Making your fussy toddler eat

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I generally call my little one a fussy eater. However my definition of fussy eater being him not having the food I serve. I do prepare him food that he likes but over these months I understand there isn’t any food that he really loves eating apart from his yogurt and chocolates. So I kept wondering is there something I need to improvise on. Do I have to cook  food more deliciously or do I have to present it in a more pleasing appetizing manner. Do I attempt to force feed him so he doesn’t stay empty stomach. These are not just ordinary thoughts but very distressing ones that stresses every mom out there. These thoughts are like plague and once we get into this viscous thought cycle we start thinking about all possible ways and tricks to get our little ones have their food.and this also ruins the harmony of the entire house. After all, all that a mom would ask for is to see her kid with a happy belly.

So how could this be tackled. Just like every other mom I went on reading articles, seeking help from mommy communities, watching YouTube vids and testing these approaches on my little one.
There were advises on force feeding, which I tried once and regret till date, when I once saw my son tremble while sleeping trying to close his mouth. That was such a pathetic sight that any mom would like to see. I realised how fragile our little ones are that just a single attempt could create such an impact and thinking about doing it as a practice was horrifying.
And then there was an advise to cut the intake of milk if he refuses to eat but I couldn’t do that as well. That made my little one very weak since he already hasn’t had his food and then to stop milk only made him brittle. That was the only source of energy and I dont want to force anything on him.
So I started preparing different food items to know if there might be something that he would love to eat. All these attempts only made me desperate and I started losing my patience and calm which was the very crux. Not to force anything on him. When nothing seems to work, when books or gurus,videos don’t help you, you get agitated by your own inability which starts to seep into anger towards our little ones.
Now after all these tantrums I realise there is no set path to make your fussy eater eat. There is nothing called a fussy eater. There are only impatient parents. The only key is to observe and allow our little ones to let us know what is the best way to handle them. Each kid is unique and their needs are different. Some kids would take a lot of time first playing with their food getting their hands dirty understanding the texture of the food and then slowly eat, until which we would not wait. We would have already declared he doesn’t like the food and would have gone ahead preparing something else.
There are also kids who would like to do a taste test prior eating a chunk of food and reject the food right away after their taste test, in which case we need to ensure the first bite is something that they would want to taste.
There are the other lot which just evades from food just by the sight of it, where the trick would be the place Finger food at random places of play so that they would eat them or present food in a  more enticing fashion. These are no brainer and everyone of us knew these stuff all along. But the key or the trick of trade as promised is to take the lead of our kids and let them decide how they want to be fed. Making it more nutritious and nourishing within the given limitations is something each mom has to figure out.
What is your take on this. Would love to hear your opinion on it.
Pic courtesy : littlefusspot
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Must haves while flying with toddlers

I now know how tedious it could be flying with toddlers as I just went through it all alone and 9 hours on flight is no joke. Also it’s not just the travel time that you need to be worried about but the whole process from check-in to check out. Luckily I did do a little research prior my travel on how to keep my little now entertained for few hours which is a life saver.

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So here’s my top list of must haves while you travel with your toddler. Any of these items could keep them contained for a max of 15 mins post which you will have to keep alternating with a new one
1. Drawing board:  I found mine at Harrods (in heathrow airport) and it costed me about 10 pounds. It’s worth every penny as the pen is attached to the board and you are saved from the strain of having to pick up the pen every time your kid drops it. And it also comes with a magic eraser that erases with just a swipe and a book attached to it. This kept my son busy for some time. I would definitely recommend it.
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2. Stickers: I dint take with me a sticker book to reduce weight but just took some sticker sheets and my son whiled away time pasting it from one sticker pad to the other.
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3. New Lego toys : buying new toys for the travel was a huge savoir as toddlers with the surprise element keeps them occupied for a while until they explore it and meddle with it till their hearts content.
4. Snacks : this comes handy when they become cranky. I opted for healthy snacks like dried carrots, apples, ellas fruit smoothies, banana rings and some chocolates to bribe him from crying. Avoid yogurt and dairy food as its prohibited to be carried while check-in and also it becomes a lot messier. Finger foods are the best and safe bet. In flight it’s more important to keep them settled and comfortable rather than trying to fill their stomach with their regular food. So less is more.
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5. Co-passenger: striking a friendly conversation with your co passengers could come handy as they might come to your rescue in distracting your toddlers attention in case they whine. In my case my co passenger was very friendly that I was able to leave him with her for me trips to loo or a bottle refill. But thing to be noted is they are strangers and we must be doubly careful before you trust anyone with your kid.
6. Take off and landing: these are the two most stressful times for toddlers and this can be eased by letting them have a bottle of milk as sucking it calms them from the air pressure.  Luckily for me my son feel asleep at both take off and landing.
These are few tips that worked for me, hope it might come handy to you. Please share any other tips that you might know of, that might help in my return trip.

Yummy Green Upma for toddlers

Cooking for a fussy eater is never simple. You got to explore all possibilities to make a fussy toddler eat. Also babies easily get bored of repetition and they don’t want to see the same food again. So I trick my little one by adding a different veggie to the same recipe each time so it becomes a new meal all together.

Also since they are these tiny tots we need to take immense care that we provide them healthy nutritious foods. But to my dismay my little one doesn’t love trying new food/taste rather he wants the food he is comfortable with like rice with yogurt or rice with veggie and lentils else just cereals n selective fruits. Rest is just for him to play with abd get messy. He takes a while to get comfortable with any new food I try be it pasta or roti etc. Since my options are limited I came up with this simple recipe for my son as he loves broccoli and has had semolina/sooji earlier. He loved it so much that he went for another serving.

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This is a guilt free food that anyone could try for their toddlers as its nutritious and also filling. So here goes the recipe

Yummy Green Upma Recipe

Ingredients:

Semolina – 1/2 cup

Spinach, peas and broccoli – a small handful (washed and cut into small pieces)

Clarified butter/ghee – 1 tsp

Cream – 1 tbsp (optional if you want your little one to gain weight)

Garlic – 1 (optional aids digestion)

Method:

  1. Dry roast semolina until it turns golden and keep aside

  2. Add clarified butter to a hot skillet and fry spinach and broccoli along with garlic until the spinach is thawed n wilted and  until broccoli is semi cooked.

  3. Now add water and add peas and allow all the veggies to be thoroughly cooked.

  4. The roasted soonish/semolina could be added to the boiling veggies at this point. Allow sooji to boil until its cooked and all the water us absorbed.

  5. The cooked upma has to be mushy and soft in consistency else add a little more hot water and allow semolina to cook thoroughly.

  6. This step is optional, when upma is almost ready add a dollop of cream which would add flavor and richness

Things I never got to do

Being a mom is a 24/7 role and we hardly get any time to spare for ourselves leave alone thinking for getting pampered. Regardless of whether you are a working mom or a home maker the rules still remains the same. But there are those precious moments everyone gets when your toddler falls asleep. It feels like the almighty had pitied on your sorry state and showered temporary mercy. So this is the time when we should make the best use of. Do all the stuff that we always wanted and longed to do.

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My little one just fell asleep after hours of cajoling. At once my ever active mind starts thinking instantaneously of all tasks that I could accomplish during this precious bail out that I just received ..what shall we do now:

  1. It’s been ages I got some good sleep..Let’s take a quick power nap
  2. now is the time to pamper myself applying a face and hair mask. I’m looking like an aunty already
  3. Why don’t I prepare dinner now so I get more free time later
  4. Better to do the laundry now
  5. Kitchen is a mess.needs cleaning
  6. let me scribble down the grocery list else he would never let me pen it down when he’s awake
  7. Let’s speak to mom. Been a while now
  8. I hardly have any good dress. Every single dress is ruined with baby food. Let’s find something online and order it
  9. I need to create a playlist in my mobile to listen to when I’m stressed
  10. No let me browse some baby food recipes.. He hardly eats anything
  11. Let’s download that fitness app first..first thing first need to get back in shape

My mobile beeps.. Twitter update.. ‘6 things I never do now’ by mommy diaries .. What on earth could that be.. Is she missing that same stuff as I’m.. Let’s read that first..then it’s ‘five must have mommy things’ ..’10 things in my bag vlog’..’my skincare routine vlog’..’15 things you must do before you die’ holy crap.. ‘how to peel an orange’……… N my son wakes up with a loud cry.