Tips To Get Kids To Try New Foods

~ Posted on Monday, January 20, 2014 at 8:09 AM ~

For today's post, I would like to share with you all our tips in getting our kiddos to try new foods, do remember each child is different and what works with ours might not be the same for yours, but at least, you have some general ideas on what to do / try:

 

Start when they are young

When I say young, I mean, when they are still innocent and naive to know what is happening. Hahahaha... for example, around 8-9 months old we started our 1st child with oats. This is after the failed attempt of giving him rice (for rice porridge). Amazingly, our 1st child accepted oats with no issues. In fact, there was once a phase where our child could go on oats for all his meals day after day! Oats after oats, sometimes with raisins, sometimes banana slices, mango slices, chunks of chicken meat or fish, broccoli, cauliflower anything I can find, I just add them onto his oats. For our 2nd child, Alyson started taking oats around 2 years old, she's not very much into oats before that so I never continued trying until after she turned 2 years old and to my surprise, she can also take the oats plain as it is.

 

Show them yourself

Okay, I'm not really a good example in this especially when it comes to eating vegetables. I made sure I included them when our kids started solids but I myself don't take them unless I was forced to. Guilty as charged! Anyway, what I'm trying to say in this tip is, you want your kiddo to try new food? You show them by trying it yourself first. And make sure if it is also new to you, to keep your facial expression as positive and cheerful as you can. Never show them yucky, gross, ewww face as that will surely leave a bad impression to them on that food.

 

*** Left: Benjamin taking oats, Right: Alyson trying rice

 

Make it fun and exciting

I have done the aeroplane, train, rocket spaceship, anything you can think of... just hold the spoon with the food in it and enact an amazing journey or experience as you zoom closer to your child's mouth. You can make splashing, crashing, etc etc sounds. Anything as long as it sounds fun and exciting!


Find something your child can relate to with that food

As a parent, you would definitely know your child's likes and dislikes. Use that to your advantage!

For our 4.5 years old boy, he was never a fan of soup for the first 4 years of his life. After he turned 4 years old, we tried getting him to drink soup. One time, my MIL made this vegetable soup which was green in color and as our boy was crazy with Green Lantern and soldier stuff at this phase, we told Benjamin that it was a Green Lantern soup. It will make him healthy and strong and let his antibodies fight off viruses and bacterias if he drinks it. He tried and since then, was the biggest fan of soup. True story!

 

Gently remind them if you see other children taking the food

Some parents use this method, meaning peer pressure method. Let your child see other children eating the food and just gently let them know that other children are enjoying the food and maybe they want to give it a try too? Don't push or force if your child insist not to try though. You don't want to traumatise or give them a negative impression on that food.

 

Make it a competition or race

We have only recently tried this approach, which is to make it look like you are going to compete to eat the food with your child. As if that will be the last ever food left. Or in our case, we make it a big deal after our kiddo tried out the new food by sighing and 'complaining' loudly to them that we are going to have to fight to eat that food from now on especially since our kiddo tried the food and is okay with it. For example:

Me: Ben, come try this soup. It's very nice!

Ben: No.

Me: Okay fine! Good also you don't want it, else I have to fight with you next time we have this soup. In that case, I won't have enough for myself!

Ben: No! I want to try!

Me: No, no, no! Better you don't try it! I don't want to fight with you!

Ben: NO! I want!

And then you 'reluctantly' gave them try some and when they really don't like it, you go 'Okay, nevermind at least you tried! Good job!' or if they really like it, you go 'Oh man! I'm going to have to fight with you next time already! Arghhh!!' and smiled cheekily along with them. Win-win!

 

With 3 kiddos in the family now, it is getting harder to comply with everyone's tastebuds whenever we have our meals. Of course, every now and then we do have those 'Arghh.. what-the-heck-just-go-with-the-flow' moments but do remember, this post is more on the approaches we used to introduce new foods to our kiddos.

So do you have any other tips to share?

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Establishing Our Daily Routine...

~ Posted on Wednesday, January 15, 2014 at 7:48 AM ~

Our first child had officially started his preschool on 6th January 2014. My baby boy in a blink of an eye is going to preschool now! With him away for 4 hours every weekdays, I now have more time to spend with our 2 girls. So we are in the process of establishing our daily routine now. My daily weekday schedules goes something like this:

  • 07.00 am : I woke up.. wanting to press the 'Dismiss' option but carefully pressed on the 'Snooze' option on my handphone alarm clock...

  • 07.10 am : Okay, it's time to wake up now... Brush my teeth, freshen up, change into my going-out casual wear

  • 07.15 am : Went downstairs to kitchen and whipped up some breakfast for our boy. Menu so far tuna cheese bread toast, peanut butter bread toast, egg mayo bread toast and oats with apples.

  • 07.30 am : Woke our boy up and get him ready - brush teeth, wash face, quick hot shower, change of clothes, wear socks, sit next to him, and make sure he takes his breakfast. At this point, Alyson's turn to wake up. Brush her teeth, wash her face, change her diaper.

  • 08.30 am : Get ready to leave the house, normally I bring Alyson along so she can see what is happening and get the fact that her older brother is not missing, just gone off to classes.

  • 08.40 am : Arrived home, get ready make breakfast for Alyson and feed her.

From this point onwards until 11.30am, I can be doing the following:

  • Bathing our girls.

  • Breastfeeding our 3 months old cheeky Carolyn... well come to think of it, I breastfeed her on demand, so as and when it is necessary...

  • Most of the time, when Alyson sees me breastfeeding her baby sister, she will also want to have her share. So, tandem nursing.

  • I have also started getting Alyson to play with flash cards. Teaching her things like object names, similarities (same grouping like food, vehicles, colors, etc) while at the same time, entertain Carolyn as well.

  • I also keep Alyson busy by alternating her toys, either flash cards, blocks (Duplo or wooden blocks) and wooden beads toys. Will consider dough soon (she has never play dough solo)

  • Another thing that I have to do as and when necessary is handling the paperwork and administration side of hubby's IT business. There are times I need to rush out quotations, invoices or purchase orders, liaising with suppliers and clients, housekeeping the bills and statements for filing and claims later on (I compiled for a few months and process the claims)

  • So when I am busy breastfeeding Carolyn or doing business tasks, I also let Alyson watch bible action songs on TV. I'm glad she enjoys watching the songs and she even dances and sings along to the songs as well. Win-win!

  • 11.30 am :Time to prepare lunch so that Benjamin can start having his lunch when he gets home. At this point, I really can't entertain 2 girls while preparing food and cook. So I am currently trying this method: We have another playpen downstairs in the kitchen where we put Carolyn in when we have our family dinner there. I will gather some toys into a box and bring along downstairs, put both girls into the playpen and let them play. Well, Carolyn will be lying there gazing at something while Alyson will be investigating the toys and playing. The playpen is just few feet away from where I stand in the kitchen so I do monitor them every now and then while I prepare our lunch.

  • 12.00 pm : Lunch done! I have about half an hour to wind down and rest a bit after the chaotic lunch preparation (and the stress of dealing with our 2 girls while preparing lunch!)

  • 12.40 pm : Load our girls into my car and went to pick up Benjamin from his preschool. If my car is parked further, I will bring them to the nearby playground so that they can play a wee bit. Have so far do this once.

  • 01.10 pm : Got home, get ready lunch for kiddos.

  • 02.00 pm : If I'm lucky, all kiddos will finish their lunch by now, including me. And Carolyn. Again.

  • 03.00 pm : The challenge starts now. We are in the process of cutting down our kiddos' TV and iPad usage so I have to come up with some activities to fill up their day (BOTH NO LONGER NAPS IN THE AFTERNOON THANK YOU VERY MUCH) so that they will not bug me for TV and/or iPad.

Between 3-5pm, we have so far done the :

  • Lego, block toys.

  • Cycling at our porch.

  • Let the kids run around at our porch.

  • Once they are done with cycling and running at our porch, we head back upstairs and I let them play in the water pool at our balcony. Water pool time can be around half hour.

  • Then it is off to bath them again.

  • If kiddos are hungry during these hours, I will either give them fruits or biscuits for tea break.

  • I also keep them busy by letting them hang out in the playroom. We read books there and just once I managed to take a 5 minute power nap while Carolyn gurgles next to me, Alyson flipping through some books and Benjamin playing in his 'camp' (play tent)

  • 05.00 pm : Time to get ready to prepare for dinner. Nowadays I have included Benjamin in some of the easier tasks such as scooping out the rice, washing the rice and letting him switch on the rice pot. Some other food preparations that Benjamin gets to help out: stirring eggs, preparing orange juice, adding water. Don't forget the stress of handling 3 kiddos now while preparing dinner.

  • 06.30 pm : Dinner ready by this time. All we have to do is wait for daddy to come home from work.

  • 08.00 pm : Dinner done, dishes cleaned and dried. I will settle the laundry if there are any (usually every 2-3 days) and then take my bath (yes, no bath since 7am until now mmm... mmmm...) Hubby will be bullied by all 3 kiddos during this time.

  • 08.30 pm :  Get ready for bed. Reading books or let kiddos play with daddy. And since we are still at the iPad / TV cutting down exercises, we allow our kiddos to watch just 1 show on iPad (either hubby or I choose, show not more than 10 minutes) and both dutifully complied when the show ends and they start to sleep.

  • 09.00 - 09.20 pm : Both Benjamin and Alyson will be asleep by now. Left Carolyn to bully me hahaha...  

 

Now I get to rest a wee bit more, although it will be interrupted one as Alyson has been having nightmares lately so from this time until she wakes up at 7-ish am the next day, she will be waking up crying for about 3-4 times still. Yes, please don't go thinking I'm free 9pm onwards. A mummy's work never ends. And don't forget the breastfeeding on demand.

So that's about our routine so far based on the first week we survived through hahahah... will definitely need tweaking here and there. Some of the things we want to incorporate into our routine:

  • We hope to be settling down into a more organised and fixed routine once everybody get used to it.

  • Based on the preschool teacher's feedback, we will be going full steam on to cut down the TV and iPad time for our kiddos so that our boy especially can concentrate in his class and do not depend on electronic gadgets for fast thrill or instant gratifications. Currently the maximum time both kiddos get with the TV AND iPAD is not more than 1 hour a day. And we are still cutting down. We'll see how it goes from then.

  • I hope to have more uninterrupted time to learn cooking and try out more dishes.

  • I also hope to be able to come up with more activities for our kiddos to distract them away from TV and iPad.

So there you go! Thanks for reading my post! Wish us luck!

** Note: I have disabled the commenting feature on my blog engine thanks to all the spammers who happily spam my blog every day. If you wish to ask me any questions, you can find me at my Facebook page (I'm there almost everyday) or just drop me an email if you wish to maintain some anonymity.

Fancy Prom Dresses

~ Posted on Friday, January 10, 2014 at 3:38 PM ~

I never have the opportunity to wear a prom dress in my life. No prom nights in high school, not in college either (that's because I only attended college a year before I had my first IT job) So whenever I watch any TV shows where the girls get to choose and wear their beautiful prom dresses, I would imagine how nice it would be to look princes-sy and gorgeous - even just for a night.

If I have the chance, I would go for something frilly, but definitely floor length dress (like a princess of course!) and if can, in my favorite purple color! I'd choose this design shown below:

Now I don't have experience in wearing a prom dress but I would think getting one is similar with how you buy your clothing. Things to consider when getting  a prom dress are:

Comfort : You MUST try on your dress before deciding on it. Even though you are wearing it for a few hours, you still should feel comfortable wearing it. You don't want to be pulling or tugging at your dress or frantically look for a safety pin when there's any unforeseen issues.

Style : It's a once in a bluemoon event, of course you would want to look your prettiest and yet still in style! I would think best to research for the current fashion style as one of the factors in deciding on your prom dress!

Return Policies : I don't think we would want to keep the dress right? So, be sure to check out the return policies of the dress such as when you have to return it, whether you can get full refund or so on.

Accessories : Remember to consider the accessories that can go along with your prom dress. Jewelry, undergarments and so on are some of the essentials that you must remember!

Mind sharing what is your prom dress style?

** Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. All thoughts, opinions and words are 100 % my own.