Okay, so you should totally let them eat cake because, seriously, cake is delicious. But what I should call this is let them eat fruit…and veggies. Here’s what I mean.
My kids eat all the freaking time. I get that they’re growing and I need to make meals that will give them the nutrients they need to grow at the appropriate rate but we could have just finished breakfast where I served eggs, toast, sausage and a banana and as they put their plates in the dishwasher one of them asks for a snack. Really? A snack? You literally still have bread crumbs in your teeth from the breakfast you just ate and you want a snack?! While I will usually say no to the snack immediately following breakfast, I know the question will be asked again within the hour so I can’t avoid it forever.
We have a few go to snacks here: applesauce pouches, granola bars, fruit snacks and assorted mini bags of cracker snacks. All of these are found in bins on the counter and are usually reserved for lunches or mid-morning or after nap snacks. After they have taken one, sometimes two, of those snacks and tell me they are still hungry, it is time for fruits and veggies. Our favorites here are apples, bananas and green peppers. We always have them on hand and they are usually easy enough for the kids to get for themselves.
And even though it’s frustrating to hear them going for their fourth or fifth snack, I never say no to fruits or veggies. If we are close to dinner I will let them know how much time is left and that I’d like them to wait, but if they decide they can’t, I will still let them have it. This will, occasionally, mean they do not eat as much dinner as I’d like. But I also know that what they have eaten has a lot of nutrients they also need in their bodies. If they do not eat their dinner I remind them there is no more food until breakfast the next morning and then suggest they try a few more bites. But when they choose to stop eating anyway, and do the same thing for the next few days, they quickly realize it would be in their best interest to cut back on the pre-dinner snacks.
The thing I’ve learned: always offer fruits and veggies. For one, they learn to like more varieties of these food groups (how we discovered our kids love raw green pepper) and then when you kid decides that week that they no longer like chicken, you know they’ve at least got something healthy in their tummies.
Hi, I'm Rebecca
I’m a wife, mom to 5 kids, former choir teacher, Christian and advice giver? I can honestly say I never expected to be the one giving advice when I so frequently ask for it, but the advice I’ve received is so valuable and must be shared! Here are some of the things I’ve learned so far!