Sunday, December 21, 2008


Caroline has a good friend at school who we will call Lucy. Lucy's mom, who we'll call Mary, invited us over for dinner tonight. Interestingly, while Caroline has made lots of friends, as have I, since our move this was the first time that our entire family has been invited for a dinner. Somehow, in this time, our girls eating habits have deteriorated to a pretty embarrassing level.

About six months ago, I noticed that I had become the short order chef that I swore I never would be. Pasta, pizza and quesadillas were pretty much the only meals that everyone ate. Most nights I found myself cooking one meal for Rob and me and a separate meal for the girls. Since realizing this, I have known that I had to change our ways but I have been putting it off and putting it off. I have been quite sure that the change was going to be drastic and not pretty. I can't quite imagine doing anything short of offering one meal and nothing else. I imagine a bunch of hungry and grumpy nights before any progress is made. For obvious reasons, this is not a change I have been anxious to make.

Until tonight...

Tonight we were served lasagna, bread and salad. Katherine ate the middle of her bread and Caroline ate Katherine's left over crusts. And of course, they both ate dessert. Fortunately, this is pretty much par for the course for Katherine so she did not make a big deal of it. Her idea of heaven is bread for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Caroline on the other hand kept talking about how much she didn't like the lasagna. I began to think she was expecting me to walk into the kitchen and whip up a batch of mac n' cheese.

Fortunately, Mary and her husband, who we'll call Ted, couldn't have been nicer about the whole thing. I am sure, though, that we have given them plenty of material to talk about. Their daughter had two servings of lasagna, asked to be excused and helped to carry the dishes to the kitchen.

So... game on... By the time the new year arrives, I have pledged to face my fears head on and begin to raise eaters- eaters who we can take with us to family dinners without apology.


At December 21, 2008 at 8:49 PM , Blogger Sadaf Trimarchi said...

Please update on how you do, as the topic of picky kids has become the bane of my existence.

I've reached a semi-truce level in this house.

Lunch, is kid friendly stuff (they are both home at lunch time)

Dinner - I vary it. On nights when I know I'm preparing something spicy or overly exotic, I make them something kid friendly early on. ( I cook a lot, and love spicy food)

Other nights, I make one meal - let's say pasta. And I add two kid friendly sides - like bread, and a side of fruit. This was at the suggestion of their pediatrician, and two years of reading all the kid nutrition books, and putting up with ridiculous tantrums.

I'd say, it works out, that about three nights of the week they eat dinner, and the rest they pick at something on their plate, drink their milk, then go to bed.

My personal gameplan is to transition it, so that by the time the oldest is 5 (he's 4), it's going to be one meal a night. Although, sometimes even that seems way too far from now.

Part of me feels like I should be more indulgent now, when i'm home with them full time. But then I think, how am I going to have the energy to make separate meals every night when I go back to work full time? I don't know. Will check in to see how you do.



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