Dinner-time Drama

Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner

Dinner in our household is best described as melt-down prone AND the start of the witching hour for us. Most nights you have to be ready to sit next to Cranky and The Boss, or Grumpy and I-will-only-eat-anything-you-haven’t-made, or Whiner and the Crier.

Now Theodore, for some reason, has got in his head that he can only eat his pasta at home. Occasionally, he does eat it at the sitter’s house. But at school, and at the sitter’s, his diet for the day consists of yogurt, bananas, apple juice, Yogurt Melts. So by the time he gets home around 5 p.m. he’s starving mad — literally.

He then eats two servings of Gerber Graduates Pasta ravioli, two YoBaby blueberry yogurt or more, sometimes a banana or sometimes not, apple juice, and a handful of those melts.

Obviously he eats first, and then we get everyone else together. It’s just easier for us to eat that way although I try my best to get everyone at the table at the same time.

Having been preemies it was crazy trying to get everyone to gain weight, so I would often find myself fretting over a meal that wasn’t consumed. I’d push, prod, beg, plead… please eat this meal!

That was then.

Largest Meal is Lunch

ONLY in this past few months has a doctor actually told me not to worry about dinner time. WHAT?! All those nights I lost worrying over an uneaten hot dog?! It was Gretchen’s endocrinologist who we are seeing due to Gretchen’s small size who said:

It’s common for toddlers up to pre-kindergarteners to have their biggest meal at lunch time.

Thank God! Why didn’t someone else tell me this before the kids were 4.5 years old?

Aside from Theo’s food issues, he really hasn’t met a meal he hasn’t liked…as long as it’s his favorites. He’s growing and thriving quite well.

Olena has always been picky. But she eats a lot of cheese and yogurt so I’m not worry about her not having milk in her cereal.

Gretchen would eat anyone under the table, but she HAS to be in the mood.

Lately, neither girl has been in any mood for dinner.

But today we had a breakthrough so to speak. The girls decided they wanted peanut butter and jelly while I was already in the process of making chicken (I always make enough for a few nights. Tonight I made garlic and oregano, and olive oil with Dinosaur BBQ Cajun Foreplay on it — yum!) and Kansas City style baked beans. So then I thought well, sure, if you want PB&J, go for it. The catch — you have to make it.

Too Many Cooks in the Kitchen

The girls pushed the extra seating over to the counter. I got out the necessities: grape jelly, smooth peanut butter, the sandwich bread, and butter knives. I squeezed the jelly on the one piece of bread, and then helped them with the peanut butter. I took their tiny hands in mine, and showed them how to best spread the peanut butter without ripping the pieces apart.

Olena looked so awkward holding the bread. I reassured her to not be afraid, she was doing it fine. Gretchen was holding the knife so hard her knuckles were white. Relax little one…

They managed to spread both, and assemble the sandwich, without getting peanut butter all over the place. And they were so happy that Olena ate the whole thing. Gretchen, however, ate everything but the crust, but then went on to eat Goldfish, and finish it off with orange juice.

Funny how something so simple could bring us all to the dinner table at the same time…and, for tonight at least, make for one happy meal.

Now, I think, we’ll have to work on breakfast. Oh boy…


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