Post Pledge 3: Some Decisions

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Okay, so last week I was struggling with how to move forward after finishing our 100-day pledge. Should I still bring our own food to birthday party and other social outings? Is it okay to just sit down and eat a piece of dark chocolate? What about making cookies for no reason? Should I say yes or no when my kids ask me for something that was previously off limits? I know that anything in moderation is okay, but (to quote my husband) the slippery slope was probably what was scaring me the most. Not to mention we worked incredibly hard to master the art of eating real food and experienced improved palates as a result.

On the flip side one of my other concerns was that I would end up spending more time worrying about the food we were eating than actually enjoying it. I definitely don’t want that to happen either, and I certainly don’t want my kids to have a negative association when it comes to food. So when seeking the happy middle where does one end up? I do have to say that all of the comments from blog readers on my “struggle“ post were very helpful in all of this. Thanks to those words of wisdom and some other deep thoughts, here are some very general guidelines to help us move forward:

  • When we are at home we are pretty much going to stick to our 100-day pledge rules except for special occasions like birthdays, holidays, and other celebrations.
  • When we are at a friend’s house or other social outing with friends/family we will eat whatever is available and not let ourselves worry about it.
  • When we are out to eat at restaurants we will try to order as much real food as possible, but we will no longer be talking to anyone kitchen staff or turning away the basket of bread!
  • I will let my girls eat treats at school for birthday and other holiday celebrations. Other than that I will try to keep things to a minimum if possible (for example they already give my 3-year-old a sticker instead of candy at the end of ballet class every week).

I am not saying these are hard and fast “rules” that we will follow 100% of the time because again moderation is key (three birthday celebrations in one day? I don’t think so). We also reserve the right to break some extra rules especially when we are out-of-town or having an unusually busy week. After our strict 100-day pledge we are very much warming up to the idea (and even beginning to embrace) the new freedom of flexibility!

So we dove right into our new “guidelines” by letting our 5-year-old eat what was served at a Chuck E. Cheese birthday party last weekend. I will say that I did give her some options before she went though. I asked if she wanted to eat the pizza at the party or have me pack her a healthier pizza instead. She made it clear that she wanted to eat the pizza AND the cupcake at the party. I said okay! I wasn’t there to see it, but from what I heard she scarfed down the pizza and cupcake (topped with neon pink icing) in record time. Although I can’t say I would have agreed, my daughter told me it tasted even better than she thought it would. I managed to be at peace with her happiness, but the weird thing is…(sorry for being a little graphic) about 24-hours later her poop was pink. Yep, pink. I couldn’t help but notice this very unexpected and unusual tint. What is up with that? Has anyone else ever seen an outcome (literally) such as this after lots of food coloring? Or did our recent “cleanse” have something to do with it?  I was perplexed.

There is one last non-real food event that I must mention. This one hasn’t actually happened yet. It all started last week when my 5-year-old’s teacher called from school to let me know that Sydney had accidentally dropped her lunch all over the floor…before eating any of it of course. The teacher offered to take her through the lunch line to get something else and my daughter refused wholeheartedly. I suddenly felt the guilt. Have I scared her away from making her own food choices or is the lunch line just a daunting task for a newbie kindergartner?

I always assumed my child would never buy lunch, and that instead I would always pack some sort of healthy real food ensemble for her. But never did it occur to me that some sort of accident like this could happen! I rushed some back-up food over to the school, but as hard-core as I am about eating real food I will be the first to tell you I’m not running food over there every time something like this happens. So I put some money in her lunch account, and this Friday my daughter will be buying and eating lunch from the school cafeteria (yikes).  This practice run will hopefully help her feel more prepared and more confident to handle things on her own if there is ever another incident. I am a little concerned she might like buying her lunch a little too much and possibly ask me if she can do it more often or even worse start purposely dropping her lunch on the floor. Please wish us luck with that one!

There will be some more exciting things coming up soon so stay tuned!

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40 comments to Post Pledge 3: Some Decisions

  • nancy

    Lisa loved the story and what I’ve read so far on your blog putting a bookmark in so I can come back. So many great ideas. My kids are practically grown and out the door, last one home is 15. He’s been more daring of late. I like the Chobani greek yogurt over ones like yoplait (been scared to try making it homemade but I will soon) and he finally tried it and now he likes it better than the yoplait type too. Go figure, now he usually eats it all sometimes before I even get one. @ Jennifer, so nice to hear others have a rule similiar to my mom’s and one I use too. Basically, “you have to try everything on your plate even the stuff you don’t like” All my kids do not like brussel sprouts but I’ve always put a half of one on their plate to try. I’ve told them to try new stuff and keep trying the old stuff you never know when your tastebuds will change. I was 25 before I fell in love with sweet potatoes.

  • Beth

    We have had our experiences with food coloring and BMs too. In fact, telling my MIL what happened after she gave my then 3 year old son a cupcake with 6 inches of neon frosting was the only way to convince her to respect our decisions regarding sugary sweets (she still buys candies and pastries I would prefer to avoid, but at least the crazy frosting is gone!)
    In regards to natural fruits and veggies coloring, my daughter, 21 mos, LOVES blueberries. And the day after a blueberry binge, we can expect to see a purplish tinge in her BMs. Obviously, not as weird or unnatural as neon food coloring, but it can happen!
    Thanks for your blog

  • Jennifer

    Colorful fruits and veggies are NATURAL, with those nutrients getting absorbed in one’s system. Food coloring is all chemicals- so the body’s flushing them out. Ughhhhhhhhhh! :)

  • Cortney

    I can say…my daughter eats cherry tomatoes like nobody’s business, and her poop is FREQUENTLY red. Also, when she eats bananas, her poop in kinda “sandy”, I guess from the little seeds in them. Thankfully she’s not really into sweets–the kid’s next thing to vegetarian! Her typical dinner is a handful of tomatoes, some kind of chip (my only ugh…she loves Pringles. Ugh. Sometimes I can get her to do pretzels, but ONLY if I’m eating them too. lol I think she just wants to try to eat more of them than me!) and either chocolate-covered raisins or dried cranberries. Sometimes a banana instead of those chips, if I’m lucky. She also LOVES chocolate milk, and as a kid who refused to drink ANY milk, I’m okay with that. Yes, it’s more sugar than she needs, but that’s not a battle I’m going to pick. But yes, you can occasionally get colored poop from veggies!

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  • Colleen F

    My family has been eating very healthy for about 5 years now, but I really want to do the pledge and do even better! I spent e last few days reading all posts of your 100 days – what an inspiration! I have to comment on your “poop” comment. We took our kids for ice cream at a local shop, not because of good ingredients, but to support a local business. My husband and I were completely grossed out when our then 3year old chose neon blue ice cream. What could possibly be in it to make that color? Obviously nothing remotely natural. Anyway, he loved it. The next day his very regular little body had the biggest neon blue poop. It actually scared us! Although we had free coupons to go back, we never did. Just gross.

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