Saturday, June 23, 2012

Dinner time battles :(

Have you ever secretly wished for your child to lie?? I know this sounds completely horrible. Let me explain....

I am fairly sure I have the pickiest eater on the planet. I'm certain if there was a world title - Cole would get it. (don't try to argue with me, my therapist says over exaggerating & venting will certainly make me feel better. no, you can't have his name or number.)

At {almost} 7 years old, I'm exhausted trying to get anything other than fast food fare into his tiny little stomach. If you ask him what he likes, the list consist of the following....
  1. Hamburgers (no cheese, ketchup & mustard only)
  2. Hot Dogs
  3. Pizza (no "green stuff", and stick with the idea what pizza cheese isn't the same as regular cheese)
  4. Red Chips (ie..Doritos, name brand - nothing generic)
  5. Cheese Chips (ie..Ruffles Sour Cream & Cheddar)
  6. Cheetos
  7. Green Chips (ie..Sour cream & onion) 
  8. Brownies
  9. Chicken Nuggets
  10. And Mustard. Lots & lots of mustard.
Looking at that list you would think we lived in our car & ate every meal out of the drive through or the convenience store. Truth time...Cole NEVER had jar, store bought baby food. Nope, I made homemade, from scratch from the get-go. My baby was eating spinach, asparagus, avocado all at 5 months. By the time he could eat meat finger foods - I'd have to cook him an entire pork chop to fill him up. He loved salad, would eat cucumbers like a banana, and had no issue finishing my whole plate too. Until he turned 3, then something changed practically overnight.

Everyone told us he would try new things once he got to school. Nope. He would be the only 3,4, & 5 year old sitting at the table content to never try that {insert practically anything served NOT on the top 10 list}. Kindergarten came & he never drank milk at snack, not even once. Refused to eat cafeteria food. So I packed a lunch, same thing every day...4 cold chicken nuggets, apple slices, frozen gogurt (this was a huge success this year, even getting him to try it), pretzels, and a handful of M&M's for a treat. He would only drink apple juice mixed with water, so we invested in lots of thermoses. By the end of the year I could get him to eat a ham sandwich (with mustard, of course) instead of the nuggets...but not much else variation there.

So last month I decided I had officially had it. I was sick & tired of preparing 2 meals every day in this house and I did not want Jacob to pick up his brothers crappy eating habits. New rule...he would eat what I put on his plate. (if you saw the portions I dished out, you would think we live in Ethiopia). After 4 weeks, we are still battling every single meal. He will eat nothing without mustard, and, 99% of the time I have to actually feed him to get him to eat it. Seriously ridiculous. And exhausting. He admits to liking nothing new than what he did before. {sigh}

So Wednesday night as I'm wearing down from the fierce dinner time battle, Jacob has a massive blow out. A bath was most definitely in order. I leave Cole sitting at the table with a bowl that had no more than 2tbsp of mac & cheese (homemade none the less, I'm a darn good cook!), covered in mustard, and, instructions that he must finish these bites before he comes upstairs to join us. Every 2 minutes he would round the corner & ask me if he could be excused from the table and join us upstairs. Everytime my reply was the same "When you finish those two bites, put your bowl in the sink & come upstairs". Pretty open ended for a little guy huh?! Yep, no Mom around, he could so easily have dumped the mac & cheese and walked upstairs with victory on his face.

Did he? No.
Was I secretly wishing he would have to end the ridiculous battle? You bet.

Monday, June 11, 2012

It's the little things...

One of my favorite thing to do as a child was color. I would sit for hours with a coloring book a new box of crayons, meticulously outlining each image before I filled in the color. Priding myself in the gradient color from the outter edge to the center. I felt like such an artist. 

For 6 years I have waited for Cole to want to color.  Around the age of 4 I kind of gave up that he would ever enjoy this hobby. Even at school he refused to do much of anything with coloring or writing. The OT's told me that it truly hurt his hands and that's why he didn't enjoy the activity. We worked & worked & worked...still no interest :( When he was forced to color, he would do everything in green, very sloppy (and purposely sloppy)...almost as if to prove a point. {stinker}

So, you can image how THRILLED I was when Cole started showing interest in coloring over the past couple of months! I would never have guessed that at almost 7 years old he would decide this is something he could enjoy. Jason & I have bought multiple coloring books & new boxes of crayons to the point that he has access to them in the house (upstairs & down), in the car, even when we play outside. If the urge hits..he can color anywhere he wants!

Our little lefty, working hard on his grip!

Trying hard to stay in the lines, and, using a rainbow of colors!

Hey Mom, PICTURE THIS! ha!
While we don't want to burn him out, we do want to encourage coloring, painting, finger painting, etc as much as we can. All these activities will continue to strengthen Cole's fine motor skills & help in handwriting (which continues to be a challenge for him).

I'm so proud to see him working hard, and, enjoying what he's doing!