Apr 13, 2012

Meal Monotony and Why I Love It

Mommy confession: I feed my children the same things every day for breakfast and lunch.  Every morning, my girls eat a bowl of Multi-grain or plain Cheerios and milk.  Every afternoon, they eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich with pretzels and fruit.  Occasionally, as in once every two weeks or so, I pull out English muffins or yogurt for breakfast, or the girls will eat leftover whole wheat spaghetti with butter and Parmesan cheese for lunch.  Meal monotony has saved me time, money, and headache.

It didn't used to be that way.  As a new mom,  I read other blogs and talked to others about what they did at meal time. I thought up (what I thought were) exciting, nutritious breakfast and lunch combinations.  I tried doing leftovers for lunch. Either way, those meals were greeted with whining--a habit we try not to welcome in our home. I was frustrated.   I attempted the idea of offering a choice at breakfast or lunch to alleviate conflict.  It wasn't working.

Finally, out of desperation, I just started giving them one option.  The same option. Every day.  I didn't argue.  I just stated, "This is what's for lunch." Within a few days, the meal time dilemma was solved.  There was no question in the girls' minds what we would be eating, and as a result, they never whined about not having such or thus.  We have followed this routine for nearly 6 months, and to my amazement, they never complain, and they actually look forward to cereal and PBJ sandwiches.

Let me just say, this is what works for us.  I know full well that what works for us may not fit for your family.  But maybe if you're frustrated like I was, this is the solution.  As a result of this change, I never sit there in a half-sleep state wondering what to fix for breakfast.  The shopping list is simpler because I know what I need and when to buy it.  I don't debate with the girls or cajole them to "try it, you'll like it."  My girls are content with what I offer them.  On the other hand, dinner time is our variety show, and provides the opportunity to try new flavors and textures and step outside our comfort zone.  Cereal and sandwiches are simple and quick to fix.  Using coupons with sales, I have yet to pay over $1 per box of cereal, and I'm still using up my horde of free peanut butter from last year, so it's cheap.  And I will not allow myself to feel bad when I see what creative solutions others may have found, because this is our family and our solution. Can I hear an AMEN?

6 lovely comments:

Phyllis Blickensderfer said... Best Blogger Tips

Yes, ma'am - AMEN!! Beloved Husband and I do the same weekday breakfast, and sometimes carry that over to the weekend. He has his cereal, I have mine. Lunch (if we're not out for an appointment) is leftovers or sandwiches (and he loves bologna, I'm pressed ham or scrambled eggs.) See? This can work for a long time!

Anonymous said... Best Blogger Tips

Yes, I can see where that would work for the little ones. But what about you? Do you have PBJ and cereal along with the girls, or do you fix something else for yourself?
Now I know to come to your house for lunch if I feel like PBJ! :)

content2be said... Best Blogger Tips

Well, I go on kicks that last a few weeks/months. For a while, it was oatmeal every morning. Now I eat an apple with peanut butter and a hard-boiled egg. For lunch, I usually have tuna salad and carrot sticks, or I have a gigantic salad. So...pretty monotonous. Ben has eaten PBJ sandwiches in his lunch for nearly 7 years, and that's just the way he likes it. So maybe it just runs in the family. :)

Debbie said... Best Blogger Tips

You are your daddy's girl is all I can say!

Melissa H said... Best Blogger Tips

April! My kids (and Steve) eat almost the exact same thing (cereal and PB&J) for breakfast and lunch! I hear you on the whole whining thing! It makes things SOOOO much easier.

content2be said... Best Blogger Tips

Ha! That's great. Great minds... It is all around the best thing I've done to ease home operations in a long time!