Sunday, January 25, 2009

Number Two

My last post described how sleep is the number one thing Morgan doesn't like. The number two thing she doesn't like is meal time. This has been one of our biggest struggles since she started to eat solids. Meal times have always been a battle. At first, we would let it slide. We didn't want to argue about food since some of the *experts* say that will lead to some sort of an eating disorder. Once we realized that meal time was turning Mark into a short order cook and her diet was consisting of chicken nuggets, carbs and more carbs, we decided things had to change. But that change came with a price. A price of arguing and threatening and tears. So we sat down and came up with some written, consistent table rules.

1) Sit and stay seated during meal time. If you get up or don't come to the table when it is ready, you get a warning. Second offense is a time out. Third offense is straight to bed.
2) You must eat three bites of everything we are eating. You will sit at the table until you do this, or until your bedtime. If it becomes your bedtime during your hold out, you will go straight to bed without stories.
3)Mom and Dad will sit with you for 10 minutes after we are done eating. If you have not eaten your three bites by then, we will leave the table.
4) You must eat all your plate to get any other food.
5) Wednesday is Morgan's Choice Night. She gets to pick our menu for that night.

We have implemented this rules for one week now and here is the results:
1) She has not had a time out or had to go to bed for not sitting at the table.
2) She has eaten three bites of food with minimal fuss. We still gets some tears followed by I don't like this (even if she's never tried it) but it is short lived and less dramatic. She has discovered that she does, as a matter of fact, like wild rice, chili and squash.
3) Only once have we had to leave her alone at the table. The offending food was fish and it took her 20 minutes after we left to eat her three bites.
4) She picked (Surprise Surprise) Mac and Cheese for her night. Mark added a salad to the table and Morgan actually asked for some salad for herself. She ate a whole bowl of it!

I'm sure we will have some bumps in the road, but right now, this plan seems to be quite the success.


Shey said...

Congratulations! I may be borrowing some of your strategies, as we have similar problems with Connor! The only part that probably wouldn't work is the three bites rule. I think he would just go to bed at the table every night rather than take three bites. :( He is that stubborn.

jamielblev said...

I'm glad you found something that works. We do a 1 bite rule. Shelby is the worst when it comes to trying new food. She will literally make herself throw up.

Heather said...

That's a great plan and Morgan is doing so well!