Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Outmaneuvering a Four-Year-Old at the Dinner Table, at Least for Today

Steamed kale with poppy seed dressing, avocado, homemade tempeh bacon
Feeding my recently turned four-year-old is tricky business. He has all sorts of opinions about food and is more than happy to not eat anything. At his annual doctor's checkup, he came in at 40 percent for height and 50 percent for weight. I do not consider those numbers to be bad by any means. Different children grow at different rates, and while I'm a bit more heavy than I should be at the moment, I'm fairly average in height, not that it is indicative on what is normal for his growth. When Leo was an infant, I know our numbers matched up exactly at the time. Of course, there are two factors that affect his growth: being a vegan and that he was breastfed for the first two years of his life. He's a solid and energetic boy. He is by no means malnourished. But Anita sees the other children in his Pre-K class, and she is worried about how much bigger than him those children are. I don't see that, though. He looks to me to be right around the middle of the class in size. There is one really large boy in his class with a potbelly, so we can be thankful our son is not headed in the direction of being overweight at the moment. That brings me back to food. One day our son will love a certain ingredient, and the next decide he doesn't want it anymore. This morning for instance, he told me he hates raisins. He has always raved about his breakfast of oatmeal with brown sugar, ground flaxseed, raisins, and dried cranberries, and he has consistently eaten it for years. Now, he is picking out the raisins, so I guess I need to make a modification to the morning ritual. As I was racking my brain to decide what to make my children for dinner, it occurred to me that my son has consistently eaten steamed kale with poppy seed dressing, avocadoes, and homemade tempeh bacon. Bingo, a meal! It was, indeed, a success for both my son and 21-month-old daughter. And now my worries of what to feed them, my son especially, have been allayed for a day.

1 comment:

  1. My boyfriend's (just turned) 4 year old daughter is kind of the same way. She absolutely LOVES noodles. They are her favorite food. She never turns them down and always wants them...except for the time we went to visit my boyfriend's mother in California, and the three of them got noodle soup and I got stuffed eggplant pockets and rice. Then, his daughter threw the biggest fit I'd ever seen, exclaiming that she didn't want noodles, but that she wanted my rice instead. I think, at that age, you're lucky if they eat something, period. *grin*