Not A Finished Plate

Our goal for food is to help our children have a healthy relationship enjoying the connection it can bring and not feel guilty or controlled by it. 

In our home we use words like “fun food”and “growing food”. Changing the language teaches them that food is not bad and they should not feel bad for eating.

The fun food is things like cookies, cupcakes, cake, and candy. These show up at holidays, events and at friends home. We follow the same principle with juice. We allow our children to have these things even if there is dye in them because we do not want them to be such a forbidden fruit that they will be craving it more, and feel the need to either hide, or feel guilty if they have anything that is a fun treat. 

Fun treats is not something anyone should feel guilty for having. 

Then there is growing food. Which what we cook and bake in our home.

Including them in as much as we can has been helpful too. Having them involved in grocery shopping and cooking lets them be apart of the whole experience. 

When we go grocery shopping I give them jobs. They put things in the cart, help look for food that’s on the list, help unload, sometimes scan, and they have been loving using the chip reader at check out. We then unload at home excited for all the food we bought both fun, and growing. 

When we cook or bake they love gathering what we need, pouring, mixing, and working all the buttons on the cooking appliances. They love trying out the final product. 

Another thing we encourage is them telling us when they are full. Some days it can be five bites of their food other days they finish the entire thing. I want them to learn at an early age to listen to their body. When we run into the situation when they take one bite of their meal and then ask for a fun food, we count five more bites. Or when they choose to not have dinner we tell them to come join us and they can chat with us and have bread but can’t have a fun snack before bed unless they do a try it bite of their dinner. In our home dinner is not just about meal it is about connection. 

With doing all this the boys love soups, hot dishes, pastas, and other favorite dishes. Our key is connection and involvement. Not a finished plate. 

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