Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Ryan in the Kitchen

Hey, guess what? I have a picky eater! I really did try my best to keep this from happening but somehow it did.  I can't blame him...when I was younger I was ridiculously picky.  Then I realized all the yummy stuff I was missing out on! Anyhow, I think one of the issues that we had is that Ryan, in general, isn't a huge eater. He doesn't really care for snacks and when it is mealtime he rarely (if ever) cleans his plate. If he gets a good five bites in we consider that a success.
Looking back - last year (age 2) was the most difficult foodwise. We often threatened him with bedtime or timeout at the dinner table, tried bribing him with desert, and sometimes we would breakdown and just make him something we knew he would eat. Ugh, although there are still nights he fights to eat, overall his eating/trying things has improved dramatically. I am not sure what exactly changed but we have been so proud of him recently - trying all sorts of things. This is what works for us (and I swear we tried this last year and it didn't), but for now, it's simple,  he has to take ONE bite of everything. If he doesn't like it, he doesn't have to eat anymore. And that's the rule. And I would say 75% of the time he ends up liking it. I'm not gonna lie and say it's perfect...there is still a little bribing going on but overall he is eating a larger variety of things and we are all much happier.

And then there is Grayson - my happy little eater. This boy can eat. And I love it. But part of me still worries about him turning into a picky eater as I am trying my best to make him a variety of things and not take the easy way out with hot dogs (already his favorite), PB&J, and grilled cheese. Enter Weelicious. My new favorite cookbook. The first couple things I tried were the baby frittatas, chicken meatballs and mexican rice balls.  Anyhow, Grayson ate everything. Hopefully he will continue to be an adventurous eater. Ryan liked the fritatta and LOVED the chicken meatballs. I would say the Mexican Rice balls weren't much of a hit...

I also made the Very Berry Muffins for breakfast. We renamed them moose muffins (because Ryan really likes If You Give a Moose a Muffin) and of course Ryan wanted jam with his. 

So not only do I love this cookbook for ideas (and the fact that the recipes are super easy) but it's also fun for Ryan! He really loves to help out in the kitchen. I cannot get away with using any type of mixer, processor, juicer without him running over say "I want to help, I want to help".  It can be  difficult with dinner (because I am usually holding Grayson with one arm) but I try and let him help whenever possible. One thing that I am trying to do is sit down with him and pick out recipes that he wants to try. I am hoping that by having him help prepare the food he will be more inclined to try more things.  This week Ryan picked out Cheesy Waffles, Cinnamon roll sushi and chocolate peanut butter pudding. I am going to use the cheesy waffles as sandwich sides and fill with cream cheese and ham.

Making peanut butter pudding!

The cheesy waffles were super fun to make - he loves the waffle iron!

We also made spinach cake muffins. I knew it was successful when he wanted to lick the bowl!

Perfect little addition to his school lunches!

Anyhow, I love cooking all of these fun recipes with Ryan - they are healthy and easy. I am happy to have fun school lunches for them - trust me, lunches are difficult to change up day after day! 

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