In this post, I started talking about how I just finished reading the book French Kids Eat Everything by Karen Le Billion and how much that book made me change my prospective on how to feed my toddler. The real reason I started reading that book was because my husband and I were having a huge problem with little Ms E throwing her dinner, plate, cup and utensils at us [more often then not just at my husband] during dinner. She wasn't hungry and wouldn't really touch her food, except to throw it at us that is. This behavior was not acceptable to either of us but I wasn't quite sure how to make her stop. Do I punish her and make her go to time out? Not giving her dinner at all? Take her food away and make her leave the table? I wasn't sure what the right answer was or how to proceed.
Then I read this book and it changed the way I thought about feeding my daughter and I realized that I was making her act out in the way. Yes, me!
And here I thought I never did anything wrong!
I would let her snack and graze all day long. We would go for a walk and I would give her some food. In the car and she would get another snack. Snuggle time while reading books was yet another handful of this or that. I thought I was doing the right thing by only giving her organic and healthy snacks but I was actually making it so that at meal time she wouldn't be hungry and she would then just want to play and act out. So like the French parents do, I took her snacks away. No not all of them, just the grazing snacks. So now I try very hard to only give her one simple snack in the morning and another one in the afternoon.
Here is what I aim to make her eating schedule look like;
8:00am - Breakfast
10:00am - First snack with fruit and cheese or hummus and cut up veggies
12:00pm - Lunch
4:00pm - Second snack with a pouch of fruit and veggie puree, crackers and peanut butter or yogurt.
6:00pm - Dinner
This does vary and sometimes she doesn't need her snacks because she just isn't hungry. Sometime she is starving after her snack and I try very hard to not give in a let her have a snack. She just has to wait until the next meal time. The French parents in the book do not give their children the morning snack but I decided that for now, she did need a little something before her lunch.
After a few days of transitioning out of the grazing method of eating, you know what happened? She stopped throwing her food at us and starting eating it. All of it. She is actually hungry when she sits down to a meal now and she doesn't want to waste any of her delicious food.
Simple Leek Puree
2 organic Leeks, white and light green parts only
1 small white potato
Wash leeks and potatoes. Cut potatoes into small chunks and place in steamer basket for 7 minutes. Meanwhile chop leeks in 1 inch sections adding to the potatoes and cook for another 5 minutes. Let cool slightly and then puree in food processor or blender until smooth and creamy.
Makes roughly 20 ounces and will keep in fridge for 5 days or freezer for 2 months.