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January 29, 2011

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What’s On Your Plate?

Another one of our New Year’s Resolutions was to be better organized with food. Both for ourselves and the babies. When we were pureeing everything, I could just pull out a jar from the freezer stash or mash up some fresh fruit. Well, those days are over!

Now, in order to make sure the boys are getting what they need in the amounts they need, it’s taking more work. In some ways it’s LESS work, because we can feed them most of the stuff we eat. But now that I’m responsible for their lives, their palates and their nutrition, I felt like I needed to be more organized with what they are eating rather than just pulling stuff out of the fridge all the time and hoping for the best.

To be honest, this ‘stage’ came up fast and without warning. While Grunter was happy with some finger foods for some of October and all of November/December, Whoop Whoop absolutely, positively would.not.feed. himself. Uh, he’s my super stubborn one, remember the standing up in the crib episode??
Then, suddenly December 13th, 2010, he decided that he would feed himself one day and that was it! After that, he wouldn’t let us feed him anymore and we were scrambling around for more finger foods.

Here Whoop Whoop is, feeding himself for the first time! It cracks me up the amount of concentration it takes to get those pieces of food in the mouth. He really takes his time to get the pincher grasp just right where Grunter is a grab it and palm it in!


Since that time, we’ve done a ton of research (imagine that, a bit OCD we are) on health, nutrition and meal planning. After a couple of trial weeks, we made three weekly menus–breakfast, snack, lunch, snack and dinner.
It’s working out really well and is so much easier to shop and cook now.

The other resolution I made was to use my slow cooker again. I bought it years ago and have not made use of it whatsoever. Since the beginning of the year, I’ve made a meal in it every week and it’s great! I am really loving it. So far I’ve made a chicken and sweet potatoes dish, BBQ beef brisket and black bean chili. The boys have been able to eat everything and I freeze half of it for quick meals. Any recipes for a slow cooker you want to pass on?

The other thing I’m really strict about is having ALL meals, including snacks, in the high chair. I want them to be good eaters and have good table manners so I think letting them know early on that meals are at the “table” is the best way to start. Of course, there are going to be times we are out and about that they will eat on the run or in their stroller, but for the most part–we only eat in the high chair. No food in the living area or play area and we do not bring toys to the high chair. Anyone else this strict??

Curious–do any of you have meal/menu planners? Care to share? I would love to post mine, but it’s in a PP and I can’t figure out how to do that. If anyone wants it, email me.