Kids are Amazing. Fun. Smart. Wonderous. Their sleep habits seem to change with the wind. They’ll eat things off the floor but refuse perfectly good food on their plate, and they somehow manage to make mealtimes less enjoyable. There are ways to help your baby or toddler become a good eater – and by good, I mean not picky. There are also ways to make mealtime more fun. Ways that don’t add up to too much extra effort from you, but may pay off in more food eaten. A win all around if you ask me.
Having a more fun Lunchtime with your Toddler
1. Serve it up in something new
Muffin tins, lunch boxes, cups, whatever you can fit food in, and your toddler can easily and safely get their food out of is open for use. Sometimes serving lunch in something out of the ordinary can make whatever it is your serving more enjoyable.
2. Shape it any way you – or they – like it
Use small cookie cutters to make fruits and veggies into fanciful shapes or put your knife to work and make/take that PB&J to the next level by asking your child what shape they want their sandwich. Triangles, rectangles, squares, strips? They’ll enjoy the power you’ve given to them, and you’ll enjoy their excitement over their regular old sandwich.
3. Construction work in progress
Sometimes just putting all the pieces on a plate to let little hands do the construction will win you “Lunch of the Year” honors from your toddler. Kids love to be in charge of their food. Even if you set pre-cut pieces of bread, lunch meat, and cheese on a tray, they’ll have a blast “making” their lunch. Remember the craze that was the Lunchable in the 90’s? Enough said.
4. Deconstruct things
A hot dog is okay. A deconstructed hot dog is fun. A slice of pizza is okay. All the slices of a pizza loaded onto a skewer is fantastic. Rethink how you build your toddler’s lunch and keep them on their toes. Giving them a new way to eat a meal will score you points and will possibly allow you to sneak in something new and fun too.
5. Take it on the go
Seriously. Pack up your lunch, get out, and go somewhere fun.