Works For Me Wednesday: Jelly Bean Promises

Yesterday, I wrote about how Sofi eats everything! Today, I’m changing the tune a little bit to “how in the world can I get Amelia to eat?”

The answer? Jelly bean promises.

Amelia has been the most difficult eater! She is picky, somewhat, like her daddy. But really it’s more that she just doesn’t like to eat much. She eats just enough to take the edge off and then it’s “I wanna go play!”  I know she’s tiny and her stomach is probably the size of a ping pong ball. But seriously, she’s so tiny she’s not even on the charts! I’m incredibly thankful that the stuff she does like to eat are healthy things. She loves her fruits and most vegetables, yogurt and cheese. Those are all good things. Meats on the other hand? Forget about it. So every meal time it has become a constant battle to get her to eat “enough.”

We’ve tried lots of things over the last year. Counting out our bites. That worked for a few days. Taking bites at the same time (we all take a bit of the same thing at the same time… kind of turning it into a game.) That worked for a few days. We tried just engaging her in conversation, thinking she’d just eat absentmindedly while talking. That did not work. At all. We’ve tried asking her to take bites in honor of family members, and we’ve tried telling her she can’t get down until she eats so many bites and on and on and on. Needless to say, I hate meal time.

However, I have found a new solution and so far it’s working.

Jelly bean promises.

For Valentine’s Day, my mom gave Amelia a ridiculously adorable plastic jar of these cherry flavored, heart shaped jelly beans. I say ridiculously adorable because my mom decorated it herself. The woman has talent!

So every night, at dinner (most nights anyway) I tell her if she eats x amount of bites, she may have one jelly bean heart. The promise of one, count them, one jelly bean has been sufficient in getting her to eat her dinner.

Is this bribery? Maybe. Is she eventually going to figure out the system and start negotiating with me on everything? Maybe. She’s still the child, however, and I’m still the parent so I’ll deal with that when we get there. But for now? It’s what’s working for me. 🙂

How do you get your children to eat?

This post is linked to Works for me Wednesday at We are That Family

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    • boom shock
    • March 23rd, 2011

    But she makes that one jelly bean “hoit” last a good 30 minutes.

    Negotiations should be fun. 😀

    • pam foster
    • March 23rd, 2011

    glad i could be a part of convincing her to eat. do i need to get another bag or two

      • boom shock
      • March 24th, 2011

      yes. I.. I mean she really loves jelly beans. :o)

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