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Why Do I Bother To Buy Food?
by Cc Brackman
CC Brackman is a former staff reporter for The Brazil Times. Now working as a freelance writer/reporter, she has written for WiseGEEK, Demand Studios and The Poor Chef, a health and wellness magazine.

Kids don't discriminate; they'll eat anything as long as you don't try to force them. The key is to encourage them without them realizing you're feeding them something that's good for them. In other words, you have to trick them.

For the longest time, I had my sons convinced that lima beans were magic bean seeds. Cauliflower was albino broccoli and spinach was lettuce cooked in sugar water. If you say something with enough conviction in your voice and a straight face, children will believe anything you say.

My kids love venison so we eat it, a lot. We've had venison pork chops, venison chicken breasts, and venison bacon. As long as I say its venison, they'll eat it. This worked really well until my oldest realized that venison was dark meat and all the other stuff I was cooking had white meat.

It all worked out in the end, though. Since their only other choice was to become vegetarians, they chose to continue eating whatever I cooked.

Of course, they also ate other things.

My oldest son had this habit as a small child of eating any dead bugs he'd find on the floor along the wall. I don't think he really liked the taste, but they sure made a cool crunching noise when he chewed on them.

I found out about this gross little habit of his quite by accident. I entered his room one day, right after he'd made a delicious discovery. He turned around and smiled at me and I could see little legs sticking out from the corner of his mouth. Grasshopper. He had found and eaten an old, dead grasshopper. I couldn't see my face, but I know I was green.

How could someone I loved that much totally gross me out? We had our first lecture that day, this three-year-old and me. Only food, drink and toothbrushes go in our mouths.

The hardest part of teaching good eating habits is catching them in the act of eating stuff you don't want them to. Kids are downright sneaky when they want to be. My youngest son can rip a piece of ABC(Already Been Chewed) gum from under a public table and have it in his mouth before I even get seated.

Let's not forget the bazillion times that you have to remind them that boogers are not for eating and neither are scabs.

By the time they are old enough to sit at the table without a booster seat the list of what not to eat is pretty long.

You can't eat bugs, snot, glue, play-dough, paper, dog food, dog dookey, toilet paper, cars and balls of any color or crayons. Rabbit poops aren't chocolate chips and just because your brother dares you to eat something, you shouldn't.

Why do we worry so much about what goes in? I think it has something to do with having to clean up what comes out!

Published: Aug 26,2008 22:53
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