Friday, May 6, 2011

Dinnertime Redundancy

A couple friends of mine and I have an ongoing thread on facebook whingeing about all the things that are driving us mad about our's not to seek pity or to consol one another, but rather to top each other's kids' disgusting and miserable behavior to get each other laughing (now that I've spelt it out, it all seems very sinister!).  Well, for this one, I will share beyond our private thread:  dinner time. 

Since having kids, I've not shared in others' feelings of trepidation with new foods or understood how mealtime was difficult - in fact, we've been lucky with both our kids - they eat most things (sometimes need extra coaxing with veggies), and a lot, and we've never had to worry.  It's always been a quiet time of day - mouths full, chewing, swallowing, anywhere from 10-30 minutes of bliss...that is, until recently. 
Recently, Olive has to decided to quickly slip into her 'I'm an asshole outfit' right before dinner time (and it fits all too well I'm afraid!). 

First, it's up to the table, drink madly and wildly, milk seeping from the corners of her mouth (I let this go).  Then it's "Spoon mamma, inte fork!" (I always have both on the table in preparation, I give her a spoon).  "NEJ mamma, Olle's fork, inte spoon, hands!" (I don't let this go), "Fork or spoon Olive?".  Both utensils are now on the floor.  I pick them up, return them to her with no words (I'm usually too angry to calmly and patiently explain to her why this behavior is ridiculous, so I just hand them back to her).  One day she loves carrots, the next she hates them.  For, sometimes, 3 days in a row, she's crazy for rice and peas, then, on day four, rice and peas are a weapon to be thrown 'ping, ping' off her sister's head.  SERIOUSLY?!?!  And since the  weather's been nice and we spend most of our time outside, she NEVER wants to eat - it's a big drama every time I say the words, 'Dinner Time'.  "One more time slide?"  "Ok, Olive, 'one more time slide' and then dinner'".  As if.  She'll run in, jump up to the table, eat one bite, and then "Outside, play with kids?".  "Olive, you must eat more than one bite"...and these words just throw her over the edge! 

And what is worse?,  I have recently been told, that 3's are worse that 2' I'm determined to nip this behavior in the bud before we get to her 3rd birthday - but how??  I've read loads on discipline, behavior, positive reinforcement, forget it!  I have one determined kid.  I've thought of letting her starve...until she comes in begging to be fed, but I have to feed my youngest who, by 5pm, is getting ultra grumpy and hungry, so I can't keep an eye on Olive outside.  In with the masses I'm afraid.  And a few times, I've managed to feed Poppy outside while Olive plays, but then Olive claims that I'm starving her at precisely 7pm (coincidently, her bedtime might I add!)...and truthfully, I'm not interested in running a restaurant.    
In the end, I try telling myself, these shenanigans will be replaced by far worse shenanigans when the girls are in their teen years, which helps me not to kill the girls, but it doesn't make me any happier about the current situation. 

Until next time,

Grumpy Old Sarah.  

We're quickly approaching last frost in Stockholm (sort can't be sure until June), so get those seedlings started to enjoy your summer harvest!  Feel free to check out your climate zone above.  A funny blog entry I came across while searching for the last frost, read, "Dear Swedenyou suck. Your spring is awful, your wine is expensive."  I like it, especially the bit about the wine!               


  1. I'm afraid Sarah, you cannot 'nip' the trying 3's in the bud. It's a stage that's bound to happen. I just have a bit of advice: Wear a full suit of armor. We're talking physically, mentally and emotionally. Oh and a floatation device too. I'm drowning over here in more than just the rain. HAPPY FRIDAY!

  2. The bit about the wine is so very true, especially after spending a week in Spain! =)

    Good luck with the kids, it's a though age.
    I was a terrible girl at the dinner table. Involentarily, but still. Had difficulties holding down the food, and couldn't do anything about it, but it led to a year of at-the-table-traumas for the parents. The doctor recomended that the food be taken away from the table if I refused it. Eventually, I would be to hungry to deny it. Just give the kid water to hydrate, they said. According to my mother, by the third or forth day, I very politely declined the food and asked for "just water" instead :P My mom had a fit.

    Moral: don't starve the kid, it'll drive you insane instead.

  3. autumn, thanks for the tips - by dinnertime, olive's tired, and lesson learned, compounded with starvation, she turns into a demon. actually, i was sticking to time outs for a couple days, and things have ironed out some...fingers crossed we're heading in the right direction!