Pie for breakfast?!?!

May 17, 2010 at 7:46 pm Leave a comment

I really had to share this story that I read at a new favourite blog: Notes from the Cookie Jar.  Karen is a mom blogger who has been motivating us to follow along with Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution.  She even got a twitter message from the great one himself!  Check out her blog, she has some great ideas.  With her permission I have reprinted a recent post about feeding her 7-year old healthy food and the impact it had on him as a child, he’s a bigger kid now and still makes healthy choices.  This post really resonated with me because  I believe that if you give kids healthy food, they will eat it, something I think parents are forgetting to remember as we are inundated with processed, sweetened food (although I don’t like to call it that, it isn’t really food you know!).  I love her story about staying with a family who really didn’t share her ideas of healthy nutrition… I won’t go on… just read it yourself!

“Oh, he’s not a good breakfast eater,” she commented as she handed the 7 year old a plate with a slice of apple pie for breakfast.

“Mom, can I have pie?” Jake looked at his bowl of cereal and back to me. We were guests in this home, after all, and I didn’t want to be rude. On the other hand, I was not going to give up my healthy eating convictions, either.

“We don’t eat pie for breakfast. You can have some after lunch if you want, okay?”

He watched as Aiden tucked into his pie and went back to his cereal, chewing thoughtfully. I could tell the wheels were turning.

Years ago, we were on vacation and staying with some friends in the USA. At the very beginning of our years of road trip adventure, I was not used to the cultural differences that came with the territory; and in this case, the food differences. They were HUGE.

A boy the same age was in the house, and it soon became clear that soda was the drink of choice for every meal, and desserts were often in place of real food, all because he wasn’t a “good eater.” He was the dreaded picky child.

Not wanting to offend, we quietly told Jake the ground rules; no pop unless Mom or Dad had some, and then we’d share a little. Real food before desserts, just like at home. Jake watched in silence as Aiden tucked into his apple pie that morning, assessing the situation as only a 7 year old can.

Then came lunch. The boys had been swimming, and hungrily scrambled up into their seats at the counter.

“I’m having chocolate CAKE!” Aiden waved his fork around in excitement in Jake’s direction. “Chocolate cake is the BEST!” Suddenly, I spoke up from where I stood, fixing Jake’s lunch.

“Let’s see, Jake. You have grapes, some cherry tomatoes, broccoli, cheese, and a bit of sliced hot dog,” with flourish, I set the plate in front of him. “Would there be anything more, sir?” Normally I would forgo hot dogs, but at this point there was nothing else that was very healthy.

There they sat; Aiden with his slice of cake, Jake with his fruit and veggies, and the weirdest thing happened. Aiden stopped eating. He put down his fork. He sat and watched as Jake downed broccoli and grapes, asking for more. Finally, waving around a tiny green tree, Jake turned to him.

“Wanna try one? They’re good, you know.” Aiden took it from Jake’s outstretched hand as though the vegetable was foreign to him, popped it in his mouth, and began chewing.

What happened next was completely unbelievable.

The cake suddenly forgotten, Aiden pushed it aside and asked for a plate of fruit and veggies, which I promptly fixed for him. As the boys finished lunch and ran out to play, the cake sat forlornly, it’s sugary goodness completely forgotten. Neither boy, even with the promise of cake after lunch, even bothered to ask for a slice.

Picky eater? Maybe. When shown by example and given the opportunity though, your kids just might surprise you.


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