – blah blah blah blah blah! – all that happened was a lot of chicken nuggets and V8 Fusion juice.

Literally. My child eats the following without fighting:

Chicken Nuggets
Juice (any veggie blended juice is adorably called “Sneaky Juice”)
Pickles (sometimes)
Grilled cheese
Most fruit

Oh. And chocolate milk.

I left out the obvious crap like cookies, cake, ice cream.

It’s become ridiculous. Any food approaching her that is not on the list is met with blood curdling shrieks.

So I devised an evil plan (muahahahaha). She’s now been enslaved in the kitchen.

Okay okay. Enslaved sounds a little harsh. I’m training her to be my mini dinner cooking assistant!

Tonight was a trial run. We bundled up and walked to the grocery store to select our produce. A variety of colorful potatoes, carrots, onion, and zucchini were chosen by Roo (with help). She seasoned and stirred and shook ziplock bags. She was excited as we put the pan into the oven! And a rainbow of roasted vegetables was born!


And it was delicious.

And she refused to eat one freaking bite. She selected a speck of cauliflower from a half assed chicken pot pie as her single surrender after an hour of creative attempts at coaxing her to try her dinner.

There were tears, and shrieks, and temporary insanity.

But the meal was a victory. I got the whole family at the table, my husband and I practiced team work (“Come on Roo, open your mouth so the train can go into the tunnel. Chugga chugga choo choo!”), and my child licked cauliflower.