Thursday, February 23, 2012

my kid versus your kid

I swore off parental smugness a looooong time ago since karma always seems to get you in the end. But it's really hard not to play the constant comparison game. Like yesterday we met some New York cousins for lunch at the Library Ale House and B. had the best time playing with their 3-year-old. They bonded instantly and started playing weird babbling games that only another little kid could understand or appreciate.
Carson Daly (yeah, the TRL guy) his girlfriend and their son were eating next to us and when we were wheeling the strollers out of the restaurant, she asked my cousin how old the boys are because her kid (who's the same age) doesn't engage as well with others. Score one for my social kid.
But the night before, we ran into a little friend from preschool, a.k.a. junior foodie, who was placing his own order for honey lavender biscuits with fried chicken from the LudoTruck. WTF? Meanwhile, B. was too shy to talk and refused to eat anything but cold sweet potato fries that had traveled with us since lunchtime. Not exactly a shining moment. But those biscuits...excellent! Thanks for recommendation, Jr.

how to sneak fruit into your kid's diet...if you don't mind lying

A couple of weeks ago B. asked for medicine. He was fine, he just wanted the chocolate payoff for swallowing amoxicillin. (Over Christmas we had to give him antibiotics three times a day and convinced him to swallow the pink liquid by plying him with M&Ms.) That's when it hit me like a bolt of lightning. I washed out a little glass bottle and filled it with fruit puree (Peter Rabbits Organics in mango, orange, banana), added a couple of drops of food dye and told him he could have a chocolate chip after his medicine. He tasted it, looked at me and said, 'Mom, this tastes like a fruit snack,' (it's been 6-8 months since he's had one so it's amazing he remembered) and kept on sucking.  
Now he takes his "medicine" twice a day. Only, I've switched to calling it vitamins because I can just see running into problems at school when he tells his teachers that he's medicated every day. And while four teaspoons of fruit a day might not seem like much, that's a lot compared to zero.
The crazy thing is he doesn't seem to find the taste offensive, but he still refuses to eat the fruit pouches. So even though I feel a tiny bit guilty for being so sneaky, it takes one master manipulator to fool another. Game on, little dude.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

we're peeing in the potty!

I don't think I've been this excited about B.'s bathroom habits since we brought him home from the hospital and had those nifty Pampers newborn diapers that changed color when he peed.
The boy who does EVERYTHING on his own timetable suddenly decided, midway through a bath, that he had to sit on the toilet last night. Out of the blue. With zero prompting from me because I know better than to push anything on him. Nothing came out so we tried again this morning and he peed. Major pee. Seriously, in any other context getting this excited about urine would just be super weird. But I was beginning to think B. was never going to come around. He had refused to even sit on the toilet until last night. And now that he's decided he's going to pee like a big kid he wants his own magazines, just like daddy. He was not impressed with EW or Sports Illustrated. So I just rushed out to Barnes & Noble to buy some reading material. And let me tell you, magazines for toddlers are in short supply. I wish this was somehow a niche I felt like I could fill but how many 2/3-year-olds are reading magazines while going to the bathroom? Educate me if I'm wrong!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

our weekend at the long beach aquarium

If B. doesn't turn out to be a paleontologist, marine biologist would suit me just fine. (Along with architect, hedge fund manager, studio executive or baseball player.)

For some reason he finds the divers way more fascinating than the marine life.

 The love of my life...snacking on cheesy bunnies.

Friday, February 3, 2012

tv is awesome

We've been watching LeapFrog: Letter Factory on a near constant rotation this week (thanks Teaching My Baby to Read for the suggestion). And even while TV's supposed to be the devil for little ones, it just hammers stuff home in a way that I can't do. What took me months to accomplish (singing our ABCs and recognizing uppercase letters - never mind sounding out those letters) this video has accomplished in about a week. We're also sounding out all the letters now and can tell the difference between upper and lowercase. The box is God. (Obviously it's a tag team effort but used in moderation I am such a fan. I give credit to General Hospital for teaching me what persona non grata meant 20 years ago when some slutty blonde temptress got kicked out of a party).
Even B.'s encyclopedic dinosaur knowledge got a boost from watching Dino Dan. We knew all the run of the mill dinosaurs - T. Rex, brachiosaurus and triceratops - but now he can tell the difference between a compsagnathus and a corythosaurus (I had to Google those just to get the right spelling), he knows the difference between carnivores and herbivores and is learning about the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous timeline. So I'll say it once again, TV rocks!

new stuff to worry about worrying about

If you worry your picky toddler isn't eating enough and you push snacks on them, you'll override their "satiety signal" and your kid could wind up chubbier by age three. So says a new study. But seriously? Like there's not enough to worry about, now parents have to feel guilty for encouraging their kids to eat. It reminds me of War of the Roses scene when Kathleen Turner gives her kids candy. "I read that kids who are deprived of sweets and candies all the time, they get obsessed by it and they turn out to be obese. Kids who get it all the time, it's no big deal, they turn out normal." The kicker is her kids get fat. You can't win for trying.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

miracles happen...

Even when B. was little (like 18 months little) and a good eater, he never picked off our plates or showed any interest in what we were eating. The kid just doesn't care that much about food. So last night while eating his 7,535th Nutella and peanut butter sandwich he looks at the lasagna on our plates and says, "I like lasagna, too." Wait up, whaaaaa? He's never even eaten lasagna and takes his noodles dry.
So I cut him a little slice that included shredded zucchini, red pepper and meatballs and he ate almost the whole thing, objecting only to the crispy bits on the edge that are my favorite. And then he walked away from the table as if nothing had happened. OMG. I'm still gobsmacked about it today. And I'm going to try and recreate the exact same conditions tonight. Lightning can strike twice, right?!

UPDATE: No more lasagna for B. He looked at me like I was crazy when I set the second plate in front of him and demanded plain noodles. Bah!

thanks Tina Fey...

For articulating exactly what I was feeling. This needs to be nominated for some funniest parenting clip of all time award!