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Picky Eaters and Vacation Delima

January 17th, 2007 at 06:55 am

My 3 1/2 year old has been picky since she started eating solid foods. I am not sure why or how this happened - we don't eat anything too strange and we have never made seperate meals for her to encourage her to want something different (the exception is when we make something spicey). Now our 18 month old - who used to eat everything in site - is starting to follow in her footsteps. It is getting really frustrating. I don't want to eat chicken or noodles or blueberry pancakes every night! Last night we had cheeseburger soup - one of my hubby's favorite. We also made grilled cheese sandwiches because we knew the girls would probably not eat the soup. There is nothing in this soup that is offensive to a kid - hamburger, potatoes, a few carrots, valveeda cheese and topped with bacon. I put a small amount in front of each girl to have them try it. After a lot of persuasion (and a little bribery - chocolate cake) My 3 year old finally put a bite in her mouth. She started gagging at the first taste of it. My hubby was so pissed! where does a 3 year old learn to gag?

We also got a email from some friends of our asking us to go on a small vacation with them in May. Since I started working on paying off my debt the last few months I have pretty much cleared my savings acct (except for $1500) and used any extra money I have at the end of the month to go towards my car loan. We really do want to go - we haven't been on any type of vacation with the girs yet. I think we will try to go, even though the timing sucks. I don't want to interrupt paying on my car, so I hope I can shave a little money off my household budget (currently at $600 a month) to make it work. I know we can spend less in that category - I just need to do better planning (and quit buying crap we don't need).

7 Responses to “Picky Eaters and Vacation Delima”

  1. nance Says:

    I can sympathize, but I was the same way as a child. Gagging is an involuntary reflex, not learned. It might be the texture of some foods that bother her. I read an article about picky eaters being "super tasters". They can actually have twice as many taste buds as other people. She will get more adventurous as she gets older.

  2. monkeymama Says:

    Agreed - I am a picky eater. IT is not the taste - but the texture will make me gag - I am very picky on texture.

    There's hope. I grew up eating peanut butter but today I am a little more adventurous - hehe. KEep showing her a variety of foods - they will adjust. Unfortunately the younger one will copy the older one.

    My parents let me eat whatever I Want and that was not good. Huge issues I Am still trying to work past because I only eat what i Want, when I want. Dh is a lot more strict with me and I have to set a better example for the kids. The only reason I am eating a little better today. Try a wide variety to find things they like. The rule here is they have to try everything. At least try. OVer time we try not to cook what someone at the table doesn't like. (But no resorting to sandwiches or the same old every night).

    Good luck!

  3. mom-from-missouri Says:

    Normally a kid has to be introduced or exposed to a food 7 times before they will try it, 13 times is what it takes for them to decide they like it (or don't like it). Just keep offering it. Also, cut off the snacks before the meal an hour sooner than normal, so they are a little more hungry.
    What you are describing is a normal stage in child development.
    Or, you can give them choices-do you want corn or beans? Then after they pick, let them help cook it. That instils a sense of pride and they will be more inclined to take a bite.

  4. jriessel Says:

    Thanks for the replys - I think most of the problem is she won't eat things that are mixed together - soups, casseroles. She will eat a hamburger patty, but not ground beef mixed in something. Luckily she will eat most veggies - peas, broccoli, corn, beans and also fruit. I know she is getting her nutrition in for the most part. I asked at her preschool/daycare about her eating habits and her teacher said she was a good eater...I am still trying to figure that one out - I know they probably gear their meals towards kids tastes, but I know they have casseroles also.

    She does like to help out in the kitchen, maybe we need to have her do it more. I usually don't encourage it since she usually entertains the younger child when I am preparing meals Smile.

  5. Ima saver Says:

    I was a picky eater and still am. I did not anything mixed together when I was a child. You are lucky she likes veggies and fruit. I don't and still don't eat anything but meat and starches. That is not healthy, yet I have only been to the doctor twice in my life. so don't worry about them being picky.(My mother use to make me eat certain things and I threw them up until she finally quit)

  6. LuxLiving Says:

    She may be playing off of your and your spouse's reactions whereas the Kinderg. teacher may just put the food out and go on and perhaps does not react in any way to what she does or does not eat.

    I had one picky eater child. I was picky at a very young age myself. I'd just say not to take it sooooo seriously as to get seriously pissed. Just serve nutritious foods, cut in sizes that will work, maybe not so much mixing and let her take what she likes... the beans or noodles theory here. Don't heap up her plate. Put one or two items on a small saucer and if she eats it and wants more okay, if not, there isn't much wasted.

    Just choose your battles carefully because it can become a real battle and one you'll most likely loose your cool over if you pursue it. Proceed with caution, talk w/your pediatrician, etc.

    Good luck!

  7. LuckyRobin Says:

    My daughter was a picky eater when she was little. She still does not like highly flavored food (she likes bland, just like my mother), or weirdly textured food, and won't touch ketchup, mustard, mayo or salad dressings. She has tasted them but does not like them. My son eats everything.

    We had to institute a rule in our house that if anyone "ewwwed" anyone else's food that they had to take a bite of it because the younger one was picking up her habits. That stopped my daughter from saying ew or yuck to foods she didn't like or hadn't tried and kept my son being adventurous.

    We also have a rule that you take one bite of a new food. You are allowed to spit it out in a paper towel and wipe your tongue off if you don't like it and you won't be made to try it again, but you will try it once. And then eat something to take the taste out of your mouth. With this method my daughter ate foods we never dreamed she would and now eats quite normally, if blandly.

    She did not like foods mixed together or touching when she was little either. Now I'll find her heaping chicken, potatoes, green beans in gravy in a pile and eating it mixed up. Now that, I think is ew...but I'd never say it or I'd have to try a bite!

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