Eating

food, Svara

Like most toddlers, Svara has her ups and downs with food and eating.  Sometimes she eats little, sometimes she eats a lot.  Sometimes she will only eat certain foods, and sometimes she will surprise us by eating something new.

But I’ve never heard of this:

A couple months ago Svara was really not eating well.  But I found she would eat more if I let her watch videos of herself while eating.  So she’d sit on my lap and I’d feed her.  When she was full she’d let me know and then we’d go play.  But I didn’t like it.  I have never let Svara watch tv, figuring there were better things for her to do to occupy her mind.  Yet here I was letting her watch videos to get her to eat. I felt like a hypocrite every time.  It wasn’t every meal.  Usually it was breakfast and snack and then she’d eat lunch and dinner with us at the table, though she often wouldn’t eat much.

So three days ago I decided to kick the  habit.  She’s still allowed to watch a few video clips of herself (her current favorites are from our zoo visit), but no eating while watching.  I’m trying to encourage her to feed herself more as well.  Since she often tries to get out of her high chair, I decided she can have her snack and some meals at her new little Ikea table, and I sit with her.  She does fine with this as long as she’s excited about the food.  Like this cookie (I made this recipe using less sugar) and raisins:

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Or this icecream: (made from avocado, silken tofu, coconut milk, carob powder, dates)

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But if Svara is not excited about the food then she is easily distracted and would rather get up and play.  However, if I start reading her a book she sticks around and lets me feed her.  It’s really weird.  She goes from totally refusing to eat to opening her mouth for bite after bite as long as I’ve got an interesting book for her to see.  It’s better than watching videos, at least we’re interacting, but still…

I know, I could just let her eat when she wants to eat.  The thing is, when I mash a banana, it’s got to be eaten then and there.  I can’t save it for later 😛   And if she’s not hungry, then how comes she’s able to eat two whole mashed bananas (as long as I’m showing her a book)?  I don’t know.  She’s a conondrum.

I remember when I was a kid I used to LOVE to read books at the table.  It wasn’t usually allowed, but I tried.  Maybe she got this from me.  But isn’t she a little too young to start?

Anyone with similar stories or advice?

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One thought on “Eating

  1. I remember a phase with Isabela where she would only eat if she was holding a toy. I got annoyed with that too and cut out the toys and after a few days she got over it. I also have a similar issue with Diego using the potty. He’ll fight me the whole way to the potty some days, but the instant he’s sitting down on the potty, he’s use it. I think kids are just so interested in everything else there is to do that they don’t want to stop their play to eat, use the potty or nap! They just want to keep playing!

    I read this really great book called “To Kindle a Soul” that has an AMAZING chapter all about the scientific research about TV (none of it good). I quit the TV habit with my kids after that, but since Fiona was born, I’ve brought it back in for survival! I hope to phase it out again in a few months.

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