Domestically Dunn

The most important work you and I will ever do will be within the walls of our own homes. -Harold B Lee

No More Food Fights! September 23, 2009

Filed under: Motherhood — domesticallydunn @ 3:24 pm
Tags: , , , ,


One of our biggest struggles with Lovebug as of late has been dinner time.  He has come to a stage where he likes to be in control of everything, and assert his will in direct opposition to ours.  I have no idea where he gets this from (ahem…).


I do not make him special food, but we do give him food we know he likes, and sometimes even asks for, and only in a kid sized portion.  But he will take one or two bites and then sit there and ask to get up.  I have let him up many times due to  “if he is hungry he will eat”, only to have him 5 minutes later ask me for pretzels or some other snack item.  I don’t like wasting food, and I am determined not to give in to his tactics.  🙂


So that has left us with a dilemma… Do we let him sit there until he eats his food?  Do we feed it to him? (Many times he has just needed some direction that way to get the ball rolling and then he has done fine.), or what usually ends up happening- “The Negotiation Process”.


“You need to eat these three bites before you can get up.”  or “After you take one bite of vegetables, then you can have one bite of bread.”


I don’t necessarily think that negotiating with a two year old is a great idea, and I was doing my best to make eating a good and positive experience.  This seemed to make mealtime a negative and dreaded chore for us and him.  Not at all what I want it to be.


I was talking to my friend Holly’s mom about this and she opened up my new mama eyes to a great idea.   She told us to let him eat as much as he wants of what we are eating (providing it is something he likes of course), and let him be finished when he asks.  The kicker… If he doesn’t finish his plate, it goes into the refrigerator for the next time he asks for something to eat. Then if he is truly hungry, he will eat it.


It was a completely obvious and easy solution!  And it has worked wonders.  Now if he doesn’t finish or eat very much, he knows that in order to have anything else, (like dessert!) he has to eat his food.


Voilà!  No more food fights!


What are your tips for getting a toddler to eat and not waste food?


2 Responses to “No More Food Fights!”

  1. Traci Says:

    Try make everything interesting shapes: cookie cutters for bread or cheese slices can make stars, bells, whatever and naming veggies “baby trees” etc for broccoli and talking about where they come from: Rabbit’s garden grew these yummy green beans (Pooh Bear’s Rabbit, you know, you’re all moms too, right?!)

    And let them watch, or if you can stand the mess, even “help” a little bit during the cooking process, seems to make them want to at least try new things.

    Mine are still a work in progress but these all help me so far! I needed this post today, they pretty much picked at my many efforts just last night, so I hope to get some new ideas too!

    • domesticallydunn Says:

      That’s true Traci! When he does help me in the kitchen (especially with the pizzas), he tends to be more interested in eating it. Great reminder! I will also have to try the other tips!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s