I ditched the whole “breakfast” and “lunch” thing over a year ago. It’s overrated anyways. We are “grazers” and it works pretty fantastically for us. We eat small and light when we are hungry. Not because we just woke up or because it’s exactly noon. Certainly not when the kids are just bored and can’t find anything else to do but shove their faces full of food. And since we homeschool, its been even more of a lifesaver because I am no longer spending hours preparing, serving and cleaning up food all day long for five kids. Our time is better spent.
And then there is the factor of nutrition and are they getting enough and is it GOOD things for them. I’ve gotten pretty good at staying stocked up on healthy snacks. Truth be told, when all the junk isn’t even present in the home, the kids will eventually begin to choose the apple over the cookies. Because there just aren’t any cookies. And the apple begins to sound real delicious.
I’ve been utilizing a grocery delivery service once a week and it’s been so helpful! We get fresh fruit and veggies delivered to our doorstep every weekend so there are always healthy options available for the kids to grab. I’m strategic about choosing organic and natural as much as possible and trying out new food products that are quick and easy. Mostly, I choose things that any of the kids can grab out of the fridge or pantry themselves where there isn’t much preparation involved.
In the morning, I cut up a whole cantaloupe or a whole celery stalk and set it out on the counter (with some peanut butter) and just free range it all day. It’s sitting there, all nice and healthy, and if the kids are hungry, they are welcome to indulge in their nutritious snack. We encourage them to try new things because you never know what your taste buds will enjoy.
Each night at supper time, we all sit down to a family meal. I try to have a salad option often ready for a side dish and choose organic pastas and fresh roasted vegetables to fill up our plates. I’m not a master chef and actually really don’t even enjoy cooking that much, but am really working on using clean ingredients in our dinners. It’s been a bit of a transition for our kids because they are used to hearty and heavy meals and eating till their tummies ache. But we are really working on choosing fresh foods and eating balanced and necessary portions – not going beyond that.
I know that I can definitely get caught up engulfing too much food because… well, food is so freakin’ good! But when I put things into perspective and realize what my body actually needs to thrive and survive, I can make better choices to give my body what it actually needs. Not endless amounts of empty and harmful calories that just pack on the pounds.
And clearly, this looks different for kids. They are growing. But, I want to instill in them now the dangers of gluttony. Yes, I’m being a little sarcastically dramatic right now. But really, it’s easy to be greedy with our food intake so I’m teaching my kids about healthy foods and portions because nutrition is important. They are growing and I want to give them the best foot forward to grow in a healthy manner.
I enjoy a delicious trip to the ice cream store as much as anyone else, but we try to make those trips a little less often and “reward” ourselves in alternative, yet fun ways. I would love to know what your family’s eating habits look like. What fun experiences do you engage in instead of having it always revolve around food (because this was one of our biggest pitfalls at one point).
I love the beauty of sitting around a table and breaking bread together. It makes memories and builds togetherness. And I’m working on making those moments to be fueling both our emotions, our relationships and our bodies.