Mom-I-am! How to get the stinker to eat?!

posted on: Monday, July 28, 2008

If Sam-I-am is a parent then he's pretty amazing! I realized this weekend after reading "Green Eggs and Ham" for the 127th time to my son that Sam-I-am is the bomb/my new hero. Here I am slaving away in the kitchen making healthy things for him to eat (nothing as cool as green eggs and ham, of course) and he just doesn't want to eat them. Not here or there or anywhere. You've read the book, you know how Sam offers the dish to the sticker on a train, on a boat, in a house, with a mouse. Sam is persistent and most importantly totally good attitude. He knows that if the stinker just tried the dang thing he'd like it. I've been bending over backwards trying to get my own little stinker to eat and I am NOT as good attitude as Sam. If I'm successful it's only because

A) I bribe him
B) I convince him that ____ (fill in with current obsession, i.e. Thomas the Train, Elmo, dinosaurs) eats his food and that if Enzo ever wants to be a dinosaur then he too must eat his mashed potatoes and fish.
C) I make it a competition. This is my least favorite because I am not a competitive person but it totally works. I put food on a plate that is decorated with animals and I tell him that if he doesn't eat his food fast the animals on his plate will eat it first. He's all about competing with the two dimensional animal drawings. In the mind of a two year old this makes perfect sense, of course.

I know this is bad parenting. I never said I was a good parent but I do love my child and I want him to eat something other than rice cakes. If I don't get new ideas fast I'm totally going to turn into the evil version of Sam-I-Am. Instead of offering to feed him with a fox, I'm going to feed him TO a fox.

Any thoughts on how to get my 2 year old stinker to finally say...

I do so like
________ and ______!
Thank you!
Thank you,


  1. Oh, the trials of a mom. I totally understand. I try to incorporate healthy food into the things they like. (peas in mac and cheese)...I also bribe them (if you finish all your food, you can get an animal cracker).
    They will thank us later when they are strong and healthy.

  2. I wish I coul help you, but Chris is giving me the hardest time to eat. In fact, I am part of your club now. I have actually posted 2 books that kida helped me if you want to take a look.
    Good luck!

  3. Da, you are sooo creative--I can't get over it! I love it, though. I'm sorry your boy won't eat your deliciously healthy foods. :( I know that right now I just think that if my kids won't eat, then I won't make them and will just wait till they come to me, so hungry, but I'm sure that when i actually have my own, I won't be able to be so cruel! I think all the moms (of toddlers) I know are in the same predicament as you most of the time. Don't worry. Things'll pick up sometime! and he will be grateful for all the food you make for him!

  4. hahaha, I never thought of that book in that way! Who knew Dr. Suess was all on it with parenting tactics?
    I've been a bad mom and haven't cooked for my kids in almost 2 weeks (attributed to hospital visits and moving...)
    Though I have noticed that my kids are trying new things in the mean time, probably because I'm not making anything else. I know this totally goes against our deep cooking beliefs, but I stopped cooking for awhile, unvoluntary, and slapped some raw fruit and veggies on the table. My kids still don't like them, but they are trying them everyday to see if the taste changed from yesterday. :) If they are hungry, they will eat.

  5. It's hard to get any kid to eat, never mind a toddler! I have no clue on how to get him to eat more of what you want him to eat, but as long as he eats something and is developing well, just relax! Kids are happy when we as parents are happy!

  6. I am not a Mom yet, but I have nieces who were very picky eaters. I made their food into faces or animals. We used cookie cutters to cut out the bread and the toppings for the bread.

    I was also concerned about my nieces eating vegetables and healthy foods so I bought the book Deceptively Delicious. You don't have to buy the book to get the recipes because they are online at the Oprah site. or here:

    Here's some pics of the foods too:

  7. Different things work with different kids. What worked with my elder son is not working with my 18mth old. Recently I discovered that if he rejects his food I remove it. I take away his cutesy spiderman plate and plastic cutlery and dump the whole thing on my good china and sit on the couch and start eating!Amazingly he'll come up to me and open his mouth and start eating cause he thinks it's my food. This is working this month. I know next month it may not but I'm going with it for as long as it lasts


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