What Brady Ate: Dinner Edition

In my last post on toddler lunches, I promised to share the one thing that instantly stopped Brady from throwing food on the floor. And it was…a booster seat!

Don't mind the dirty shoes on our kitchen table

Don’t mind the dirty shoes on our kitchen table

We moved him from his high chair to a booster seat at the kitchen table, and I kid you not, his behavior changed immediately. Now that he’s pulled up to the table, he no longer throws food on the floor. There must have been something appealing about throwing food overboard from the highchair, especially to a dog waiting below. No matter how much I tried to police the behavior, it happened constantly, to the point where I cut back on Charlie’s kibble to control his weight. 

A fellow mom was selling two of these booster seats (for $5 total! Thank you Facebook groups!), and I bought them with Brady’s ‘older’ toddler years in mind. Except we tried them out that day and haven’t gone back since. The straps beneath the seat secure him two different ways to the chair, and he’s buckled in with a three-point harness. I probably would’ve moved him months ago if I knew how secure he would be. 

Now, Brady gets a placemat and a “plate” (plastic tray) like everyone else, and it feels more like family dinner, if that makes sense. It’s so nice. I get to face the table for the first time in 13 months, as opposed to eating dinner half-facing his high chair. It’s a win for everyone. Except Charlie, poor guy. He’s back to his normal kibble portion because he gets so little food on the floor. 

Below is a sample of Brady’s dinner photos, from my 3-part What Brady Ate series. {Here’s breakfast and lunch if you missed them.} As a reminder, this isn’t necessarily what he ate, but what I served to him. I explain this more in the lunch post, with my “Four R” approach to food refusals. He consistently ignores the green beans, edamame and zucchini on his tray, but we keep serving the greens regardless.

Brady doesn’t have a big appetite at dinnertime, so the food he doesn’t eat goes back in with the leftovers, is eaten by me or hubby, or is tossed. He knows the sign language for “all done,” which has helped us communicate better around mealtimes. Sometimes he’s still eating when he makes that sign, so I ignore him. Other times he looks me dead in the eye with his “all done” sign, and I know he’s really done. The next stop after “all done” is smashing food around his placemat, swiping it to the floor, ripping off his bib or pulling our placemats to the floor (full of dishes, of course). He gives us fair warning before this step, though, so we can peacefully end mealtime and let him go play by himself while Scott and I finish our dinners.

Once he’s a little older, I’d like to learn how to encourage sitting/waiting politely at the table until everyone is all done. That’s a job for another day. What Brady Ate for Dinner: 9 dietitian-approved toddler dinners

Same pictures, with descriptions: 

What Brady Ate for Dinner: 9 balanced dinner ideas for toddlers

 

KER_Month_Badge_LargeIt’s still Kids Eat Right monthâ„¢! Are you familiar with all of the resources available to families, provided by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics? Check out kidseatright.org for healthy eating tips, recipes and resources for kids, teens and families.  

August 26, 2016

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