If you’re like me, and have a little kid(s) then you know what a struggle it can be to please everyone at meal time. Our daughter is a pretty good eater, though she is prone to change her likes and dislikes seemingly on a whim. The problem is that what she likes and what we can eat usually diverges and causes a bit of a drama, especially at dinner time.
The solution to said drama is a never ending journey for many a household, and sadly I do not have an answer for you. I do however have a few ideas that have worked for us, at least until our daughter changes her mind again.
I started teaching our daughter a few kitchen tips when she turned five, I had tried earlier but it didn’t quite stick. We started easy, like having her place the food on her plate. Then we moved up a bit to actually building the food together, she loves mixing and flipping food in the pan. I am now trying to help her chop food, but that is pretty nerve racking (for me!). Another thing I am helping her learn is about food nutrition, and she seems pretty interested. I love the way she lights up when she learns her meal suggestions are healthy! Kids are the best!
You’re the boss, but kids get a say, too
“You’ll eat what I put in front of you and like it!” Oh boy, that is a fun one to hear. I’m sure everyone has one of those memories locked away somewhere, just itching to come out when your kid turns up their nose at dinner. Now I agree that our kids should be thankful for what we provide for them, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have a say. I am pretty sure if someone put a plate of *enter food you can’t stand here* and told you to eat it or else, you might not react too well either. So I try and work on our weekly menu as a family, everyone has a say, within reason at least.
Turn everything off, no tablet, no phone!
Talk like you like each other, because you know what? You do, and it’s a great time to see what everybody’s been up to.
A dish for the family
Okay, here is a little meal our family likes to do together, we make “platters”. Super easy, super fun and it’s family time while learning to eat healthy. Go to the store together and discuss what looks good and what will taste good together. Talk about why you can’t just have pizza and call it good, why we need fruits and veggies in our diet every day.
After you are back from the store set up a “platter station” where everybody can reach all of the goodies for their platter. Let the kids be as creative as they want, remember the word “art” in culinary arts is there for a reason.
Then, when everyone is done, take pictures to remember what you did and if you have a safe place online to post the pictures, you know the kids will love that. The picture for this article is from a platter our five year old daughter made, and she couldn’t be more proud of it.
So find a compromise with your kids, enjoy these moments because they fly by, and finally have that relaxing meal you always dream about. Namaste