My 18-month-old son just ate a Girl Scout S’mores cookie. Ok, maybe 4. For breakfast. I know it’s not-so-healthy-but-oh-it’s-so-delish. Plus, we had lots of leftover boxes from my daughter’s troop. Those Thin Mints literally pushed the quinoa oatmeal aside in the pantry.
To be fair, Jack is my third child. (I would like to think if he was my first child I would keep an avocado in my diaper bag). And while I would love to be cutting up some organic grapes in halfsies before heading to the park, we are often tossing back a sippy cup of milk while munching on a cereal bar in the car. (Sidenote: Don’t get me started on how he crushes a cereal bar and his sticky little fingers)…
It’s a conundrum: Balancing healthy food and the realities of ALWAYS being on the go. What’s a mom to do?
- The night before: Lunches should be made the night before- not during the morning while we are simultaneously trying to brush our own teeth and our children’s. It takes them four hours to put on their shoes so you can’t make lunch at the same time. Unless you like to yell.
- Restaurant inspiration: My picky-eater daughter decided she likes granola, yogurt, grapes, and honey when we ordered a “dessert” bowl at a restaurant. Look at menus for ideas if you are in a food rut.
- Together Time– We will often make pizza with store-bought premade dough, premade sauce, and mozzarella cheese. My kids will (usually) eat food they make and it fills the time between after school and dinner time without the Ipad.
- Precut & frozen– I know precut catenlope costs more than the giant melon, but sometimes, it’s easier to throw those cubes on their plates. And did ya know that frozen veggies can be more nutritious than veggies that have been shopped long distances? Yup, so microwave that frozen broccoli, throw some olive oil and salt on it, and shove in the oven.
- Fast and healthy: You can get eggs at most fast food places. It will make you feel good about that fast food drive through and you can get another cup of coffee.
- Dips and smoothies– Some kids will eat carrots if you dip in ranch or eat fruit when you whip up a smoothie. Even my baby likes to press the smoothie button, and it’s an easy way to sneak in some healthy stuff.
I suppose it’s all about balance. Some days we eat cookies. Some days we eat organic turkey bacon with no nitrates. We are doing our best, and that’s okay. Some days you’ll eat a “bar in the car” and some days you’ll make a 4-course meal. And some days you’ll find a smooshed avocado in your purse from your first kid…
Mom of Three