Sometimes I feel like a huge stick-in-the-mud dictator in what I allow and don't allow my kiddos to eat. No pop, chips, and sweets are important but most of all, I emphasize eating from all the food groups. As I've written about before, by building these habits of healthy eating, I hope to make it easier for my children to make good food choices as they grow.
I do concede and allow sweets and treats for special occasions; mostly birthdays and holidays. Mini Me is pretty clear on what a "special treat" is and because of the consistent ways we have enforced healthy eating will almost never whine when we set limits on junk food. He spent three weeks eating his Easter jelly beans in groups of threes and fours because I wouldn't let him gobble down a handful at a time! And honestly, after the second day, he was grabbing only a few jelly beans at a time because he knew the expectation. No whining!
Nevertheless, I realize I still need to teach him what is healthy and what is not so that he can start to make these good food choices on his own without me around. I won't be making every meal for him, after all.
Using our play food and a few graphics I printed on the computer, we did a "sometimes foods" and "always foods" sort.
He drew a smiley face and a frowny face on two pieces of paper and began to sort.
A strawberry is an always food!
Pop, cookies, and cake are sometimes foods.
It's all sorted!
He did this aaallll by himself (that's why there is one hamburger in the always group, and one hamburger in the sometimes group!). He talked out loud a lot and rationalized his choices as he worked. I only had to help him with the hot dog. I don't buy those and I think he's only had a couple in his life so we had to review what a hot dog really is.
This is a fast and easy activity that is important to review in some capacity over and over. It made me wonder if I also need to re-think my grocery shopping habits. Instead of going while Mini Me is in preschool, maybe he should come with me and work with me as I load the cart. I also need to get better at having him give more input for our weekly menu and grocery list. He's a fabulous eater and I want to keep educating him on healthy food choices... because Heaven knows, I'm still learning how to eat better myself!
The Bad Samaritan
3 hours ago