vegetable kings and protein princes

“Mom, what can I have for snack?” The Kidling inquired at bedtime, every child’s favorite time to realize her need for sustenance. “I want yogurt. And cheese!”

“No, Sweetie you can’t have them both. They are in the same food group.”

“They are?” she asked. “Oh yeah!” she quickly recalled, “Dairy Queen.”

a sweet tooth (or two)

The Kidling has several loose teeth that have been hanging on for far longer than this first-time mama would have ever expected. So this afternoon, we did a little tooth check, assessing incisors and canines for any indication that they might be ready to call it quits (they are probably tired of listening to all of the yammering). We poked and wiggled, checking each of the potential candidates for dental defection. Content with our assessing of which tooth was most likely to fall out first, The Kidling said with relief, “I’m glad my sweet tooth isn’t loose!”

Somehow, I think she has a few extras.

too much fiber

“My tummy hurts. I feel like I ate the Wizard of Oz book. Yeah. But I didn’t.”

-The Kidling
January 20, 2014

adventures in eating

“I had crab arms before. And I liked them.”

-The Kidling
January 9, 2014

dietary consequences

“If you eat only fruit, then you’ll have diarrhea. And you’ll be a rainbow color.”

-The Kidling
December 15, 2012
(I just found a lost notebook…)

commentary on the food The Kidling wishes she was eating

“Recent Peanut Butter Cups are really good!”

-The Kidling
October 5, 2013

TBoTK take 2: our wee omnivore’s dilemma

In honor of the countdown to kindergarten,

81 hours, 58 minutes. Not that I am keeping obsessive, excited, fearful, worrisome, anxious track. Because I’m not. Doing that. Nope. Not The Mama.

I bring you The Kidling’s highlight reel, “The Best of The Kidling.” This blogpost details one of The Dada’s and my all-time favorite phases that our dear, darling, thoughtful, curious, mature, brilliant, unique child

Who is getting OLD. Seriously. Kindergarten? This is bullshit. I want an exchange. Can I get Toddler Kidling back?

went through: omnivorous conflict. Without further ado

Really? Nothing further? Surely I can kvetch just a little more? Right? “It’s my blog and I’ll write what I want to” and all that?

I bring you…


our wee omnivore’s dilemma

Not a wee dilemma; rather, a wee omnivore. With gratitude—and apologies—to Michael Pollan*…

Early last fall, The Kidling became keenly aware of the fact that her meat is derived from (previously) living creatures. The Family is technically omnivorous, but we are functionally closer to herbivores. The Mama does the cooking, and I love vegetables and can really take or leave a hunk of meat. That said, I do prepare it at least once a week, so The Kidling’s new insight made for an interesting few months at the dinner table.

In spite of Alice’s voracious appetite, she is a rotten little booger at the dinner table. Not, mind you, the breakfast, lunch, or snack table. Go figure. Dinner time is a textbook power struggle. She does everything but eat. Her typical dinner routine is:

  1. Happily fulfill dinnertime chore of putting napkins on the table;
  2. Sit down;
  3. Yell, “I have to go potty” and run toward the toilet;
  4. Return to the kitchen 5 minutes later with pants down, saying “I haven’t washed my hands yet, but I want to tell you [insert random story here]”;
  5. With pants still down, microstep back to the toilet to wash hands;
  6. Run back to the table;
  7. Talk;
  8. Play with her food;
  9. Sing;
  10. Talk;
  11. Sing some more;
  12. Take one bite;
  13. Repeat Steps 7-12 two dozen times.

Dinner is exhausting, to say the least.  It should come as no surprise, then, that the evening Alice realized she was complicit in the death of an innocent creature began thusly:

The Mama: Eat your turkey, Sweetie.

Alice: What? This is turkey? What’s that?

The Mama: Like the bird. Turkey.

Alice: I bet he isn’t happy about that.

The Mama: No, I don’t think he is, Alice.

Alice: Did you hunt it?

The Mama: No.

Alice: Why?

The Mama: Well, everyone does what they do best. It is most efficient that way. A farmer raised it.

Alice: Did they cut his head off?

The Mama: Yes.

Alice: Oh.

(extended silence)

The Dada: So, I’m doing a load of laundry! Lights! (The Mama and The Dada engage in a spirited discussion of the laundry. Blankets! Towels! It worked. Conversation officially changed.)

Versions of this exchange took place every time meat dared appear on the table. The Kidling’s comments ranged from, “What animal is this” to the sad-voiced  “What animal are we going to eat tonight” to the ubiquitous (audible sigh) I bet he isn’t very happy about that” to the horrifying and hilarious evening on which we had steak: “I feel bad about that. (very long pause) But it is yummy.”

I should add that we respect Alice’s autonomy, and never make her eat anything she doesn’t want to consume. Except broccoli.


*Whilst adding this hyperlink, I discovered that none other than the amazing Maira Kalman has recently illustrated Michael Pollan’s Food Rules: An Eater’s Manual. I am head over heels for Maira Kalman’s work, and own her charmingly illustrated edition of Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style. I should add that, in my fantasy world, Ms. Kalman illustrates the real book version of the book of alice. I even tweeted about it once. The Mama can dream, no?

greetings from Nanaland (or Papaville, as the case may be)

First of all, apologies. My lack of kidling-isms this week is due to my lack of The Kidling. She has spent the past few days in Nanaland, a place with sunshine, flowers, dessert, extra bedtime stories, field trips, constant attention, and puppies.

Fine, there’s really only one puppy. Whatever.

Alas, just when I was starting to seriously lament the lack of silliness in my life, I chatted with The Nana on the phone. She relayed a few stories that are classic Alice. The first was at dinner time. Alice was starving and cleared her plate of tilapia, fresh green beans, cottage cheese, and who knows what else. Apparently we don’t feed her enough at home. The Nana commented on her appetite, assuming that The Kidling must have just been delighted with the offerings. Nope.

Regarding those fresh green beans, Alice told The Nana, “I thought they were yucky, but sometimes I eat yucky things because I know they’re good for me.” 

That’s my girl.

Now, The Papa and The Nana have had The Kidling for several nights, so you can bet there is another story where that one came from. As you know, dear readers, The Kidling is working on becoming a reader herself. She sounds out everything (yes, everything) and loves to talk about letters and sounds. As they all discussed phonics, Alice told her grandparents, “I say ‘sink,’ but I don’t mean like in water. I mean I use my brain. … It’s hard to make that sound without my front tooth!”

Indeed it is. And guess what? We get my toothless, sinking, health food eater back tonight. Whew!