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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
my ds (13 months) doesn't want to eat in his highchair. what do you do, let him walk around with messy food? how do i handle this? we have been letting him walk around with string cheese and now he wants to walk around all the time or be held while we stand up and he eats. it is just getting too messy and too tiring.
 

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I let her eat standing up. She eats a lot more that way, with a lot less fuss. Since she's kind of tall and skinny to start with, I figure it's worth the mess. But we have a dog and a very adventurous cat so the mess doesn't stay for long. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Please help! how do i handle this? do i let him roam around the kitchen and put a gate up? i was thinking of trying one of those booster seats that strap to a chair so he uses the table but i think the issue is he hates being put in anything including his car seat.
 

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Yeah, do the gate thing if the mess is a big deal. This is a time of joyful food experimenting for toddlers. You wouldn't want to make food an issue by focusing too much on cleanliness.
 

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We stay flexible with mealtimes. DD is 16 months. Sometimes she pulls on the highchair and likes to sit in it. When she squirms, I put her down immediately. She likes to sit on my lap and eat. I just hold the plate and help her use the fork or spoon. (Which lately is her new fascination) She tends to eat more and stay focused with the utensils. She has self-fed up until this point.<br><br>
I have heard some moms say the booster seat works well too.<br><br>
I'm a big believer in NOT making mealtimes a battle. Toddlers love to roam and graze and IMO, it's a healthy way to eat. Now, my MIL thinks I'm nuts and teaching her to disrespect the allmighty mealtime. Whatever.<br><br>
So, I help her eat for as long as she's interested. Then, I leave the plate on the coffee table for awhile. She'll stop by for a few bites. Later, I set out some fresh fruit and a cup of ice water.
 

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That sounds great and all, but don't you get tired of providing food all day long?? I know that I provide 3 meals and 2 snacks for my 12 month old, and I feel like I'm in the kitchen all day long. I can't imagine letting my son just graze all day long. Do you just fix snacks and meals continuously?
 

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Let them wander freely with non-messy foods, do a snack tray in the living room or playroom. I think grazing is very important for this age. And encourage him to sit in the kitchen with you for messy foods, but don't push it. Just keep him away from the carpeting and upholstery with a gate or whatever.
 

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I cube up some cheese, boil and slice an egg, steam some broccoli, then they go in the fridge to be used as needed through the day. Pasta takes 10 minutes. I guess if I was making "meals" instead of just "food" every time I'd get tired of it.
 
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