A long time ago, I wrote a post about competition at lunch time. I still have people come up to me and say, “Hey, that actually works!” I can’t seem to find the post at the moment. But, basically, I wrote that to induce competition and reduce pickiness, I often put the kids’ lunch on one big platter.
My kids will eat anything, just about. I attribute my success to one basic principle: I do not believe they’ll let themselves starve (though they’ve all threatened to at one point or another). I almost never say, “Sit there until you finish your dinner!” cause I want eating, and even vegetables, to stay fun. I do, however, say, “No dessert unless you finish your dinner.” and “That’s all I’m making until the next meal….no snacks.” That seems to work well enough around here.
Meal time can be manic in most MSC households, though, so I’m offering two more “tricks” today.
First, if you’d like a little downtime while your kids eat a meal (probably breakfast or lunch), chop up some quick lunch meat, cheese, fruit, etc., and then pick one of them to host a party for the others. In my kitchen, I have a drawer full of cloth napkins, candles and fake flowers that the girls like to arrange for tea time.
On Saturday morning, Tiny Dancer hosted a brunch. She even made cards for her guests!
The party lasted almost an hour. And even her brothers used appropriate, “tea” voices the whole time. Well, almost the whole time. They may have abandoned ship before the event was officially over.
I cleaned my kitchen and did a load of laundry….while they made a very small, and mostly contained, new mess:)
Then, of course, if you want some free time without the cleanup….
Pack them a picnic and send them outside! No, this isn’t our yard. I cheated with “park picnic pictures”*.
*Try saying that ten times fast.
How about you? How have you reduced or eliminated the meal time battles at your house?
I guess I’ll write your birthday post now.
Actually, this is the post that I meant to write for you last year….on that great day that you turned one. Now, you’re two (and everything that that implies). And you’re huge. Huge. Huge like the other four were when you were born.
You don’t look like a baby anymore. Your thighs aren’t quite this chubby….
I can hardly believe how little you were.
And yet, somehow, I still think you should be this small.
With your birth, I became the mother to brothers. I became a vlogger. I almost died. And I fell in love [loving nursing/holding/changing one baby as much as I’d loved mothering two].
I’ll never, ever for the rest of my life, forget the first time you looked up at me.
It was love at first sight. And, come to think of it, it was kinda like when you woke me up on Saturday morning (at 5:45 am), declaring, “It’s bweffas time!!” (your face two inches from mine). And even though I was tired and a little cranky, my heart still skipped a beat or two.
Just like it does when you whisper you love me.
And just like it does when you scream it.
You’re still my miracle baby. You’re still the glue. And Mommy still loves you more than life….
And that goes for Daddy too.
My mom had the week off for spring break, and she decided to spend it with us. She’s been painting my kitchen and living room, teaching phonics lessons and watching the kids while I work (and nap). So, yeah, it’s been a pretty good week for me.
Today, we dragged her along on the day out that I’ve been promising the kids for months. And man, did we cram a lot of fun into today! First, we went to my favorite restaurant where I celebrated my birthday with a plate of the world’s best chicken enchiladas. That’s the Guadalajara Grill in Taos, NM….just in case anyone is wondering.
Then, we grocery shopped (which wasn’t fun but was desperately needed).
We watched “Mars Needs Moms” (the first movie we’ve seen in a year and a half)! We gave it fourteen enthusiastic thumbs up (but we might be a little easy to please)! As far as the movie goes, I kind of agree that, without women, men would live in a heap of trash. Ha. Though I’m not sure what message they were actually trying to convey (neither do I really care…because we still loved it). I’m the tiniest bit sad that the “best mom” was the one who rewarded her son with zombie movies. Oh well, the broccoli vomiting cat was hilarious. And we’ve adopted the “unauthorized dog pile!!” phrase.
After the movie, it was time for ice cream.
Almost immediately after this picture, they began running laps around Baskin Robbins. So, I scooped up my bag and my
baby two year old and we headed to the van.
Where everyone crashed and fell asleep….and mom and grandma drove home happy.
Baby Bear will be two on Saturday (meaning I’ll be thirty-two on Sunday). My birthdays don’t seem to phase me much; but my kids’ birthdays, on the other hand, are dripping with sentiment and charm.
So, yeah, I’ve been thinking a lot about the past two years lately. With the exception of the past few months (which have also had many wonderful moments), the past two years have probably been the best of my life. And even though I believe that better years are ahead, here’s how I remember the past two….
Thanks for being along for the ride!