Skip to main content

If Your Kids Eat Spinach...

A healthy lifestyle is a noble goal and one that our family has been striving after for years. You're always in process, especially because it seems as though research changes yearly. Is it better to use real butter or "spread?" Can whole grains be "smooth" and still count? What carbs can I eat, exactly?

Our kids are an even bigger challenge. I have never said I didn't like a vegetable... ever! As a matter of fact, my husband has said he has never met anyone who loves veggies as much as I do. I guess that's what happens when you grow up eating home-grown produce. But that's for another story. Yet somehow I have two lovely children who will, on a daily basis, tell me that they do not want to eat their carrots, green beans, red beets, or corn. You name it, they don't want it.

Let's not even get started on the dark, leafy greens that are so wonderfully healthy. They would rather go to bed hungry. So I started dreaming of ways to get them to eat their vegetables, preferably without complaint. Preferably, loving them! So here are just a few tips, from one mom to another. It works for me and I would love to hear what works for you!

My first tactic is to wait until they are REALLY hungry. For my family, this is usually right before dinner. They have been busy playing and begin hovering in the kitchen. That's when I make the offer, "I'd be happy to get you a snack. You can have carrots or sugar snap peas."

We've been at this long enough that they know I won't cave into other requests, so they make their decision. Once they have their healthy snack (any veggie will do), they are sometimes tempted to take one bite and leave it. That is when my second tactic comes into play.

"Taste that again," I tell them."What animal do you think would like to eat that vegetable?" If that question doesn't take, I'll work through several others until they have eaten most of what is in front of them. I ask things like: Does it taste like it came from a warm place or a cold place and why? Do you think a monkey (try avariety of animals here) would eat it? Does it taste like it grows on a tree, on a plant, or in the ground and why? Does it taste like the letter "C" (if eating a Carrot)?

Not only are they eating the nutrient rich vegetables now, but they are also learning about it's spelling, where and how it grows, and what animals might be eating it today too!

This game really does work in our house. Even if they are full at dinner (which they probably won't be) at least I know they've had their veggies. And I can make spinach for dinner. They won't eat it, but I can make it.


Popular posts from this blog

Mom Spot: Progressive Pioneer

Here is another blog I've come across in recent weeks. She has gorgeous pictures and her post yesterday was truly fantastic.

"Maine is pretty rainy in the spring.  And I lived in Oregon for awhile and it defines rainy.  So, a little rain rarely puts me in a gray mood.  In fact, this rainy, rainy spring we've been having here in Utah has actually made me feel quite cheerful!  Each rainy day has felt like something of a celebration."

Click HERE to read the entire post - you have to see the photographs! You'll also find all kinds of topics on sustainable and simple living. Enjoy!

Butterfly Pavilion

Of all the child-focused exhibits I wish I could visit weekly, Butterfly Pavilion is number one. I could spend hours in the rainforest-like room where butterflies dance through the air, lush vegetation sprawls from every corner, and a delightful assortment of other tropical animals make their home. You can meet Rosie, the resident tarantula and stroke a horseshoe crab as a wonderful side-light to your Pavilion trip. (Is there a child's birthday in your future? The Butterfly Pavilion is available for parties!)

The Sunset Stroll, a monthly event, gives you a more exclusive tour where you will see activities not seen during the daylight hours. A reservation is necessary. The Butterfly Pavilion is open seven days a week and summer is a great time to go! Schools are mostly finished with their field trips and you can walk the outdoor nature trail. Everyday, new butterflies are released between 12:30 and 3:30pm, and there are great spots to have lunch, so plan to make a day of it!

Fun Fa…

Make a Difference: Black Stallion Literacy Program

Although it's hard to pin down our very favorite summer activity, one would have to be our afternoon with the Black Stallion Literacy Project. I was unfamiliar with the program until it was brought to the HoneyBear Tree Preschool at our church and my children attended with other children from the community. The Black Stallion Literacy Project (BSLP) is a program that is well represented around the front range in Colorado, but extends across the country from it's roots in Florida.

Born of a family heritage in 1999, BSLP has grown to serve hundreds of thousands of children across the nation. The purpose and goal of the organization is clear on their website:

"The Black Stallion Literacy Foundation is an innovative partnership of educators, businesses, volunteers, education foundations, and staff members focused on promoting literacy through the winning combination of live horses and books by Walter Farley. The program is based on the classic books of Walter Farley an…