6.04.2005

Mealtime Madness

Since turning one, I think Boo suddenly realized that he technically has ventured into the realm of toddlerhood and has gleefully taken on some of the typical characteristics of early toddlers. The biggest example of this occurs during mealtimes.

Boo has always loved eating. He ate up everything eagerly - peas, carrots, squash, bread, eggs, prunes, sweet potatoes, weird combinations made by mischievous baby food companies to see if people would actually buy said weird combination (blueberries pears and corn anyone?) - he ate it all up with a smile and a "yum, yum!" after a bite.

Suddenly, he has learned that he has choices and not only that, but that HE can actually be the master of that decision-making process.

Today it was all about the milk. Since he turned one last week, we tried whole milk in a sippy cup for the first time yesterday. I don't even think he could tell the difference. So he's completely off formula now and on to the good stuff (that would make us fat, bloated and gassy but somehow provides babies with the perfect blend of vitamins, fat and minerals without the old-people side effects). He loves it. But he loves it better in his bottle, so our routine yesterday and today has been to give him milk in a sippy cup, let him drink about an ounce, stage a quiet grumbling of a protest which includes holding the sippy cup above his head threatening to toss it down to the ground, then we switch it to a bottle and he gulps the remaining elixir down with a smile.

As for food food, he wouldn't have any of it today unless it was some sort of snack-type product or carbohydrate. Annie's all natural shells and cheese (with some steamed chopped carrots)? Not today, although he loved it last week (with broccoli). Yo baby yogurt, which he absolutely LOVES for breakfast on a normal baby day? Apparently toddlerhood doesn't call for the same yogurt (or even our Yoplait yogurt) in the morning anymore. Chicken bits from our salad? He wouldn't have anything today except for milk, Cheerios, fruit puff snacks, arrowheat cookies, bites from our waffles, fruit and oatmeal bars, and, surprisingly on this one, a whole wheat grape jelly sandwich. Oh, and he had a bite from my husband's chocolate chip cookie.

He's still pretty messy when he eats. Crumbs are everywhere, even 10 feet away. His sippy cup goes to his mouth and then the mouth smiles as the cup crashes onto the floor. After the jelly sandwich, which he used to comb his hair and create war paint onto his pants and shirt, we had a nice relaxing bath. I haven't even looked at his highchair to survey the full damage yet. I did a quick wipe down before his bath and called it good.

Supposedly, babies his age are like this. Highs and lows, likes on week are dislikes the next, solids only one day and milk only the next. It's pretty draining though, to try to figure out what your kid will eat at that moment, and then to do the song and dance from there. When he's old enough to talk and understand, I know there's know way we'd allow him to think that home was an open kitchen 24-7 catering to any whim of the moment, but for now, I know we're supposed to take his cues and go from there.

Boo still says "yum yum" when he likes something. And his smile when his taste buds are happy is the most beautiful site on earth. I just miss those times when the "somethings" that he liked was closer to everything instead of almost nothing.

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