There are three things I want to start doing. Let’s call them New(ish) Year’s Resolutions.
- Eliminate food dye from my kid’s diet (at a minimum) and my own. I haven’t done all the reading about this that friends of mine have done, but I know enough to know that food dye is no good, especially red 40. I’m guessing that they have long-term physiological effects, but I am sure they have short-term behavioral effects and why would I want to make it harder for him to control himself and make my parenting job harder? Does he really need chewable vitamins/chocolate syrup/cake from a mix/a thousand other things? Fortunately, he doesn’t regularly consume any of those things and when I did an inventory, there is almost nothing that he regularly eats that has Red 40 in it, but I want to be more diligent about it, even for occasional things. We don’t allow chocolate near bedtime and he knows this. There is no reason not to throw food dye in there, too.
- Save money for a specific item. There are things I really want, but don’t need and I think this is a great opportunity to show The Who how putting a little bit of money away every week will eventually yield a significant amount. He doesn’t have a great concept of money yet, but he does understand that you need to pay for things and that we work to make money. He also saves coins to donate to the charity of his choice (library last time; this time, he is saving for the homeless) but I don’t think he has a handle on saving money for things we personally want. On the one hand, it’s nice to be able to get him what he asks for and because he doesn’t ask for much, we can do that. But at the same time, having to work toward something seems to be a valuable lesson. First up: a waffle iron! This is not only something that I’ve been wanting, but that The Who will love, too.
- Get The Who to eat some veggies. The kid does not like them. Fortunately, he is not terribly hard to convince to give things a try, but he does not take well to green things. He will often say, “Why did you give me this brussel sprout? You know I don’t like them.” He eats a good deal of fruit and so I haven’t been terrible concerned about his complete lack of veggies (leaning heavily on the notion that “fruits and veggies” can be interchangeable because they share the same spot on the food pyramid) but I want to help round out his palate. Recently, I got him to experiment with raw snap peas (not the pods) because they make a fun pop in his mouth. He doesn’t like the mealiness of the bigger ones, but happily ate at least ten of the smaller ones at dinner. Any ideas on how to introduce veggies to kids (without “sneaking” them into things — I don’t want to deceive him) are appreciated.