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How do you feed your kids?

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#1 Guest_- Poppy -_*

Posted 01 December 2012 - 08:54 PM

Do you let your kids pick what they want to eat and give it to them?

Or do you pick out what they are going to eat and they either eat that or go hungry?

Do you feed your kids on a schedule or do you wait until they tell you that they are hungry?

If they dont eat their dinner do you offer them something else or is it is eat your dinner and go hungry?

Just having problems with DS, picking out the food he wants to eat and then not eating it! Not eating his dinner and demanding icy poles and having epic meltdowns when I say no.

First time parent so im just wondering how other people do it.

#2 ~~HappyMummy~~

Posted 01 December 2012 - 09:06 PM

I pick for them - breakfast, lunch and dinner.  I also pack snacks for when out.  She can choose snacks when we're at home.

I only have issues with dinner sometimes.  If she tries it and really doesn't like it, I'll offer something else easy like spaghetti or toast.  I don't like the idea of sending her to bed without dinner.

I feed them on a loose schedule - cereal for breakfast around 7.15, sandwich & fruit for lunch at 12.30 and dinner at 5.00pm.

(I have two kids - dd is 2.5 years and DS 15 months.  They eat together always)

#3 eboyd

Posted 01 December 2012 - 09:07 PM

Honestly, it depends on the day. Also I am way less strict with DS2 than I ever was with DS1. However if they don't eat their dinner I am happy for them to have something else but it has to be healthy like a banana or weetbix sometimes I might make a banana smoothie (just milk and a banana). I am not for the eat this or go hungry as that means I don't get any sleep . . . and sleep is very important to me lol.

My kids for the most part eat quite well. DS1 eats most things but he does have his list of foods he just plain doesn't like. Fair enough so do I. DS2 is a little pickier at the moment but unless he's really tired he eats quite well too and he's only 18 months old so still learning.

Also once a fortnight DS1 gets to chose what we are having for dinner, that way he feels like he has some control over what he is eating, and he gets to decide what he eats for breakfast and lunch also (within reason).

Hope this helps

#4 Ice Queen

Posted 01 December 2012 - 09:09 PM

I am the boss of food!  That is how I look at it.

But having said that I do think I am a nice boss and dont make unreasonable demands.  My kids are 12mo and 3.5.  We eat at (approx) 7.30am breaky, 10am morning tea, 12 lunch, 330 afternoon tea, 530/6 dinner.  I no longer do random snacking, it was doing my head in.  With the baby this is harder and I do often feed him a small meal at 5pm as I just cant cope with the whinging.

I will ask DD what she wants for her morning/afternoon tea but I word it like "what fruit do you want" rather than "what do you want" because obviously she is 3 and will say 'a lollipop please"!  For dinner if I am just cooking for the kids I say "do you want pasta or sausages?" not "what do you want".  I never use an open ended question.

Most meals are eaten at the table, together.  As much as is practical.  Dinner is very much my decsion but as I said I dont cook things I know they wont eat.  If the meal is something 'new' then I make sure the veges are something familiar and liked.  DD just has to try the new thing but she can fill up on the rest of the meal.  I never ever offer a substitute.

I have no issue with sending a toddler to bed hungry.  It rarely happens in our house and they figure it out pretty quickly.  But I get that some kids seem to survive on nothing so that must be stressful.

Hope that helps.   biggrin.gif

#5 katrina24

Posted 01 December 2012 - 09:17 PM

Hi, I do it differently depending on the meal.

Breakfast - they get a choice from a limited range of options.

Lunch - depends on the day. Usually I just make whatever and serve it up.  If we are out they get choice from a limited range. Sometimes at home they get choice e.g., do they want salad on a plate or in a wrap.

Dinner - rarely get a choice.

Snacks - I give them choices from a set of healthy options. They are not allowed to get food without asking.

They have breakfast and dinner at pretty consistent times. Lunch varies a bit but if they say they are hungry and it's coming into the lunch 'hours' I will make them lunch.

I generally follow the rule 'I decide what to offer them and they decide how much to eat'. As a general rule if they don't want to eat their dinne then there is nothing else.  But, I don't make them eat things they really don't like.  If it's just a case of 'I'd prefer not to eat this becaUse I can have toast instead' then that's too bad.

I encourage them to try new foods but if they try something and ally don't like it I will give them an alternative that is similar.

#6 noonehere

Posted 01 December 2012 - 09:18 PM

I pick all the meals unless she asks for fruit or cheese.

When serving i make sure there is always one food she will eat. Its eat a decent amount (with in reason of course) or nothing else. She does not have to finish her plate.

#7 a letter to Elise.

Posted 02 December 2012 - 03:14 AM

DS eats to a loose schedule - breakfast at 8, morning tea at 10, lunch at 12, afternoon tea at 3, dinner at about 6. If he asks for food outside of those times, I only give him something extra if he finished the last meal, otherwise I give him the same thing back again. If I am not strict about this, he wastes food by taking a bite out of things, and then asking for something else 10 minutes later.

We always sit down properly to eat, so that he doesn't wander off, and finishes his food. He can have non messy snacks sitting on a stool at the coffee table, all other meals are at the kitchen table. He is never allowed to walk around with a biscuit or anything like that.

He can choose between limited options for breakfast, lunch and snacks. Dinner is whatever I make. He has to eat what I make, I don't offer alternatives. If it is something new, or something I know he might not be keen on, I always make sure there is some kind of vegetable that he likes, so at least he will eat that. No dessert unless he eats most of his dinner, and tries a bit of everything. Dessert is usually some fruit, or sometimes icecream.

If he won't eat his dinner, I put it away while he has his bath, and if he complains of being hungry before bed, I give it back. Sometimes he eats it, sometimes he chooses to go without. If I offered an alternative like a banana or toast, he would never eat his dinner and just hold out for the toast.

#8 BRB

Posted 02 December 2012 - 12:22 PM

Ive pretty relaxed when it comes to food. I don't want to start food battles with DS so if he doesn't eat what is served then I try again in 30 min. If he still doesnt eat it then I put it away and thats it. I dont make a big deal out of it because I just don't want to go down that road with him of fighting for him to eat and turing it all into a game for him.
Breakfast he gets a choice. Lunch I usually just decide and dinner he eats what we eat (he is 2yrs old). Snacks are usually fruit and only a morning snack. If he has an afternoon snack I find he won't eat dinner.
Some days he is a great eater and others Im lucky to get him to eat half a slice of bread. I just go with it and Im sure he eats when he is hungry.

#9 Propaganda

Posted 02 December 2012 - 12:56 PM

At that age, she would somewhat dictate her own meal times, but I mostly would tell her when she could eat. Breakfast, morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner. I would offer her a choice, but it wouldn't be a chance to choose from anything, I would offer two or three things and let her choose from those. Dinner wasn't something she had a choice in though. It was eat it, or go without.

#10 katniss

Posted 02 December 2012 - 01:04 PM

We don't set particular times for meals but it's usually around the same time most days. I'm the one who cooks so I choose what we eat but I make things I know they like. If I try something new it would be in conjunction with something else I know they like.

#11 janie1105

Posted 02 December 2012 - 01:17 PM

Ha, I'm way more relaxed original.gif

Meals are around the same time because that's when everyone is hungry.  So 7am, 12 noon & 5.30pm.

Otherwise, they tell me when they are hungry and I'll let them know what's available.

When a meal time arrives, I just tell the kids (7, 5 & 2) what's available and they pick.  

I tend to let them choose their snack time.  If they're not hungry I don't offer.  If they are, they'll tell me.

Dinner is whatever the family is eating.  Though the 2 year old only eats weetbix, honey sandwiches, yogurt and fruit (for the last 6 months straight).  I'm ok with that, it's enough food and he'll grow out of it.  They all do.

I definitely advocate for taking it easy.  Most kids become good eaters in good time.

#12 NinjaMum

Posted 02 December 2012 - 01:23 PM

Similar to PPs, we have a loose schedule around meal times. 6am brekkie, 9-10 snack, 12 lunch, 3-4 snack, 5:30 dinner.

Sometimes I will allow DS to state what he wants (within reason, eg. rice crackers or fruit), but most of the time I give him a choice of 2 or 3 items. "Do you want a pear or a nectarine?" if the answer is "a bikkie" then I will gently say no and restate the question. If he doesn't want either of the options, then he will usually wander off and not have something to eat until he comes back and asks for one of the things I've offered.

For main meals (particularly dinner), my requirement is that he at least tries the meal. Very rarely will I let him dictate what we eat for dinner. Most cases he will eat it, sometimes he'll take a mouthful and decide he doesn't want it. On those nights, his option is toast/sandwich or bed. He usually picks peanut butter toast.

#13 lozoodle

Posted 03 December 2012 - 11:28 AM

Dinner is what we are all having. Though I make sure I incorporate at least one thing they like on the plate, and a piece of fruit after. They get what they get, if they don't want it, then they go hungry.

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