getting kids to eat vegetables

There are certain battles which you can guarantee every parent has fought.  The do-your-homework confrontation, or the find-your-shoes struggle.  But the age old fight must be the one we all face in the dinner table trenches – getting kids to eat vegetables.

Now, I will throw my hands up and admit that I know I’m lucky.  I think my kids do quite well when it comes to food.  They eat pretty much everything that Hubs and I would eat, and for the most part do it happily.  And even though vegetables can still get a bad rap in our house, I can get my boys to eat them with most meals.  So I thought I’d share my tips for getting kids to eat vegetables, based on what has helped us.

 

make veggies part of every meal

When dinner time becomes a battlefield it can seem easier to just cut your losses and avoid veg altogether.  But even if you know they wont touch it, I think it’s important to still have vegetables on the plate.  It may seem wasteful, but kids learn through routine and familiarity.  My 15 year old eats more vegetables now he’s older.  I think that only happened because they were available to him.  His natural curiosity grew stronger than his childhood pickiness!

 

find a food they love…

…and then find a way to sneak veggies into it!  Middle son is a soup fiend, and that’s probably the easiest food in the world to cram full of veg.  Blend it smooth and they’ll never know that the tomato soup contains all sorts of other sneaky goodies.  Dishes like bolognaise or chilli are also good to smuggle veggies in to.  You can really finely chop them or even blend them and cook them right down.  It makes me feel a bit smug when I watch my kids wolfing down food containing peppers and mushrooms.  If only they knew!

 

find a vegetable they love…

…and serve it all. the. time.  Maybe love is a strong word, but even the pickiest of eaters will have one or two veggies that they will actually eat.  And most kids will happily eat the same foods over and over again – if you’re on to a winning thing don’t feel like you need to shake it up too much.  I know with my kids that corn on the cob, onions, broccoli and salad all go down well.  Making sure at least one of those is included in every meal is a sure fire way of getting kids to eat vegetables.

 

getting kids to eat vegetables

 

encourage them to try one bite

Sometimes kids just hate a vegetable on sight.  They’ve never even tried it, but they hate it.  In our house, we encourage the kids just to try one bite.  Usually, they still decide they hate it (stubborn boys, never like to be proven wrong).  But I like to cultivate an attitude of trying new tastes.  Every now and then, something is just too yummy for them to resist.

 

make food fun

I try not to labour the point of how healthy and good for you vegetables are.  What kid cares about that?  Kids are about fun, and so tapping in to that with food can be a good way of getting kids to eat vegetables.

My boys love corn on the cob, but I think part of that is the cute little corn-shaped handles we use.  I’ve also managed to get my kids to eat vegetables more easily if they’ve been involved in preparing them – shelling peas, peeling mushrooms, or even learning safe knife skills can all be fun ways to get them excited about food.  And as I learned from our trip the pumpkin patch, a Pick Your Own farm (or even growing your own) can also spark a kid’s curiosity about veggies.

 

chill out

So, your kids wont eat a single vegetable and you’ve tried everything?  Well, good for you for trying.  As a parent, that’s all you can do.  A lot of the time, the best thing for getting kids to eat vegetables is to wait for them to grow out of the picky stage.  Until then, don’t stress it.  Just make sure they take a good multivitamin and keep setting a good example by eating the veggies on your own plate.

 

I hope my tips help ease some of the dinner time stress that can come when it#s kids versus veggies.  If you have a tip, I’d love to read it so drop me a comment below!

 

 
This isn’t a sponsored post, I’m not getting paid for the content, but it does contain affiliate links.  You can read more about my affiliate policy here.

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sleeping like a baby when pregnant

It’s been a bit quiet on the blog this week.  All my energy was focused on dragging my very pregnant butt through the last few days of work.  But after a lovely cake-filled send off I’m ecstatic to report that I’m on maternity leave!!!  Such a great feeling.  No more work for ten whole months, and another milestone crossed off on the journey to meet our new little member of the family.  My homebirth kit was delivered today too…talk about things getting real. With maternity leave comes (hopefully) more time to write in here, at least until the little guy decides to put in an appearance.  So I better grasp the opportunity!

My blog has become something of a confession booth for me. First I was talking openly about my affair at 25 weeks pregnant, and now I’m going to tell you all about the other man in my bed.

Allow me to introduce you to…Pierre, my body pillow.


blissed out woman pictured isn’t me, this is a link to the pillow I bought :: Amazon Associates – not sponsored
Broken sleep is probably right up there with pregnancy woes like heartburn and morning sickness as something most of us find ourselves bitching about.  It’s so frustrating, as sleep is something we need and crave but can sometimes feel impossible to get.  In my previous pregnancies getting comfortable at night was like a military mission.  A slapstick military mission, with pillows wedged under all different parts of my body that needed to be readjusted every time I shifted position.  They were always moving about or falling off the bed and I had a lot of restless nights.

This time though, I think I’ve nailed the whole sleep thing.  It’s made a massive difference to how I’ve felt and how well I’ve kept through the whole pregnancy.  And I thank Pierre for that.

 

Why I bought a pregnancy pillow

Pierre was a bit of an impulse buy, as I was sceptical he’d be any better than my usual cocoon of cushions, especially when I saw the price of a lot of pregnancy and body pillows.  But I searched around and found some cheaper options with good reviews (I’ve linked above to the model I bought), and thought it was worth a punt.  We’d only just got our four year old to sleep through the night, so I thought I deserved at least a few months of proper rest before we started the sleepless nights all over again.

I remember when Pierre arrived, I was shocked at how big he was.  He really is like having another person in bed with us at night, which is why we felt we had to give him a name.  Thankfully, we have a huge bed so Hubs hasn’t been relegated to the spare room, but I think some reviews did mention poor partners being shunted to the sofa to make room!

Honestly though?  If I had to choose between Hubs and Pierre at the moment, Hubs would be on the sofa.  And I’d only feel a smidge of guilt.  Because even now at 37 weeks, the only time I wake during the night is for the obligatory pregnant-lady-bathroom-trip.  Then I slip back into Pierre’s arms (Hubs says it’s Pierre’s legs, but I’m not really down with picturing myself nestled into a gigantic crotch), and I’m straight back to sleep.

 

How I use my pregnancy pillow

I had to do some research, as I wasn’t sure what the best way to sleep was to avoid hurting my back, and I couldn’t quite figure out what to do with my arms!  But if my fling with Pierre has made you think that maybe you could do with a new man in your bed, let me share how I get comfortable.

  • Firstly, I lie on my side.  I know that sounds obvious, as there isn’t really any other way to lie once your bump grows, but lying on your side (specifically your left) is best for the blood flow around your body when you’re pregnant.
  • I rest my head on the curve of the u-shape (or as Hubs like to point out, Pierre’s crotch).  You’re meant to have your shoulder against the pillow and your head on top, like the girl in the picture. But I’ve put a light pillow in the gap to create a slope as I found it a bit too much of a step.
  • I wrap my arms around the arm/leg of the pillow and hug it to my chest.  One over and one under, otherwise it was a bit like that awkward issue when you spoon someone and don’t know what to do with your bottom arm.  Apparently hugging it is good for your upper back too.
  • I keep my legs fairly straight (not at right angles like the woman in the picture), but stick the pillow leg/arm between my knees to ease the pressure.  Another way is to keep my lower leg straight and just have my top leg at an almost right angle resting on the pillow.  I find too much of an angle puts pressure on my lower back.
  • I tuck the other pillow arm/leg snug into my back.  It stops me rolling back and feels so supportive.
  • When it comes to my bump, I actually don’t do anything.  I find all the rest of my positioning takes any pressure off it.  I do read that women wedge some of the pillow under their bump, but maybe my pillow is too firm or large, but it doesn’t fit under my bump.  If I try to wedge it underneath, it forces me on to my back a little and I don’t like it.  But different strokes for different folks…or different lumps for different bumps?!

 

I’m not a big one for gadgets and gimmicks, and so Pierre has been a pleasant surprise.  I would definitely recommend getting a pregnancy pillow if you’re having trouble getting comfortable, as a crappy night’s sleep can make all the other little things seem so much worse.  Plus, there has been a study which implies that if you have too little sleep you can end up with a longer labour and the increased risk of complications or interventions which comes with that.

Which reminds me…naps are like a maternity leave must, right?  I’m going to make sure I treat myself to a few of those!

My Random Musings
My Random Musings
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