Thursday, March 8, 2012

The no thank you bite

Mary Clare is a good eater. She not only eats well, but she readily tries new dishes and is crazy about her fruits and vegetables. I cannot complain.

However, this latest birthday of hers came with a boatload of new opinions. Suddenly Mary Clare won't try things based on appearance, she tells us things she liked before are now yucky and so on and so forth. Dinnertime is still business as usual at our house—no separate meals, no dessert without finishing dinner*—but I was a bit concerned about how to handle the "yucks" and her increasing negative opinions.

Growing up, the rule in our family was if you said "yuck," you got seconds. (Mom and Dad Thole were hard core.) I thought that might be a little early for Mary Clare, so when I read about the "no thank you bite" concept from one of the moms behind Prudent Baby, I decided to give it a go. We put it to the test last night when Mary Clare turned her nose up at her side dish of Stove Top stuffing. Since she scarfed down her meatloaf, steamed broccoli and fresh carrots, I felt a little bad about pushing the carbs, but I decided to try it for the politeness factor alone.

She balked a bit at first, but since the concept was so simple and the food in question was so tame, she eventually gave it a go.

I would love to tell you that Mary Clare declared her love for stuffing and that the promise of a Girl Scout cookie for dessert had nothing to do with her embracing this new concept, but hey, she ate the bite. And when we asked her if she wanted more, she said, "No, thank you." Several times. With increasing intensity. Baby steps, right?

Now if we could just get her to embrace her utensils.

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