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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i don't know if i should have posted this in the nutrition thread.<br>
anyway, my 4yo son is pretty much on a hunger strike. well, he does eat, but it's a big, big issue. and he doesn't eat much, and he doesn't eat much of anything.<br>
he used to have the *best* diet! he used to eat mesclun salad with feta cheese and olives and balsamic vinaigrette as his favorite food! i mean he used to *ask* for it, nearly every day. he used to eat nearly anything i made. he used to come to the table when i told him it was mealtime, with no hassle. {note, i'm a single mama of just him}.<br><br>
nearly all the trouble started when we moved in with roommates...he copies the 5yo's nearly every behavior. she doesn't eat much veggies or fruits, she eats what she wants when she wants, they don't have "mealtimes", she eats in the playroom in front of the video. she causes big tantrums when she doesn't get her way. (sometimes she gets it as a result, and sometimes not).<br>
{moving out is not an option right now; too expensive, and we have 8 months to go}.<br><br>
now it's gone beyond that. it's not even about the roommate's kid anymore. they weren't even home for the last month; they were gone before we woke up and home after we went to bed.<br><br>
now he's just refusing to eat, saying he doesn't like anything (unless it's candy or popsicles or "bad food" {his words}).<br><br>
he used to be way into anatomy and had his own anatomy book. he could name every body part and tell what its function was. now he's decided he's repulsed by anatomy and if you even say the word "butt" (like get both your butt cheeks on the chair) he says "DON'T SAY body parts!!" and won't eat, because you made him think about body parts. if you say the word "insides" he thinks of body insides and "can't eat".<br><br>
i would take this as valid-- well, 4yo valid-- if he was not able to eat anything. but he has no problem with candy or sweets or boxed mac and cheese. not that i have sweets around much anymore. i didn't have them around anyway, really, but now and then i'd get him a little bit.<br><br>
before the roommates, he never even had mainstream candy or sweets or juice boxes or anything that wasn't from the healthfood store or that i made. i got a little slack because they were bringing all sorts of stuff home, and have free access, and what could i do except become Big Bad Mama, so i let a lot go, because i decided that our relationship was more important, but this is getting out of hand.<br><br>
today, we were supposed to go to Health Adventure (a kind of children's hands-on museum). he LOVES it there. but i told him that we weren't going until we ate lunch. we stopped at a really nice spot to have a picnic lunch that i made, and he refused to eat. it was a sandwich that he ate with little (well, less) problems yesterday, and today he "hates it". i packed one lousy apple slice with it, and 3 baby carrots, and he kept spitting it out, and crying, and whining, and saying "yuck". it was this big major deal to where i said "we are not going after all, you've caused too much fuss". it was like an hour of fuss!<br><br>
one problem is, he has behavior issues related to low blood sugar. his hyperness gets way out of hand, and his impulse control, which is very low to begin with, goes out the window. he gets whacked.<br>
another thing is, he's lost a couple pounds. i didn't notice it physically, but he got on the scale and used to weigh 39. now he weighs around 37ish.<br><br>
is this normal? do other people go through this? should i just let it go? what in the world should i do? i've told him that he could end up in the hospital with tubes, force fed, but even that doesn't sway him.<br><br>
help!!!!<br>
it's been like 2 weeks now, this acute problem. today i'm nearly in tears. i SO don't want to create a monster out of food, and here it's become that very thing.<br>
what would y'all do? any personal experiences? any hope?<br><br><br>
thanks so much,<br>
pamela
 

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I'll start right off by telling you that I'm probably not going to be much help. My 5 year old is a VERY picky eater as well and will eat one thing one day and the next she "hates that".<br><br>
..but I'll try just cos I feel your pain <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"><br><br>
Have you tried letting him help make his own food? Like making that boxed mac and cheese he likes but letting him drop in pieces of veggies to make it more "colorful". Or baking muffins and letting him stick raisins into each one or let him make his own cheese sandwich (or whatever) and then let him cut it with cookie cutters...anything where he can help out and make it "his"<br><br>
Sorry, but that's about all I have for you other than to say perhaps going out and getting a "kid cookbook" they have some great ideas in those and my 5 year old really likes acting like a grown up and using one to pick out and to <i>mostly</i> do her own snacks and such.<br><br>
Hope that helps at least a little
 

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oh...and as a last resort...or intermediate till you can get him back to eating again. Maybe you could go out and get one of those kid shaky drinks. I don't know any name brands, but I've seen the adds. They're like milky looking drinks for kids that have vitamins and minerals??<br><br>
Maybe make him a milkshake substituting that for the milk part or just freeze it and let him eat it telling him it's a vanilla slushy (or whatever flavor they come in)<br><br>
?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
*sigh*....he doesn't like raisins, or applesauce, won't eat veggies in his mac-n-cheese...and he loves to make stuff, but the fun is in the making and he won't eat the results (usually). i'll try the cookie cutter idea. he doesn't, as a rule, like sandwiches at all.<br><br>
what is this shaky drink thingy? we don't use cow's milk; is it something that i can make myself using soy? hmm, now my wheels are turning...if it has chocolate syrup in it, he just might go for it. but probably only for a day *sigh*<br><br>
he does like this one kind of cereal and soy milk and he will eat frozen blueberries. i can't believe my once-veggie-loving child will not touch a veggie with a ten-foot pole. guess that's what i get for being so smug back when he ate salad every day :-(<br><br>
any more ideas, PLEASE keep 'em coming!<br><br>
thanks,<br>
pamela
 

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If he likes frozen blueberries maybe he'll also like other frozen fruits???<br><br>
My kids love frozen grapes. I wet them a lil and roll them in just a little bit of sugar and freeze them. They don't taste nearly as good without the sugar. Something about freezing them makes them less sweet. But they luv em that way.<br><br>
If he likes peanut butter (we buy the natural kind, not Jif or any of that crap) you can try making peanut butter boats. We smear PB on celery stalks or apples. They love those too and they love making them.<br><br>
We also like making our own mini pizzas. It can be a lil messy and somewhat time consuming, but it's really fun for them and even for us adults to an extent. :LOL I buy a can of regular biscuits (the larger ones) and a jar of pizza sauce and lots of shredded cheese and layout a rolling mat and let them roll their own and I put out little bowls of different toppings and let them put on what they want. I've gotten them to try all different kinds doing it this way. They used to only eat pepperoni (youngest daughter) and mushroom (oldest daughter)..but now they'll eat ones with ham and pineapple and taste a few others.....every bite counts IMO <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 

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ok..I just did a search to try and find the brand of "milky stuff" I was talking about <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngtongue.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Stick Out Tongue"><br><br>
It's called Pediasure and it comes in 5 flavors. Vanilla (Regular and with Fiber), Strawberry, Chocolate, Banana Cream, and Orange Cream. I don't think it has any milk in it...but not positive.
 

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Can I give another perspective? Why are you making this your problem? Research has shown that one of the main causes of obesity and eating disorders is "food rules". I guess as with breastfeeding, your kiddo has his own hunger and fullness cues and should be supported in following them. In other words, you don't have any control over when he's hungry or if he's hungry, or how much he eats, just what you offer him to eat.<br><br>
As practical advice (what I have used with my dd) I would simply state, "Are you hungry for lunch?" If he says no, say "OK". If he says yes, offer him a few choices, "You can have salad or a sandwich, or some eggs, with any fruit or veggie you want". If he says, "I don't want any of that!", ask him what he does want. I STRONGLY suggest only having healthy foods in the house for him to choose from. Kids often get into the "dessert is a reward for eating "good" food" kind of thinking that can be dangerous. Then it's easy to say, "We don't have any mac n cheese, but we do have pasta with tomato sauce". If he still says he doesn't want anything, say "OK, let me know when you decide what you want".<br><br>
You are in a power struggle that will have no winners. You will either break his spirit and "get him" to eat, or you will end up feeding him a bunch of crap and establishing a bad pattern. He will eat when he decides it's worth it to eat. Unless he's dangerously thin (and it doesn't sound like he is) I would try this for awhile and stay away from the pediasure - it's packed with sugar and carbs.<br><br>
JMHO. I sincerely hope it helps.
 

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Hm... seems like you have gotten yourself into one heck of a power struggle. I'm not sure how this works if your roommate stocks food that you don't want him to have, but what happens if you back off of the control completely? Stock the shelves (that he can reach or that he's permitted to visit) with healthy stuff. Same with the fridge. Let him eat what he wants, when he wants. Fix meals and offer them, but don't force anything. (Our only requirement is that the kids come to the table and sit down long enough to say grace.) Don't use food as a gate to something (you have to eat to get to go on an outing). I would bet dollars to donuts, um, made-from-sratch-whole-grain-unsweetened bagels that he eats more than you think he will and with better balance if you look at several days running. At the very least, you difuse the power struggle for a while. Then, if you completely can't deal with this approach to food, you can try to encourage stuff again and maybe it will be more successful. This takes the stress away from food, it allows him to be responsible for his own body, it respects his likes/dislikes/needs, and it make life easier for you. In return for those benefits, you give up some control (but you still have a lot because you have the money and control what comes in).
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
thanks, all. i *know*i have a major power-struggle going on! lol<br>
i am making this my problem because it's *my* child. my child is my problem.<br><br>
that said, it's not about hunger or fullness. i totally respect if he's not hungry. it's about manipulation, because he asks me for candy at 6am, before my eyes are even open, and he won't eat anything. well, not much.<br><br>
what i've decided to do is this. we are going on a candy strike. like i said before, it's not like i brought that much (or that often) into the home. but i think it's better not to have it at all, at least for awhile.<br><br>
this really started back at eastertime, when the roommates brought in this HUGE, i mean HUGE, bag of candy and they all had unlimited access to it all the time, for weeks. the 5yo was on easter break, and was home with the 15yo, my 4yo, and me, all day long, and she ate candy from sunup to sundown nonstop, in front of my son, every day that she was out of school.<br><br>
i didn't let my son have unlimited, but i have let him, during and since that time, eat "mainstream" candy, as much as once a week. then he started in on the "if i eat healthy food, can i have candy" and i didn't see a problem with that, so after meals i would let him have some. then he took it and ran. it started in constantly, and now with this "i can't eat i'm thinking of body parts" thing, as well as the "can i have candy" all the time; it's driving me nuts.<br><br>
plus the ice-cream man comes a couple times a week, stops right in front of our house, right at dinnertime. i told him he could get some once a week, that i was not going to pay $1.50 several times a week for the ice-cream man when we had (soy, non-GMO, non-refined sugar, no artificial stuff,and he doesn't know it's "healthier") ice cream right here in the house. so he says "well then i will buy it", and yesterday ran right down there with his own piggy bank to wait. what can i do about that? it is, after all, his money. but i don't want him to have bomb-pops instead of dinner. he would probably eat the dinner if there was no ice-cream man. or if he didn't eat the dinner, he would at least probably not balk about ice cream so much.<br><br>
anyway, so i decide to not bring any "bad foods" into the house anymore, and today my roommate brings in this HUGE box of mainstream, artificial colors/flavors, characters-on-the-box popsicles. and the 5yo sits right there and opens them up, right in front of my son, what could i do? be Big Bad Mama again? i let him have one. but i said he could only have one a day.<br><br>
anyway, about meals, i have decided to put little teeny bits on his plate, and if he doesn't eat, i'm going to do my best to shut up.<br>
i haven't figured out what to do about the nearly constant asking if he can have popsicles, ice cream, and candy, because the answer is nearly always no. i don't know what to do about him trying to go in the snack cabinet (which has chips, crackers, rice cakes, and cookie-type stuff) when it's mealtime.<br>
i mean, he really does constantly ask, from about noon onwards, if he can have popsicles and candy. we make popsicles here out of fruit juice and i don't have a problem with those; it's those artificially made ones, with refined sugar, that i have a problem with. if i let him, he would *constantly* eat that stuff from lunchtime till bedtime. i've let him, just to see.<br><br>
coming to the table, he won't do that, unless the other family's kids come. he copies what they do.<br><br>
my roommate did try to hide the box of popsicles, but the 5yo made a big deal out of it.<br><br>
<<<<I would simply state, "Are you hungry for lunch?" If he says no, say "OK". If he says yes, offer him a few choices, "You can have salad or a sandwich, or some eggs, with any fruit or veggie you want". If he says, "I don't want any of that!", ask him what he does want. I STRONGLY suggest only having healthy foods in the house for him to choose from.>>>><br><br>
as i said before, when i ask him what he *does* want, the answer is popsicles, candy, or ice cream. i also don't have complete control over what comes in the house because we have roommates, and they bring in stuff that i would *never* bring in, and we are allowed to share that stuff, and he knows it. and also the 5yo eats that stuff in front of him.<br><br>
so anyway, i will keep gathering suggestions. i'm sure i will form a plan that works. what my goal is, is to get him fed, off the junk, and our relationship improved.<br><br>
it's been hard, and i'm sure it will get harder before it gets easier, but thanks for listening.<br>
i'll keep reading!<br><br>
pamela
 

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It's hard when you're not in complete control of what's in the house. If it's not in the house, that's an easy answer! I have this problem at any of the relatives. Also we run into no-no foods at school and playdates sometimes. I try (not always successful) to only give and offer good foods, lots of protein and good things to keep him on an even kilter. If Grandma is giving him lollipops on the sly, I don't say a whole lot in front of him. I might to her, though! We also have the rule that "we don't eat that." I don't know how successful that would be for you with the 5 y.o. in the house all the time, but it works sometimes when we are around the cousins at their house. I have to bring a substitute goody. Do you bake? Maybe you could make some yummies that the 5 y.o. would like. You can put lots of good stuff in a cookie or cupcake. Grind up carrots, zucchni, nuts, 1/2 whole wheat flour, sweet potatoes or the like in them. Sometimes when DS has not eaten well and needs a snack, I give him the snack en route in the car or stroller. He will often eat then b/c there's not much else to do...sometimes we even do breakfast like this. If you don't go out of the house for another reason in the morning, you could initiate a morning walk in the stroller and at least start the day out good! Good luck. HTH.
 

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It sounds like he has joined forces with your roommates. I see this whole thing stemming from their influences on him. I think you need to have a serious talk with them before you can even attempt at dealing with your son. As roommates you all need to respect each others parenting styles and if don't want you son to eat junk then your roommates need to respect that and while they are free to eat it, it would be respectful to do it elsewhere and not in front of your son. It also sounds like you have had structure and your roommates do not.<br><br>
I honestly don't see how the stituation is going to get better with your son so long as you continue to live with these roommates. I don't think you need to cave into your beliefs and parenting style because your roommates do not agree with them. It would be like my family and my sisters family trying to live together. No way would that work without serious consequences to my family structure and all I have worked for.<br><br>
Food for thought.
 

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<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">i've told him that he could end up in the hospital with tubes, force fed, but even that doesn't sway him.</td>
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You're free to say as you choose... but please consider not telling him that. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> Maybe it's just me, but.... my parents always told me that when I was little, and it NEVER helped. My entire childhood was filled with memories of being forced, manipulated, and feeling SO ANGRY over food.<br><br>
I'm told that I used to eat "everything"... and suddenly, at a very young age (I don't even remember it), I wouldn't eat anything. All I would eat was.... chips, french fries, toast, candy, soda... NO meat, vegetables, or fruit. Literally. Every meal was a nightmare... I was constantly being forced to eat. I was so miserable. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> For YEARS, I was unable to get much of anything down without using soda to swallow it. I once choked on cauliflower because I started swallowing it whole.<br><br>
I could go on and on... but this post isn't about me. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/shy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="innocent"> I don't know what my parents SHOULD have done... but the manipulation caused a lot of problems. I can at least tell you that now that I'm older... I've slowly been able to eat food normally again. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> I don't have the best diet, but I am able to eat meat, fruit, vegetables... although I'm still picky. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"> And I don't need soda to swallow anymore!! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin"><br><br>
I'd be happy to talk with you more my experience, if you want. Either way.... just be careful. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>cjr</strong></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">It sounds like he has joined forces with your roommates. I see this whole thing stemming from their influences on him. I think you need to have a serious talk with them before you can even attempt at dealing with your son. As roommates you all need to respect each others parenting styles and if don't want you son to eat junk then your roommates need to respect that and while they are free to eat it, it would be respectful to do it elsewhere and not in front of your son. It also sounds like you have had structure and your roommates do not.<br><br>
I honestly don't see how the stituation is going to get better with your son so long as you continue to live with these roommates. I don't think you need to cave into your beliefs and parenting style because your roommates do not agree with them. It would be like my family and my sisters family trying to live together. No way would that work without serious consequences to my family structure and all I have worked for.<br><br>
Food for thought.</div>
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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/yeahthat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="yeah that">:<br>
I think the real problem is with your roomate not respecting your rules. Can you have a calm discussion with her about why you don't want junk food in the house?<br><br>
...wait... just re-read your OP. You moved into her house? Well, she gets to make the rules if it's her home.... ick. I don't know what I'd do. I would probably still try to talk with her about it, and at least ask her to keep all the junk food out of sight and out of reach. But I wouldn't be able to tell my kid she couldn't have something the roomate's kid is eating. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug"> I'm so sorry you are going through this. My 4yo DD knows that too much sugar makes her crazy and "sickish" (her word for it). Can you talk to your son about how candy makes him feel? Or does he not have that reaction to junk food? It's so much easier to get my kid to want to eat good stuff than to try to force her to eat what I want her to eat. I think I'd be looking to move ASAP.<br><br>
The ice-cream man seems like an easier one to deal with. Get him a piggy bank he can't get into himself. You still get say in what he buys, even if it is *his* money.
 

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My almost 4yo would eat popsicles all day if I let him too. He only weighs 27 lbs. and is seen by a pediatric gastroinerologist. One day I hid the popsicles in the back of the freezer and then he started eating real food the rest of the day. If it's not there he can't eat it, but your situation seems tough with the roomates. I know how hard it is to get them to eat, but only they can decide if their hungry and if they'll eat. I was forced to eat as a child, and it brings up bad memories for me. I have to remember that when I deal with ds and the times he won't eat. Good luck.
 

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I would say that peer pressure is playing a huge role here. It's very, very important for kids that age to fit in. They will copy other kids and kinda try walking in their shoes for a day. My dd will often come back from a playdate declaring that she doesn't like some food that I know she likes. When I press her about it she says, "I don't like it anymore because (friend) doesn't like it." It also goes the other way, "Apples are (friend's) favorite food and they are my favorite, too." This can apply to behaviors, phrases, favorite toys, basically everything.<br><br>
My toddler is tube-fed because of reflux and eating aversion. When she got her stomach tube at 7 mos old I asked many therapists, doctors, and other parents of tube-feeders when she would get off the tube. They *all* said at age 3-5 years old, because that's when she will want to start eating, after seeing other kids eat. I would imagine that the same factors are at play with your ds.<br><br>
Maybe you can have him around other kids who like to eat the things he eats and you might be surprised that he'll start eating them again. Otherwise as Karry said, just try not to have those foods in the house. Abi threw a fit about not getting her Trader Joe's cat cookies for breakfast the other day. I said we didn't have any more. She carried on and I said, "Okay Abi, if you can find them, you can have them" and invited her to search the kitchen herself. When she was able to do that, she then asked for, and happily ate, a banana and a yogurt instead.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
thanks again, all.<br><br>
i didn't move into roommate's house, we moved in together into a totally new house. but i didn't realize when i made that decision, how much of a struggle it would be, for us, regarding food and other behaviors (swearing, climbing, jumping, using stuff that is not toys, tantrums).<br><br>
i *have* talked to her. they do have a LOT less limits. she says she doesn't believe in limits for children; that they have to find their own limits, even if it takes years more than if you were to impose them. she wants her kids to be self-directed, and she thinks it is a good thing that my son is exposed to it because he didn't realize before that he could be free.<br><br>
she doesn't say any of this with malice; she truly believes that, and she does for the most part try to respect our limits. she just does not get heated up about stuff the way i do.<br><br>
her kids don't have bedtimes, either. the 5yo will be acting up (you know how) when she's tired and nobody puts her to bed; they will just say "are you tired?" or "can somebody read to her so she can settle down for sleep?" and this is at 10:30 at night on a school night. but they do, most of the time, try to be quiet so *we* can do our bedtime routine.<br><br>
it's true, if my son doesn't see something, he usually forgets about it after awhile. i do bake, and i am going to try to do more. also i am going to make popsicles with more things in them like soy milk, protein powder, yogurt, stuff like that.<br><br>
as for bringing junk food, she doesn't bring it in, if she goes shopping alone, but if the kids are with her, they each get to choose something that is not on the list-- whatever they want.the popsicles are what the 5yo chose. it was just very bad timing.<br><br>
my son did eat granola yesterday when he saw me eating it. he doesn't see me eat sugar, and sees me eating veggies and salad and fruit all the time. roommate (mom) has a pretty good diet but she's at work most of the time.<br><br>
what kinds of things can you hide veggies in? can you hide raw ones too? can you do smoothies or popsicles with raw stuff? in the blender?<br><br>
believe me, i *am* looking to move, but i can't do it before the lease runs up. i can't afford to.<br><br>
anyone interested in a community-style rental household in the asheville NC area? (LOL, i'm sure after reading this, none of you would want to live with me-- but i'm MUCH more easy-going than i appear here).<br><br>
thanks again,<br>
pamela
 

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I want to hear things you can hide veggies in, too!<br><br>
These are things I've tried/heard:<br>
smoothies (fruit), quick breads (zucchini, banana, carrot), spaghetti sauce (almost any veggie especially if you puree it), meatballs or "meat"balls, meatloaf, spanakopita-type cheese squares, omelets, macncheese, yogurt, pizza, homemade granola bars, jello molds.<br><br>
JK on the jello molds...just remembering all the gross jello concotions the moms made growing up! carrots in orange jello etc. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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I hide veggies in all sorts of different sauces, then mix it with pasta. It helps my very picky 4yo to pick what shape pasta she wants, and what flavor sauce (pesto, creamy, cheesey, tomatoey, etc). Then *I* pick a veggie or two (or more) and hide it in the sauce. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> I started doing it with spagetti to get DH to eat more veggies before we had kids. I would chop up the veggies really small so he wouldn't know what they were. One day he saw me chopping up squash and asked me "What in the world are you putting in that spag sauce?!!" and I said to him, "the same stuff I always put in it" :LOL ever since then, I haven't had to chop it up so small. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
 

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Maybe have a talk with him about how everyone likes different things, and that is ok? Dd and I talk about this a lot, because she (4) gets upset if a friend doesn't like her shoes, or (today) when dh and I didn't like the smell of her sunscreen (she will only use this super-scented Barbie sunscreen--yech--but seriously the only she will tolerate).<br><br>
Maybe point out some things that you like that he doesn't....and some things that he likes that you don't. Then you might talk about some things that the 5 yo likes that he doesn't, and vice versa. Dd seems to feel empowered by these talks--she seems to feel more confident about making her own choices, rather than following a friend.<br><br>
Other than that, maybe you could offer to babysit while the roommate shops :LOL. That way the kids won't be at the store to pick the nasty stuff!
 

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Some of this is his age!!!!!!! The park/play thing was him being busy plus maybe testing waters. Unlike babies 4 year olds can be manipulative. My youngest is really experimenting with this. When we go out and she has eaten poorly I bring snacks along, separate and feed, or leave early. When we leave early or step out I tell her she is having a hard time concentrating, playing nice, et because she did not give her body good food to run on. I also warn her that because she didn’t eat we will have to leave early. Not eating healthy foods makes for poor behavior. (I think all my kids went through this phase but my youngest has been the most strong willed on this matter.)<br><br>
Since you cannot get rid of the food you have to be firm. Other child is not yours, DC is and he will follow the rules.<br><br>
He will not starve himself, remember that.<br><br>
When I lived with my mil I had these battles. The food battle I tried to feed ds before nephews got there. Can you get up early? There was times dh would bring food up. Maybe you can bring a tray of food in your room to share with him in the morning. Maybe make meals different times. Don’t forget to give some of the treats. That might make it easier for him, knowing he will get them. Summer is here go on lots of picnics.
 
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