FOR PARENTS AND KIDS WITH PERSONALITY
No, I'm not suggesting you eat your toddler - I'm talking about the little ones who don't ever seem to eat, or who never eat the same food twice, or who scream at the dinner table.
What is it that makes them fussy eaters? What is it that makes toddler's picky?
Some of it is nature and evolution - a toddler is able to toddle, walk or run away from their parents which is SO MUCH FUN! But nature has ensured that they won't be likely to eat poisonous food/berries/non-food by making toddlers particularly fussy eaters - clever eh? Toddler's have way more taste buds in their mouths than us making it easier for them to identify food that is not safe to eat - food that is 'off', even just a little bit! Hence they will eat something one day, but not the left overs the next.
Unfortunately in today's world this isn't always helpful. Its frustrating and worrying for us parents. So what can we do about it?
Tip 1: Serve food buffet style. The more control a child has over what and how much they eat, the more likely they are to eat it.
Tip 2: Keep serving it up even if they don't eat it. A child needs to engage with a food 15 times before they will try it! Yes I know that might mean waste but you only need serve a little.
Tip 3: Eat with your child. If they see you eating the same food its more likely to feel like a safe food to them (eventually!)
Tip 4: Book on to my Toddler Eating Workshop to find even more ways for staying calm at meal times and giving your child good eating habits for life!
Good luck and I hope your tyrannical toddler starts loving and enjoying their food!
There's no denying that Christmas is a very special time of year. Especially with children around, it really is magical. In our family we love it - but its not without its stresses and strains! Hopefully these few things we've learned over the years will help you get through the most wonderful time of the year...
1. Focus on YOUR family: Try not to feel obliged; obliged to see Great Auntie Susan, obliged to visit second cousin Angus in Scotland or obliged to stay over at the Grandparents if you know it won't work for your family. Do what works for you - you have young children and anyone who loves you will understand. You can post presents, your children will grow and when they're older you can tour the UK at Christmas. You can also drive up to see the Grandparents/Great Aunt Susan later so you can keep the Christmas day (super) early morning excitement and fun (AKA meltdowns!) all to yourselves.
2. Keep your expectations low: Sometimes when we have kids we think life will turn in to a John Lewis advert...but no, thats not real life! You'll more likely just be glad no-one is climbing the Christmas tree, that you've had time to put a few baubles on it and that no-one has been sick down your Christmas jumper.
3. Outsourcing: Who can you pay to help you out when things get busy? Can you get someone to clean your house before the family arrive? Can you hire a babysitter to have some time out away from the chaos? Can you pay someone to wrap your presents up - some people do this for charity, so its doubly good! Can you get someone to do your ironing? This is the time to outsource where you can!
4. Don't take your eyes off them: When my son was a toddler and we were visiting a friend, he happily took a present from under their tree and merrily unwrapped it. Hilarious now. Back then - embarrassing! If your little one is crawling or toddling, get eyes in the back of your head. Or chat, enjoy your mulled wine but be prepared for CHAOS!!!!
5. Get some down time: I've already mentioned babysitters...but what can you do to chill out amongst the tree and the sea of presents? Get out for a meal with your other half? Meet some friends for a Christmas drink? Snuggle up in front of a Christmas movie? Just today I have been for a wonderful Indian head massage and reflexology session! Make sure you make time for you and get a break however it suits you.
I hope these few tips result in a fun loving, stress free Christmas for you and your FunkyFamily.
Wishing you a wonderful Christmas!