Sunday, April 19, 2009

Method to my Madness

Everyone has a lazy day once in awhile but I'm coming off about a week of minimal productivity. For whatever reason there was a definite lack of motivation and an overall feeling of blah. Something that has been weighing heavily on my mind the past month, and became very apparent in the last week, is that Stella's diet is lacking some nutrition. I know toddlers are difficult to feed and at times I should cut myself a little slack but lately I've been feeling like even the dogs are eating better than Stella. She has gotten pretty good at sharing her meals with them.

I've realized that where I'm falling short is my planning. Every so often you have to re-evaluate what stage your child is at and what you are doing to support their development. I have to admit, I did a pretty good job when it came to baby food. I pureed tons of fresh fruits and veggies and rarely cracked open a jar. In fact, it was pretty easy. Throw some vegetables in a blender, spoon into ice trays and you've got meals for weeks! I miss those days. As mothers/chefs we have to be much more creative now because our little people are developing big brains and big opinions too. Toddlers are not shy when they don't like something. They'll be sure to find some adorable way to let you know that lunch sucks. Stella's favorite is using her hand like a windshield wiper on her tray, resulting in food every where except her mouth.

I'm attempting to approach this mommy challenge with a new attitude. Instead of looking for the easy, surefire meal successes: mac-n-cheese, chicken nuggets, diced hot dogs and PB&J, I am planning to make my life more difficult. Join me won't you?! My first plan is going to be just that; an actual plan. I will try my best to avoid the "oh crap its lunch time, what am I going to give her to eat". I'm thinking this might be a good place to start. The next step is to revert back to what worked before and that was the purees. I got so tired of putting vegetables on Stella's tray just for her to play with them that I quit offering them to her, not good. She needs those veggies! I picked up a copy of Jessica Seinfeld's cookbook "Deceptively Delicious", I'm sure you've heard of it. Her method is to stock your freezer with pureed fruits and veggies and add them to meals your kids already like.

I'm hoping that the book might help spark some creativity in my kitchen and provide some better nutrition for my growing girl. Shocking as it may seem after reading this post, I'm actually a pretty decent cook. So if I come up with any yummy recipes of my own I'll be happy to share. If you can relate to my struggles I hope this encourages you to try and find healthy, nutritious meals to feed your children. If not, you can at least laugh at how lame I am.

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