Tag Archives: feeding kids

Introducing: The Comfort Food Podcast!

Big news, friends! I’ve launched a new podcast, with my best friend (and fellow food-obsessive) Amy Palanjian of the wildly popular blog Yummy Toddler Food.

Comfort Food is about the joys (and meltdowns!) of feeding our families and ourselves. It’s about dealing with picky eaters. It’s about fighting back against diet culture. It’s about food — and that means it’s also about feminism, families and life.

You can listen to our first three episodes right now! Then stay tuned, because we’ll be dropping a new episode every week. So if  you’re already a podcast listener and you don’t want to miss an episode, just subscribe (for free!) in iTunesStitcherGoogle PlayTuneIn Radio, or wherever else you get your podcasts. If you’re new to podcasts, don’t worry. All of the episode links, with more details and links and photos, can be found through our show notes. And we’ll tell you everything you need to know to start listening.

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We Ate Ice Cream for Dinner Last Night

It was one of those Wednesdays. My older daughter had a doctor’s appointment right after school and then we were racing to sneak in a haircut before dinner. The baby was along for the ride; my husband was commuting back from the city. As we left the hair salon, the baby started wailing and my 4-year-old started whining and I realized it was after 5 pm and I had made no plans to feed them.

So I drove to the ice cream store.

And this was dinner: A scoop of mint chip for me. A scoop of chocolate with rainbow sprinkles for the preschooler. A half scoop of vanilla for the 8 month old. We sat on the front porch of our town’s beloved ice cream spot and watched tug boats gliding along the Hudson River. Hands and faces were sticky. Tummies were full. I’m not sure why they’re so somber that picture, because they were, in fact, so happy.

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On Lunchboxes.

There’s a story making the rounds right now about a mom in Australia who packed a slice of chocolate cake in her three-year-old’s lunch — and received a firm note back from the teacher: “Please choose healthier options for Kindy.” And while this particular incident is news, the phenomenon is not. Teachers grading lunchboxes make the rounds about once every year or two and that’s probably because it happens way more often than that. See this 2015 story from the Today Show about the Colorado mom who packed Oreos and received a note in response detailing a rather arbitrary set of school food rules. “All children are required to have a fruit, a vegetable, and a healthy snack from home, along with a milk.” Okay, fair enough. But there’s also this: ”If they have potatoes, the child will also need bread to go along with it.” What?

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Carbs: A Coda

And here’s a quick little coda to my last post on the comfort of carbohydrates. It’s International Week at my daughter’s preschool, which means they’ve been learning little bits about the cultures represented within the student body. And yesterday, we saw this in our daily classroom report (that’s Violet in the background; I’ve cropped her friend’s face to protect that family’s privacy):

Instead of presenting neophobic three-year-olds with lots of unfamiliar foods from different cuisines, these clever teachers used what may be our most universally beloved food to ease them and get them excited about trying new shapes, textures and even flavors in the form of tortillas, pita, naan, croissants, baguettes, bagels, etc. I also like that the lesson offered such a low pressure way to explore new foods, since the kids were empowered to choose for themselves and then talk freely about what they liked or disliked about each (fairly small) piece. Violet’s teacher reported that the bread shop was a smash hit; almost every kid tasted every type and many went back for seconds. And for those who might worry that this would only dig a kid in deeper on an all-carb kick, I was interested to note that at dinner last night, Violet went straight for her chicken and ignored our bread plate entirely. Self-regulation for the win!

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  • COMING SOON

    The Eating Insinct: Food Culture, Body Image, and Guilt in America by Virginia Sole Smith

    Pre-order now!