Sunday, May 16, 2010

'Tude and Tigger

I've mentioned before that I take care of a 10 month old daily, and one or two days a week, I also get a three-year old and his 10 month old brother. 'Tude is the 3 year old (guess why!) and Tigger is my every-day, bouncy baby. For security reasons, I will withhold their actual names.

Early last week, while I was working on my quilting design wall (a 6 yard piece of fleece, cut into 2 two-yard pieces, sewn together to create a 110" x 120" neutral colored backing to hold quilt blocks for placement, allowing me to visualize the finished product without Pepe running through the mess), 'Tude's monther sent a text to ask if I could watch him for a few hours while she ran some errands. Of course I could. When she dropped him off, I had the fleece spread out on the floor measuring the grid I'm sewing into it. I started to roll/fold it up, and 'Tude began walking on it. I "suggested" he take his shoes off, and feel it. So we ended up laying on it, stroking the fabric and talking about how it felt.

I can't remember why, but I ended up putting in a cd of classical music for us to dance to. We listened to the music, talked about what it sounded like (bouncy, light, heavy, loud, soft, etc) and what kind of animal might move that way. Then, we pretended to be that animal while the song played. As we danced, 'Tude made the comment "Stay on the dancing blanket!" So, we danced on the "blanket". Now, I need to make a "dancing blanket" for us, since this particular one already has a purpose. (Tigger is the teeny one you see in the background of the pic - he didn't pretend, but while we were being tigers, he was our dinner, and we "gobbled" his neck and belly, to his eternal delight)

'Tude also does not enjoy eating. No, it's not that he won't eat healthy foods, he just won't eat food. Period. His diet consists mainly of liquid nutritional supplements. I have made it my own personal challenge to get him to eat food, healthy or not, but healthy preferably. And since with my b'day money I finally got my food processor, this has become much easier. Last week, I made Sneaky Chef chocalte cupcakes (I called them muffins) with spinach and blueberry puree. Delicious, and he loved them. Today, I made the orange puree and the white puree.

The orange puree is made with carrots and sweet potatoes. You can add this to Grilled Cheese Muffins, canned Spagetti-os, Taco Soup, or added to ketchup or barbeque sauce to make them a bit healthier. Yum. The white puree is peeled zucchini and steamed cauliflower. In the future, I will make white puree when I make green puree (spinach, broccoli, and peas) because I hated throwing out the zucchini peels! The white puree can be added to Complete Corn Muffins, canned Spagetti-os, mashed potatoes, or added to mustard or mayonnaise. Basically, I made full recipes of each, because I'm planning to make foods to get the 3 year old to eat, and add them to my own foods so that DH and I can eat a bit healthier too. Yummy.

Now, before anyone says what I used to think: adding these purees really is worth it. My original opinion when Sneaky Chef came out was that adding a 1/4 cup here or there wasn't going to really give the kids the nutrients they need. But think about this. For children up to the age of 3-5, the serving size of vegetables is 2-3 ounces. A quarter cup = 2 ounces. Most of the recipes call for 3/4 cup. If most of the foods you serve your kids have sneaky ingredients in them, by the end of the day, 3-5 year-olds have eaten their daily requirement of veggies. And they never even knew it! The best part is, the food is really good. So good she even wrote a book for sneaking food into your own "adult" meals. And I have all of her books. Guess what DH and I will be eating for months to come...

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