Paul and I are emerging from the world of :
Paul, as loyal readers may recall from my previous post, had a stomach bug. He recovered, just in time for me to get it on day two. So, the boys played in squalor as we creaked and moaned from the bathroom to the bedroom to the couch. Horrible.
While it was probably a twenty-four hour bug, we're choosing to blame the homemade chicken nuggets. The recipe for these nuggets came from one of those cookbooks designed for children. The recipe involved slicing, dicing, food processing, crumbling, frying, and shaping the nuggets into Christmas trees and snowmen. This fine recipe took twice as long, required every pot in the house and possibly gave us food poisoning. Additionally, after all this work, Owen proclaimed, "I don't like that. I want peanut butter toast."
That's what you get for channeling Martha.
I try not to get too uptight about Owen's eating habits. He eats more cold hot dogs than any person should, but we always make him eat vegetables first. Of course, he prefers them to be cold. And that peanut butter toast? He prefers it cold, too. As in peanut butter on bread. Not toasted. But, it must be called toast or else it is no damn good. As Owen approaches three, he is becoming a delightful mix of Jack Nicholson's OCD character from As Good as it Gets and Mussolini.
For Christmas, my mom gave us a book alarmingly titled, Eat This! Not That! For Kids! Talk about a disturbing read. So many of the seemingly innocent items we put in our cart---yogurt, couscous, Kraft macaroni and cheese, juice, are actually loaded with sugar and calories which will ENDANGER YOUR CHILD'S HEALTH!
Case in point: we used to get Owen this juice called "Harvest Surprise," because it had vegetable juice mixed in with the fruit juice. Can't go wrong with that? Apparently, I should have just served him a glass of tequila. According to the book, it has 27 grams of sugar per serving. Paul's favorite cereals--Smart Start and GoLean Crunch also fall into the "Not That!" category. Even the chicken soft tacos from Chipotle are evil--25 grams of fat. I had thought that chicken=better than steak, but apparently not...
The one vindication I had from reading this depressing, if enlightening text, is that my eternal favorite, the black and white cookie from Starbucks is a far better choice, (an Eat This!) than most of the things on its menu. Since I lived on these through both pregnancies, I can feel a little better.
I guess it's all an illusion. We can attempt to protect our children and ourselves from hidden calories and secret sugars. We can make our own chicken nuggets and ban macaroni and cheese from our pantries. However, despite our best efforts, we still mess up, and stomach bugs still sneak into our house and kick everybody's ass. You've just gotta roll with it.
And, in case you were curious, Chili's Pepper-Pals' Country-Fried Chicken Crispers with Ranch Dressing and Homestyle Fries, coming in at 1,110 calories, 82 grams of fat, 1,980 mgs of sodium wins as The Worst Kids' Meal in America.
Lord help us.