26 July 2007


So many great comments on the boring toddler feeding post! Thank you.

Here's my plan for tonight:

Give them all their food at once, at least what they can self-feed (tonight that would be some kind of fruit, pasta/red sauce/ricotta casserole, some kind of veggie, and Cheerios or crackers or some kind of starch). Let them eat what they want while I wash up daycare cups and containers. Food that goes on the floor stays there.

Once I'm done cleaning up the daycare stuff and they are done eating and have moved on to playing with their food, wipe down trays. Give them each a spoon and a bowl with some of their oatmeal in it. Feed them the oatmeal while they try to feed themselves (with occasional success!) Use the "three strikes, you're out" rule with spoons and bowls on the floor, emphasizing that "spoons/bowls stay in your hand or on the tray," and "if you throw that again, it stays there." Continue until oatmeal is gone or meltdown ensues. Clean up toddlers and release them from the torture that is dinner.

We'll see how it goes! I feel like the most important thing is to be consistent. If I'm going go with "three strikes, you're out" on utensil throwing, then I need to do that every. single. time.

I don' t think I was entirely clear in my last post about the suction cup bowls. I do expect that the kids will be able to un-suction them. But the bowls the kids have now slide all over their trays when they try to scoop something onto their spoons. They get the "spoon into food, food on spoon, spoon into mouth" concept pretty well, but they often can't achieve "food on spoon" because the bowl is sliding all over the place. Then they get frustrated and throw the whole shebang. I think if they can accomplish getting some food on the spoon, they might be less frustrated by the whole experience. Maybe? Maybe.

I talked to my mom for a long time last night and she pointed out that some of this evening kid crankiness could be due to going back to daycare this week. They love their daycare, but being there makes them quite tired in a way that they don't get tired when they are at home. Good insight, Mom! I know this is just a rough patch, made rougher by me feeling like crap due to having a cold.

I am so tired today. I didn't sleep well at all due to being all stuffed up and drippy-nosed. It didn't occur to me until about 5:00 am that since I'm no longer nursing, I can take cold medicine! Revelation. Of course, I don't have any in the house. Will go get some at lunch.

Also, I am seriously behind at work. Yikes! Part of me fails to care, but that's not good. It's so hard for me to focus lately. I just want to hibernate: read, write, be home. I think it's a grief thing. Wish I could take a leave of absence, but not sure that's possible.

I've been doing art therapy twice a month with a social worker from Early Intervention. Last time I saw her, I made a mandala. The exercise was very therapeutic for me, and I've been wanting to do another one or more. No time! Wish I could stay home and make mandalas all day. Sigh. Maybe I could just take an isolated day off, but I have a big deadline on 6 August, so I don't see that happening before then.


Kristin said...

My two cents is that you don't need to give them the cheerios/pirates booty/snacky food with dinner. Pasta, fruit and veggie is plenty. My theory is that the kids should eat what we eat, and we never have cheerios on the side with pasta. Anyway, then they won't be tempted to eat all the snacky stuff and not eat any dinner.

halfmama said...

Sounds like a great plan! Consistency, like you said, is key. For all of your sanities.

We bought trays (like school lunch trays) with dividers in them. They fit somewhat snugly on their highchair trays, and I put 'bowl' foods in each of the dividers. Maybe that would work...?

I also got the spoons with the loops for handles. They were some of the best purchases I made. The twins were able to pick up foods MUCH better with those and bowls didn't slide all around as much.

Good luck!

Anonymous said...

LEAVE OF ABSENCE...I think you need. Just a lurker though and follow you.

bg's Little Sis said...

Lots going on, in life as well as in your thoughts.

On the food thing, it'll just improve, slowly, but it will...the divider trays helped us a ton with Izzy this go around.

Thinking of you on all other fronts as well.

lots of love!

Yankee T said...

The spoons with the loop handles are great. The suction cup bowls are great. And you are a great mama. You're right about the 3 strikes and you're out, except I might reduce it to 2. They can't count. They won't know which one will be the one that does it, so my advice (to take or leave, of course) is the first time gets you a warning, and then you're done.
You must be exhausted in all the ways. Sending big hugs.

Anonymous said...

My kiddo did much better self-feeding if there was a fork on the tray. He'd use both, seeing which worked better with a particular food. Good luck!