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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm not happy about the snacks my church serves in the nursery, so I sent this e-mail to the children's director:<br><br>
This is just my opinion, and I felt I needed to share even though probably no one will agree with me. It's regarding the snacks in the nursery.<br><br>
First of all, I applaud the fact that sugar drinks are no longer served like they were at the old building. Water works just fine. (Of course, I think that decision was primarily made based on the new carpets, not nutrition).<br><br>
I don't think the childrens' nutrition is being considered when we serve snacks. I assume that the church buys the cheapest food possible, which unfortunately also means cheapest quality. The goldfish and animal crackers aren't that bad, but the cheeseballs are full of artificial colors and monosodium glutamate. The colors stain hands and clothes. I completely undertand that it would not be possible or affordable to serve something like fresh fruit, but perhaps other options could be explored, like whole grain crackers?<br><br>
Of course, I can only voice my opinions, and if I can't implement a change, then I will provide a snack from home for my child, which I often do anyway. I just thought about it because Silas will soon be in the 2 year old room, and I don't want him eating the cheeseballs. We will provide fruit or homemade bread for him.<br><br>
Thank you for listening,<br>
Brittany<br><br><br>
Okay, what has completely pissed me off is that she didn't even respond. She must have received the e-mail because I did not get a mailer demon notice. I knew she wouldn't care (I've seen how her family eats), but she should have responded, even if to say that she disagrees. I'm not sure where to go from here. Should I send her another e-mail, go over her head, or what?
 

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It is too bad that she didn't reply. I would just continue to supply your own snacks for your child, at least for now. Food can be such a political and touchy issue for families these days, and I've noticed it's hard to have an open discussion about it without feeling like you're judging or being judged. Perhaps there's a creative way to encourage more nutritious snacks-- like having a fundraiser and using the money to buy higher quality foods, or maybe you could even host a simple class about nutrition, or have a speaker. Good luck!
 

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Since you just sent it on Monday (I am thinking this because you might have gone to the nursery on Sunday...) she might not have read it yet. Most Church employees are off on Mondays or a skeleton crew is in place.<br><br>
But as someone on the other side of running things, I would hope you would talk to her face to face or call her and leave her a message to call you this week because you have a concern. Just like online forums, emails do not have facial expressions, tone of voice or implying rudely or friendly kwim?<br><br>
I would leave her a message saying you dropped her a line on email but wanted to touch base with her. Then when you have her on the phone or at church, ask about other options for serving snacks. As much as I 150% agree, I dont want my kids eating cheetos on Sunday morning, it may have been donated or left over from something else. Who knows. Instead of just expecting, offer solutions that you can help with. Most church people are open to others helping out, but if not and she tells you to go fly a kite, well then bring your own snack for your child.
 

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How do the other families feel about the snacks that are served? If you have some support, it will be easier to make some changes.<br><br>
If it's an issue of funding, but everyone agrees that the snacks are not appropriate, can the burden be shared? There's probably a weekly budget for snacks for the nursery. Why not ask each family who uses the nursery to take a turn supplying snacks for everyone? They can start with the funds that are budgeted, and then contribute any shortfall when they shop for fresh fruit or yogurt or whatever else is on an agreed-upon list of nutritional snacks. This takes away the onus from one person to do all the planning and shopping, and shares the work and the expense.<br><br>
That's the way it works on the sports teams that my kids have played on. Each week, a different family brings end-of-game snacks for all the players. We agree that it should be something nutritious. And there's no budget at all to help out, yet everyone participates.
 

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I am often really bad about answering emails right way. If they are not labelled "urgent" I often take awhile to answer or forget! I'd give her sometime and if she does not answer soon send her an email again.<br>
I think you did not suggest any thing unreasonable.
 

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Maybe she's just processing it. I know sometimes it takes me a while to digest something and figure out what to do. I think it's a good sign she didn't reject it right away and/or get defensive.<br><br>
If she doesn't respond in a week or so I'd follow up with an email suggesting that you would like to bring snacks for your child's room the following week or something like that, if that's affordable for you. It may help build some goodwill and maybe the other parents will notice and get on board, you never know.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>motheringforme</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15392839"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
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This is just my opinion, <span style="text-decoration:underline;">a<i>nd I felt I needed to share even though probably no one will agree with me</i></span>. It's regarding the snacks in the nursery.<br><span style="color:#0000FF;">(there is no reason to assume no one will agree with you, it makes you sound a ittle defensive, and even if you know it to be true...why give them excuses?)</span><br><br>
First of all, I applaud the fact that sugar drinks are no longer served like they were at the old building. Water works just fine. <span style="text-decoration:underline;"><i>(Of course, I think that decision was primarily made based on the new carpets, not nutrition)</i></span>. <span style="color:#0000FF;">There is no need for the underlined part. It negates the positive thing you are trying to say. I think the rest of the paragraph is great. People always like positive acknowledgement!</span><br><br>
I don't think the childrens' nutrition is being considered when we serve snacks. <i><span style="text-decoration:underline;">I assume that the church buys the cheapest food possible</span></i>, which unfortunately also means cheapest quality. The goldfish and animal crackers aren't that bad, but the cheeseballs are full of artificial colors and monosodium glutamate. The colors stain hands and clothes. I completely undertand that it would not be possible or affordable to serve something like fresh fruit, but perhaps other options could be explored, like whole grain crackers? <span style="color:#0000FF;">I would simply remove the iunderlined. It sounds a bit defensive and assuming .</span><br><br>
Of course, I can only voice my opinions, and if I can't implement a change, then I will provide a snack from home for my child, which I often do anyway. I just thought about it because Silas will soon be in the 2 year old room, and I don't want him eating the cheeseballs. We will provide fruit or homemade bread for him.<br><br>
Thank you for listening,<br>
Brittany<br></div>
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I have gently critiqued your letter. I do realise it has already been sent, but perhaps it will be food for thought for the next time you send a letter (and there will be a next time -parents are always advocating <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink">).<br><br>
I think it is possible she found the tone slightly off-putting and is using your tone as an excuse not to reply (which I think is unacceptable - but I do know some people ignore letters if they find them rudish). You get more flies with honey than vinegar and all that.<br><br>
I often have other people read letters before I send them if they are important letters. A variety of opinions of how they come off is always a good idea.<br><br>
In any event, I would call her on Thursday or so if she has not gotten back to you and explain you concerns in a friendly way. Offer to problem solve with her.<br><br>
Good luck!
 

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If I had received that, it would probably take me a few days to respond. Your tone's pretty condescending.<br><br>
Call her or talk to her personally. She may well be defensive though now and not as open to making changes.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Alyantavid</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15394472"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">If I had received that, it would probably take me a few days to respond. Your tone's pretty condescending.<br><br>
Call her or talk to her personally. She may well be defensive though now and not as open to making changes.</div>
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As someone formerly responsible for purchasing nursery snacks for a larger congregation, if I had received your e-mail, I would have broken down crying at your tone. It would surely take me a few days to recover enough to respond to you.<br><br>
eta: I also would not buy cheese balls for a nursery, they're messy and I understand that babies dress up for church.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Alyantavid</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15394472"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">If I had received that, it would probably take me a few days to respond. Your tone's pretty condescending.<br><br>
Call her or talk to her personally. She may well be defensive though now and not as open to making changes.</div>
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Agreed. I would be very defensive I received this.
 

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With our church, we have to take into consideration one child's severe allergies. BUT your tone would have ticked me off. No offense.<br><br>
Honestly if I felt as strongly as you do, I would not have sent the letter, I would have sent a totally different letter, saying that I wanted to prepare all the snacks for all the kids.<br><br>
If I wasn't prepared to do that, I would just worry about my child's snacks.
 

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I have to agree with the above. If I received an email like that it would make me feel very angry and defensive, even if I did agree with it.
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Alyantavid</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15394472"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">If I had received that, it would probably take me a few days to respond. Your tone's pretty condescending.<br><br>
Call her or talk to her personally. She may well be defensive though now and not as open to making changes.</div>
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I agree with this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Okay, now I sent this e-mail:<br><br>
You did not respond to my e-mail about the snacks, so I'm sending another. First, I want to apologize for my tone. I did not mean to sound condescending, although after multiple reads I realize it sounded that way. I just meant to sound concerned. You have a lot to manage with the church and your own family, and I know most people would not want to shoulder the responsibility. I was wondering if the church had a specific budget for snacks that you have to work with. If so, could we consider having a fundraiser or donation for the nursery snacks? If it is not important to you, let me know.<br><br>
end e-mail<br><br>
Another problem exists though, and that is that the workers don't seem to take me seriously. Last time he was in the nursery, I specifically said that he was only to have the banana that I provided. When I went to pick him up, he was eating animal crackers. I don't want to lie and say he has an allergy.
 

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<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>motheringforme</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/15395464"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Okay, now I sent this e-mail:<br><br>
You did not respond to my e-mail about the snacks, so I'm sending another. First, I want to apologize for my tone. I did not mean to sound condescending, although after multiple reads I realize it sounded that way. I just meant to sound concerned. You have a lot to manage with the church and your own family, and I know most people would not want to shoulder the responsibility. I was wondering if the church had a specific budget for snacks that you have to work with. If so, could we consider having a fundraiser or donation for the nursery snacks? If it is not important to you, let me know.<br><br>
end e-mail<br><br>
Another problem exists though, and that is that the workers don't seem to take me seriously. Last time he was in the nursery, I specifically said that he was only to have the banana that I provided. When I went to pick him up, he was eating animal crackers. I don't want to lie and say he has an allergy.</div>
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I have a small church and I try to do my part with everyone. BUT we have very few women to help out with all the kids, there is NO way I could guarentee a parent that there kid was just going to eat a banana. I would say if its not working out, just don't use the service. I see a lot of babies at the service for parents that do not want to use the quiet room/day care/bible studies...<br><br>
Just saying.
 

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Maybe when you talk about the problem you should bring up a solution at that time as well to help all of the kids? I like how you talked about about a money raising type thing to help with snacks.<br>
How can you solve this issue so you child doesn't have to see the others eating puffs while they snack on fruit? It is too bad they gave him their nursery snacks even though you asked that not happen. I bet you aren't the only mom concerned about their LO's diet. Talking in person might help more, I would follow up face to face if at all possible.
 

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I like your second email better. I hope you get a response and people are open minded!<br><br>
I want to adress the animal cracker issue as I think it is <i>very</i> common.<br><br>
I see both sides of the issue.<br><br>
I volunteer in as a Spark Leader (youngest of the Girl Guides, age 5 and 6). We do not regualrly serve food at meeting but when we do (often around celebration - Christmas, Easter, etc) we do serve junk food.<br><br>
I have had very little crying in the 3 years I have volunteered - but 2 occasions <i>I do</i> remember crying both centerred around food. In both cases the mothers had told me their child is not to have sugary food - and I have been put in the lovely postion of ten 6 year olds eating cookies while one sobs because she is not allowed cookies. Fun times. We have one "no junk food" child this year and I tell her mom in advance if we are serving junk. I serve it at the end of the meeting so her mom can pick her up early if need be. Sadly, her mom has not choosen to pick her up early - but she has relented (slightly) and often says "XYZ can have a small piece of cake".<br><br>
While your 2 year old may be too young to feel excluded over not eating animal crackers I can assure the day is coming when he will.<br><br>
The animal crackers are another issue. If you see foods as on a spectrum, the healthy food and extremely unhealthy foods are easy to spot (fruit=healthy, coca-cola=unhealthy) but the stuff in between is trickier to evaluate, and open to interpretation. Examples: white buns, animal crackers, cheese. Some people are going to think these are unhealthy and some people are going to think they are OK in moderation.<br><br>
Lastly, because the church nursery is only open once a week it is very possible they less of a responsibility to serve healthy food. They do not have your child all week, and it is the day to day nutrition that counts - not the snack on Sunday...<br><br>
Here are your options as I see them:<br><br>
1. keep child out of nursery.<br>
2. Tell teachers not to feed anything but what you send in - but be firm and clear about it. A note may help (and people are more likely to follow written instructions). "Johnny is on a special diet, and may only eat foods I provide for him. If this is an issue, please come see me and we will discuss it". (you are not lying - he is on a special diet - a mommy approved one!)<br>
3. offer to be resposnsible for supplying food for the class<br>
4. Ask if there is any interest in forming a committee to discuss nutrition in the Nursery/Sunday School. What constitutes junk food? Is it ever allowed? Can we have a list of safe foods? that sort of thing. I also think the option of "parents to provide snacks for their own child" and going snack free are fine. TBH I find the need to have snacks availible at all meeting a little annoying. Why can't we as a society go out for an hour meeting these days without expecing to be fed? I get lots of people disagree with me on the last point, however<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><br><br>
Good luck! I do not think you are wrong in wanting good nutrition for your son. Focus on getting good nutrition for all the kids sake and offer to step up in organising it. You might get far in your endeavors
 

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Some churches have guidelines they must follow according to the health department/insurance etc... on the food that is served. Packaged food tends to have much simpler guidelines/rules than fresh food. They may be limited to the type of food they can serve based on not only funds but also staffing and facilities/equipment. These guidelines may also prohibit homemade food from coming in, just as some schools cannot allow homemade birthday treats.<br><br>
I am surprised they do cheese puffs with that age, especially because of the mess factor. Around here it is usually some type of cracker - maybe not nutritionally ideal, but it is just once a week.
 
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