It's getting more and more difficult to feed Eliot. He's getting quite sick of baby food and wants whatever we're eating, which, unfortunately, is usually total crap that I'm not thrilled about giving him. At breakfast this morning he clamped his lips shut and kept turning around and pressing his face against his highchair back, trying to hide from the banana-strawberry tapioca loaded spoon. I managed to get him to eat a few Cheerios, but then he started flinging them off onto the floor, so I finally broke down and gave him a poptart. But then he was pissed because I broke the poptart into pieces, when what he really wanted was the entire, intact poptart.
I've begun to learn that the name of the game in getting food in the child is distraction and trickery. If I can get him interested in picking up Cheerios and the relative novelty of feeding himself, then I can sometimes sneak bites of what I really want him to eat in between the Cheerio bites. And when that didn't work this morning and the poptart didn't satisfy (because I was NOT giving him a whole poptart and then having to Heimlich him), I gave him a sippy cup with water to drink/play with. I'd tip it up for him and give him a drink, and then when he opened his mouth for another drink, I'd slip a spoonful of tapioca into it instead. Very tricksy indeed.
This whole sneak attack routine reminded me of when I was little and Mom used to trick me into eating stuff I didn't want or didn't like. That woman would lie through her teeth about whether she put nuts in the cookies. And when I'd call her on it, she'd claim, "Rachel, they're chopped so fine, you can't even taste them." To which I would inevitably retort, "If you can't taste them, then WHY put them there in the first place?"
But the worst was definitely the homemade ketchup. Mom would make homemade ketchup, which was this incredibly time-consuming, labor intensive endeavor that made the whole house absolutely REEK. We ALL hated homemade ketchup. Hated the way it made the house smell, and hated the taste of the stuff when it was done. It tasted like it came directly from actual TOMATOES. Ugh. To get us to eat it, Mom would save and wash out empty Heinz bottles and then refill them with the noxious stuff. I swore I would NEVER DO THAT TO MY KIDS.
Never put nuts into their chocolate chip cookies, never replace their beloved smooth red sugary ketchup with tomato paste, never give them Tylenol crushed up in jelly.
Ha. Yeah, right. If I could fill a Heinz bottle with banana-strawberry tapioca and squirt it into Eliot's mouth and get him to swallow it, I would totally do it. Except it'd be a Brook's Rich N Tangy bottle. I'm strictly a Brook's Rich N Tangy girl these days.