What a day Matthew and I had. We played the state game, went to Walmart to buy umbrellas (more on this later), and to Wednesday Lunch Bunch at the Shrewsbury Public Library. Then we went to the post office where Matthew the Mailman got to put the mail in the big blue bin. After we picked Aliya up, we all went to the park to see the Scarecrows made out of recycled goods! Once home, Aliya started her homework and I made Matthew his own that matched hers. Aliya learned about the food pyramid today at school and her homework was to draw healthy choices and write a few sentences. I drew a plate for Matt and he went to work. He drew green beans and asked me to help him draw strawberries and melon. It was a success and all were happy. UNTIL dinner that is. Please take note that I have been charged with the task of providing more food options to these children, instead of the usual chicken nuggets, pasta, and sandwiches. So, needless to say, 4 o'clock comes with some anxiety! I decided to make breakfast for dinner with cheesy scrambled eggs, toast, and fresh fruit salad. Sounds yummy huh? NOT TO MATTHEW!! He took a stand against scrambled eggs IMMEDIATELY! If he said it once, he said it 100 times, no kidding. This is how the first 20 minutes played out.
The Boy: I don't want scrambled eggs. I'm not eating scrambled eggs!
The Nanny: Matthew, have you tried scrambled eggs before?
The Boy: No and I don't like them.
The Nanny: How do you know if you haven't tried them?
The Boy: I don't want scrambled eggs. I'm not eating scrambled eggs! (5 times over)
At this point, I had decided on scrambled eggs and I was in the process of making them. So, he pulled out the big guns! He marched his little 3 (almost 4) year old self right down stairs and enlisted his father in the fight against scrambled eggs!! I heard him telling his father the same thing he had just told me (5 times over as well). I didn't hear anything from Dad so I went downstairs to rectify the situation, you know, take care of the boy because that is what they pay me to do, but he had worn his father down. He and his dad were headed up.
Dad says the boy has to at least try two bites of cheesy scrambled eggs. That is all I was asking for!! If he doesn't like them after that, he doesn't have to eat them.
To make an already long story short, the boy eats his negotiated 2 bites, declares he doesn't like them (SURPRISE, SURPRISE!) and then tries to negotiate eating only parts of the fruit salad. Now, I know he likes all of the fruit in the salad because I cut the other halves of the fruit up for him earlier this week and he gobbled them right up. Also, remember he did just draw these fruit in his homework?! I know what hes doing and I let him know that this is non-negotiable, he must eat them all to help him grow healthy and strong. He comes out with, "I already run fast!"
I walk away. Dad says he needs a time out and puts him in the time out chair. He holds out for about 20 minutes there - his choice. After that, he relocates back to the table where he pushes the plate away and sits for at least 10 minutes with his chin rested on his hands - pouting.
Then, a light bulb goes off and I remember one more chip I have! I remembered the chocolate chip muffin we had saved for dessert. Hey- I am not above negotiating, picking my battles...OK all out bribing! I tell Matthew that Aliya is having dessert now and if he wants some he needs to eat ALL his fruit within the next 5 minutes. Suddenly, his whole demeanor changes. Matthew is no longer full and likes all of the fruit in front of him!! He gobbles it up quickly and is ready for dessert.
We high five and then Aliya and I give him a round of applause! I tell him how proud I am of him for making a good choice and how glad I am that he ate the fruit to help him stay healthy. He is back to normal and wants to tell his parents he ate all his dinner!