15 October, 2008

Feeding a Toddler

You know, it's kinda funny. I heard several people comment when they heard I was making our baby food about how much work it is (or how they don't have the time)... But now that my days of blending & pureeing are over I'm missing them. It was so much simpler back then!

Steam food.. bake food.. blend & serve (or freeze & serve). Even when she started doing finger foods (early mind you)... wasn't much different.

But now... I've gotta think about meals... and how much she needs of what... Nothing is pre-prepared anymore... So I'm having to cook 3 times a day. Thankfully she's still nursing so I don't have to stress too much about snacks & stuff yet (although she does get some).

It does help that she can eat most of the same things we do... but Jas has a crazy work schedule so we don't eat at the same time every night - and some nights she's in bed already... So I have to make her something early. We're trying to get that straightened out...

Any tips for how to make things easier? Advice? Anything? I could seriously use some help lol.


Mama Kalila said...

Blogger Steph said...

For the most part, I just feed the kids whatever I'm eating. It's rare that I have something they can't have. I make sure that there's one vegetable at each meal but I don't worry too much about making sure they get enough of each food group. Kairi has been on veggie strikes, meat strikes, and bread strikes all at various times. In the end my pedi kept reminding me that it's not that they eat enough of each specific thing each day, but that over the course of the week that they eat well.

The one meal I primarily struggle with is breakfast b/c I would rather just eat a bowl of cereal but neither child is good at that. I have offered the Gerber cereal bars w/ a thing of yogurt and a piece of whole wheat bread for breakfast on multiple occasions. I also will chop up potatoes, tomatoes, and/or onions and add it to a scrambled egg, which occasionally gets topped w/ grated cheese.

Grilled cheese sandwiches are favorite foods and easy to make. I add slices of tomatoes to their plates when I do that.

Macaroni and tomatoes are a good lunch that both kids love. I use multi-grain pasta.

I've been known to steam and freeze various veggies (think bell peppers, yellow squash, zucchini, tomatoes, broccoli, carrots, etc) and grill and freeze chicken in large quantities. And then when I'm in a rush for lunch, I make a pasta and just thaw the chicken and veggies out. Season the pasta w/ olive oil, garlic, pepper and salt and then throw the veggies and chicken into it. Sometimes I'll add parmesan to it as well. I don't always add chicken to this either. It's still a good meal w/o it. Or you could add diced tomatoes to the pasta w/ the veggies.

Sandwiches are easy and Kairi loves lunch meat (I heat it first). Alex isn't a fan, but if I make it a turkey melt or something like that he'll eat it. And turkey melts are easy w/ the George Foreman grill. I'm sure that they're also easy on the stove just like you'd do a grilled cheese, but I never bother since I have the george forman.

My mom taught me to think of every meal this way-- a balanced meal contains protein, a green vegetable and a starch. I have modified it some. Every meal is a protein, a green/yellow veggie some sort of dairy (b/c it's a struggle to get enough in my kids) and a whole grain starch, but it's the same concept. I buy the Barilla multi-grain pasta and cook a LOT with it b/c it has extra protein in it. So that's two birds with one stone. I cook a lot of broccoli b/c of the added calcium.

I also try to plan my meals out in advance. It helps if on Sunday I write down ideas for every day of the week. That way if I change my mind it's ok, but I always have a back up.

October 18, 2008 5:12 PM
Blogger Steph said...

Wow, that's a novel. lol

October 18, 2008 5:13 PM
Blogger Mama Kalila said...

Thanks! Those are some really great suggestions/ideas. I need to start combining our stuff more often (we did great w/ that so far this weekend other than dinner tonight - which was an accident... people supposed to come over haven't called so our foods not done yet & she had to eat) if for no other reason than us eating better. There's days I make her something great for lunch & I just eat junk. Not good...

I try to plan out meals too & lately it's been failing miserably every time I try lol. We're working on it though.

I have tons of frozen veggies, so that always helps. I worry that I do too many green veggies (well, is probably just a good amount of them) & not enough of the other colours lol... I try to incorporate the others when I can.

We do a lot of pasta too... I've got pictures of her dinner tonight (pasta w/ cheese & spinich) that I'm putting on the other blog, was halarious! But I haven't done sandwhiches for her other than grilled cheese...

Scrambled eggs happen a lot here too w/ random things thrown in. Yesterday we did them w/ mushrooms, cheese, onions, garlic & cut up beef hotdogs (quartered). She went through her portion in minutes & got seconds out of what was supposed to be Jas' (oops lol).

Breakfast is actually pretty easy here.. she's happy w/ cheerios unless she sees me eating a diff cereal. Specifically the Kashi one w/ dried strawberries which we're holding off on introing. She loves eggs, loves pancakes, french toast was a huge hit (and I was planning to write a post on that - so glad I finally remembered lol)...

I think my issue is I freaked when reading something on the food groups, what they should have thing because I really didn't know any of that... We've always done a veggie or two plus main course... Thinking about it, usually has a starch & protein - I just hadn't thought about it... Plus that's added to us getting behind on dishes, Jas' one chore... I've been trying to help him out w/ it & I'm just plain not good at it so they have to be rewashed & uggh. We got caught up though, so that's good lol. But yeah, hard to figure out what to make when that happens. I'm glad it doesn't often.. and hope it doesn't again anytime soon.

And looks like I wrote a novel too lol

October 18, 2008 8:04 PM
Blogger Mama Kalila said...

Oh & one thing I forgot... the other prob we're having is that our microwave is catching random veggies on fire! No metal involved... just frozen veggies. If I put them in to make life easier, they spark... Not cool...

October 18, 2008 8:45 PM