Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Fuss About Food

I made a lovely meal plan for the week on Monday morning. I spent a little extra time considering what I had in the cupboards, and made my plan based on things that I already had on hand. Imagine that. After making my shopping list, I got the kids off to school, packed the youngest into the car, and off we headed to the grocery store (the one with the trucks.) I've decided that the fact that the groceries are slightly more expensive is OK with me because the truck shopping-cart makes my time at the store with an obnoxious almost three year old, slightly easier.

We had an ideal trip. I found everything on my list for a week's worth of dinners and we had no melt-downs. We were out of the store in 30 minutes having only spent $48, and having only purchased things that were on my list.

Oh, it all started so well.

We are now on day three of the week, and so far I have made ONE of my planned meals. And the kids hated it. They ate Cheerios for dinner (and I've been finding those crunched up little buggers all over the house ever since.) I'm so tired of fixing meals that three of us will eat, while the other two have peanut butter on bread.

There we have it, my kids are picky eaters. But, not in any normal way. My oldest loves calamari and broccoli, but would rather DIE than eat corn or a hamburger. My boy adores Chinese food and mujhadra (a middle eastern lentil & rice dish) but refuses to sit at the table if macaroni and cheese (even the awesome homemade stuff) is being served. And then there's that littlest one.... she just doesn't eat. Her entire diet consists of yogurt, ham, pirate's booty, bread (but don't you dare toast it or put butter on it) and water. Sometimes, she'll beg me for an apple (cut up, no peels) and after all that effort will look disparagingly at it, and attempt to throw it in the garbage. She's 27 puny pounds of obstinance.

Every once in a while, the stars will align and I'll create a meal that everyone likes. (The last time it was chicken & broccoli stir fry, but that's no assurance that if I make the exact same thing again anyone will eat it.) Even when that miraculous event occurs, I'll be half way through loading up the dishwasher after dinner and someone will come in and utter my two least favorite words in the English language, "I'm hungry." AAAAAAHHHHHH.

I'll admit that from time to time I'll read the blog of another woman who has young children, and I'll hear about them eating salmon or Swiss chard and how much they LOVE it, and I think, "yeah, right."

So, here's my question to the universe at large. How do you feed your children nutritious meals that all of them will actually eat? And then, to make matters all the more complicated, how do you lose weight while doing so? Inquiring minds want to know.

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