Wednesday, January 30, 2008

The Eating Game

I'm not sure what happened to my middle child, who is now 9 years old. Sometime between the ages of two and three, he dramatically changed his eating habits. Alex went from being the "Baby Who Ate Broccoli" to "Mr. Picky Eater".

As a toddler, Alex had a pretty diverse pallet. He ate steak, broccoli, mashed potatoes, chicken, hot dogs, apples, oranges, grapes, ... the list goes on. One by one he developed food phobias and dropped to only a handful of items he would eat.
The current food list:

Breakfast: Poptarts, Eggo Waffles, Chocolate Chip Pancakes with chocolate syrup and Fruit Loops (dry, no milk).
Beverages: Milk, Pop, Orange Juice, Chocolate Milk & Lemonade
Lunch: Orange Creamsickle flavored Yoplait Yogurt or Cheez-its with Peanut Butter
Dinner: Pizza, Pasta with olive oil or Wendy's Chicken Nuggets ( no substitutes ).

What the Doctor Says:

Two years ago, we expressed our concern to our pediatrician. He told us not to worry, that our son was growing and was fine. Our doctor went on to tell us that he was also a picky eater as a child and eventually outgrew his food issues. He would inspire more of our confidence if our doctor was taller than 5'6" and had a healthier pallor. Of course our son was in the room and loves to quote the good doctor.

The Final Straw

This past weekend we spent the day at a family function. We were surrounded by good food. At a lunch buffet, all our problem child ate was a peanut butter cookie and for dinner - several glasses of lemonade. He did not touch his plate of made to order pasta.

Alex was already famous with my family for his plate of pretzels meal at Thanksgiving dinner, refusing to partake in any of the bountiful feast. I was angry that not only were special accommodations made for this past Saturday night's dinner, he did not take one bite. Lack of appetite was the excuse.

Food Fear Factor
As a last ditch effort before enlisting the help of a therapist, I decided to make eating a sport at our house.
Last night I sat down with the boys and had them help me design an eating game. We voted on a food list by food group. Two out of three boys were needed to approve each item on the list. We devised a point system with weekly prizes for meeting goals.

Today was the first day. I started out with easy foods and had some success. Breakfast was half a bagel with either butter or cream cheese. Dinner was Macaroni and Cheese. I also had applesauce and Bratwurst as additional options. Dessert was apple slices with caramel sauce.

While my other two boys are ahead in points as they are better eaters, I was able to get my finicky boy to try everything without a big fight. I am optimistic we can make some progress and perhaps come up with some techniques that work. I've tried the "Sneaky Chef" method of altering foods. This type of deception does not work well for us. I prefer taking the more straight forward approach and having my boys be part of the process.

If we succeed, perhaps we'll write a book!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Show Yourself Sunday

I was at a family function all day yesterday and I missed posting Sign-in Saturday. If anyone stumbles upon this post today, please sign in and leave a short message. It will make my day!
I will be glad to return the kindness on your blog, if you have one.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Fight Club

I saw a headline today that gave me hope. Spouses who fight live longer. Suppressed anger creates more stress which can help shorten lives.

I guess my husband and I will live long. Or will it just seem longer???

The Ultimate Reality Show

Recently I have read where Denise Richards wants to have a reality show that would involve her life as a single mother. Her young daughters, 3 year old Sam and 2 year old Lola would be involved. Charlie Sheen, Denise's ex-husband and father of the girls, objects to having his daughters involved in this project.

At first I thought a reality TV show involving young children would be a bad idea and then it hit me. There are some reality shows that would be perfect. One of our favorites is Supernanny with Jo Frost.

My boys and I love this show because it makes us look good compared to the families that are showcased. For a brief moment each week, we feel a wee bit superior!

I absolutely could see ABC running a celebrity edition! After Nanny Jo works with Denise and Charlie on better shared parenting skills, which could take an entire season, she could move on to other celebs. Britney Spears, Eddie Murphy, Kate Moss, Michael Jackson, Alec Baldwin, ...... the possibilities are endless!

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Saturday / Show Yourself Sunday

Recently when blog-surfing I noticed a few blogs that asked for lurkers to identify themselves. I thought this was a great request. I am a relatively new blogger ( March of '07 ), and am a feedback junkie. I don't have advertisers and need some sort of acknowledgement.

I noticed certain days have themes: Wordless Wednesday, Four for Friday.... and decided to create my own blog day.
Drum Roll.......... Sign-in Saturday!

So, if you happen to be out there lurking, please show yourself! As this is already late afternoon on Saturday, I also propose that Sunday is... Show Yourself Sunday.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Monopoly - Root of all Evil?

I used to think that Dodgeball was the "Root of All Evil". I now would like to add Monopoly to the list. With both games, someone always ends up crying! Ever since we got the new Electronic Banking Edition for Christmas, the boys seem to be playing back to back games on the weekends. This new version of Monopoly is faster to play with larger payouts. Everything is faster... playing, going bankrupt, and even the inevitable fights that breakout. It's like I have my very own set of The Apprentice in my house!

The boys are fascinated with the programmable debit cards. They love to add money to them. My bad little boys tried to add money to their Target gift cards and I tried with my Visa debit card...It doesn't work! Stinking beeping gadget! What good is it other than to annoy me?

The Missing Notebook

Last night my 5th grader was frantically looking for his journal for school. The purple spiral-bound notebook had gone missing a few days earlier and he was one day behind in entry writing for his class.

I helped in the search and found the notebook in my 1st grader's room. Apparently he "borrowed" it to write a new Monopoly rule about being able to collect $2million dollars every time a player passes GO. My 6 year old not only forgot to ask permission from his oldest brother, he also forgot he still had the journal. I wrote a note to the 5th grade teacher to explain.

Flipping Breakfast!
This morning at breakfast as I was glancing over at my 6 year old son, I noticed he was rubbing the side of his nose with his middle finger. As he was slowly stroking this finger on his nose and then tapping his cheek, he seemed to be glancing over at his 9 year old brother across the table to see if he was watching.

Wait a minute! Could this be deliberate? Is he "flipping off" his brother?

As I watched in disbelief, I noticed my baby glance in my direction. I could tell he knew what he was doing.
" Colin!" I called out. " What are you doing with that finger?"

At first he feigned innocence. I wasn't buying it. He asked, " Why? Is that bad? What does it mean?"

I had to leave the room for a moment to gain composure. I wanted to bust out laughing but knew that would not be the proper response.

My husband fielded that one. " It is sign language for a very bad word and it will get you into big trouble if you do it again!"

I re-entered the room and asked where he learned this gesture.

His brothers explained that when playing Monopoly this weekend, Colin kept tapping the board with his middle finger. They told him not to do it, that it was like using a swear-word. I guess he thought he'd test that out at the breakfast table in front of Mom & Dad!

Wait a minute... " Hey! How do you guys know about this?" I inquired of my older two boys.

I guess we need to add Riding the School Bus to "The Evil List"!

Meanest Mom Sells Car

I guess that I'm not the baddest mom on the planet. Maybe it's 'cause my boys aren't old enough to drive.

This is another headline today that made me smile. Apparently a mom in Fort Dodge, Iowa found a bottle of booze under the driver's seat of her teenage son's car. She promptly took out an ad to sell the car.

"OLDS 1999 Intrigue
Totally uncool parents who obviously don't love teenage son, selling his car. Only driven for 3 weeks before snoopy mom who needs to get a life found booze under front seat. $3,700/offer. Call meanest mom on the planet." Meanest Mom Sells Car

I think what she did is awesome!

Check Cashing with Bernie?

This morning a saw a headline from the AP that made me smile and think of the movie, "Weekend at Bernie's". Apparently two men in New York, wheeled a dead man in an office chair to a check-cashing store to cash his social security check. File this under: It seemed like a good idea at the time!" / stupid criminal stories.

" Pair bring corpse to store to cash check "

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Reasons to Have Children - V

Reason # 5 - To Pass on Your DNA

My husband found an old mold of my 12 year old pre-orthodontics teeth. He had my oldest son ( now 11 ) hold them up next to his mouth. Mmmm.. wonder whose teeth he has???

We've already started saving up for braces!