It’s dinner time. Your littles are STARRRRRVING (or so they’re squealing). You set down your carefully prepared wholesome, yummy meal – with everything cut into the perfect bite-size pieces – perfectly arranged on their cute little partitioned plates… and what do they do next…
Eat it all! Happily! “Mommy, you’re the best! Thank you for preparing such a great dinner for me!”
They TOSS THE PLATE. You know what I’m talking about. They toss the plate. They flip the dang thing up into the air like its some kind of Olympic sport. If you’re me – one of them starts this (we won’t name names CAROLINE) and the other(s) erupt into laughter and follow suit. Luckily Brady’s grown out of this, but Tyler thinks its awesome and hysterical.
This sends my blood pressure through the roof. Namely because a) food costs money and now its all over my maybe-clean-floor, b) because I just took the time to cook all of it and c) I actually need you to eat food to stay healthy.
For a while I continued the fight. I even bought these super expensive placemat/plate things for them to use. (They work great on our slick kitchen counters, but not on our wooden kitchen table).
Finally, I gave up. I decided that this is a stage we’re just going to have to work through. Now, when I can tell the plate-flipping mood is in the air, I move dinner to the kitchen rug.
You got it… the kitchen rug. See, we have a large kitchen rug in our kitchen, just behind the sink. When I can tell dinnertime isn’t going to go well, the twins and I sit on the rug and they eat dinner (when this happens, I just wait until they go to bed to actually eat my dinner – often with Bryan and Brady). We say the blessing, then I hold one plate full of food, with their little fork, and they sit in front of me like little birds. I feed them one bite at a time. Here’s the thing. I always dreamed of dinners around my kitchen table with all five of us happily discussing our day and enjoying our meals. But this isn’t the season for that. It will be one day (and somedays I get something similar to this to happen). But for right now, my main goal is to make sure they actually eat food (healthy food, even!). For whatever reason, sitting on the rug works. And they kind of think it’s fun! Brady even joins in on the fun with his own plate sometimes.
Grace, not perfection. I gave up the perfect (dinnertime at the table with two toddlers) for the good (dinnertime on a rug where everyone actually goes to bed with full tummies). Carry on, mamas.