How to make eating fun

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/09/10/how-to-make-eating-fun.html

never had any trouble getting my three to eat, nor to be adventurous eaters. They all have very varied and robust palettes.

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I would have used the Cthulhu theme plates for my kid, but we had Dora instead.

Six of one, half a dozen backpack gateways to the horrors.

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Fun? Hell no! Kids will eat when they’re hungry. With an epidemic of childhood obesity we shouldn’t make eating “fun”.

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According to dogs, eating is always fun.

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Kids don’t need fancy plates to eat sugary cereals, maybe in the interest of truth-in-advertising they should say “makes eating vegetables fun.”

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Wait, eating fun?
I didn’t know one was supposed to eat it.

Those are cute. Just spend hours prepping some food for the kids to reject. Swallow the bile of resentment. Rinse, repeat.

I hate this stuff. Make good food. The kids will get hungry eventually. Doing endless kitchen cartwheels in the hopes of getting little persons excited about eating nutritious food is basically another variation of wealth and status signalling. Most people don’t have the time or the money for such bullshit.

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“Back in my day, mealtime was a soul-draining gauntlet of existential horror! My dad even hid mousetraps in the mashed potatoes from time to time just to make sure we wouldn’t get too soft.”

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Back in my day one had to sit at the table until you finished eating what your parents put on your plate.

(I made it to 11:30 before my parents sent me to bed. Take that, Thousand Island dressing!)

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starve them for three days, then see just how fun eating becomes.

Food minus gravity and own portion control equals fun. Also Harriet Tubman Paints The Town Plates. Maybe if the ceramic u-glaze-it place opened a few years earlier…

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:laughing: This almost made me spit out my beer across the screen. Thanks

Also, if eating isn’t fun, there is something wrong. I can’t understand anyone not enjoying food

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I think of it this way: adult foodies ooh and ah about “presentation” and often spend a small fortune on fine china and flatware to enhance their dining experience.

Preschoolers are ecstatic if you give them a paper plate with a frog’s face on it.

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I don’t make truly fussy cute food for kids. Mine basically got whatever we parents were eating, sometimes with the chiles still in the mix. We eat very low on the food chain anyway, since we are all vegetarians and cheese is often a luxury item here.

I have made visually amusing or weird stuff for potlucks, esp. potlucks where I already know there will be plenty of regular food. I also am able to spend a lot less time cooking (yeah maybe the prep takes nearly the same amount of time) making some of the funny raw fruit or vegetables for potlucks but I don’t have to heat the house up in the brutal summer by having the stove on. That’s a win. I find it’s often the case that the fewer ingredients, the cheaper and faster to make, and sometimes the amount of food I have been asked to bring to potlucks is to cover 10-20 servings. Yikes!

The other win is that we grow a lot of our own fruit/veg, and it’s useful for me to pull stuff from the garden, cut off the bad spots and bug chomps, and figure out how to put edible “eyeballs” on the results.

We did used to do birthday pancakes because they were cheaper than birthday cake (I refused to buy). I also am no accomplished cake baker. I confess that, for the 5 years and unders, making goofy face birthday pancakes is a viable alternative especially if a few chocolate chips are put in poured batter. When I got offspring involved in making their own food, it was the best guarantee that they would eat it. Kids playing with their food starts to look a lot of meal prep, and I will not be the one to tell them that is my goal.

I had no prob letting kids reject stuff. Even the very young have strong opinions about what they like and don’t like. I also had no prob letting them go home hungry or if we’re talking about one of mine, skipping the meal entirely. No one ever died of hunger over here. And oh they were ready to eat, next meal.

Am constitutionally allergic to those cartwheels. I hear you.

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Let’s see - cute animal face. Suggested use - eat the food up and see the face. Reality - throw food off and see the cute face.

There’s too much focus in life on style over substance (and in food that means ignoring the base, the TASTE). And no, that’s not about making it salty/sugary.

The single best way to get kids to eat healthy is leading by example, and having variety of such snacks available daily. Yeah, that means peeling, cutting, etc.

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You’ve had my mother’s Shepherd’s Pie, then?

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I used to cut my peas into quarters and dip them in ketchup to get them down.

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It brought a tear to my eye when baby’s first words were:

"Ph’nglui mglw’nafh Cthulhu R’lyeh wgah’nagl fhtagn"

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