What will my Toddler eat? You tell me!

I have found myself completely confounded by this tiny person:

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Real men wear their girlfriend’s hats

I know, I know – How can someone that adorable EVER cause any problems? – you might ask. Well probably most of you would know the answer to that one. Toddlerhood is wack-o man. Some days all is totally normal and fine and others it is like what alternate universe did I fall into here?

I took Jack with me to start that project last week because it was in a town where we had family and they wanted to watch him while I worked. Looking back, on that 5 hour drive north, just over a week ago today, I was a mom who knew her toddler’s eating habits. I knew if there was an ear of corn to be eaten in a 20 food radius, that belonged solely to Jack. I knew he preferred mac-n-cheese to about anything else. Chicken nuggets were a close second. Most of the time he will eat some of his stirfry. He will eat edamame like it is his job and he will eat green beans as if they were edamame and carefully extract the tiny beans inside, leaving the shell….you get the idea.

Little did I know that in the span of 3 days I would go from answering ‘yeah Jack will eat that’ when questioned to ‘I honestly have no idea, let’s try’.

Granted we were traveling….that obviously affects everyone differently. We were with less-known relatives (he sees them about once every 3 months or so and on all major holidays, but he is 2….or 3 according to him…you determine who’s right there)…so yeah basically I get it, but I don’t at the same time.

We went out to dinner after we arrived and he ate 2 grapes, no chicken and no spaghetti or “noogles” as he calls them…..okay he has been eating snacks in the car for the past 2 hours. The next morning we had eggs and pancakes for breakfast and he ate his pancakes like a champ! and pushed his eggs around the plate.

I got back from work and my aunt asked if he would eat pizza for dinner? um of course he will…..no, no he will not. he will eat half a granola bar from his diaper bag and two applesauces and then he will fall asleep at 6pm and not wake up until tomorrow. They’d skipped nap and gave him cheese crackers for lunch…..which seemed fun at the time, but was not fun for the hour he woke up from 9:30-10:30 when he was groggy and crying.

Pancakes for breakfast the next day….winner again. I went off to work and came back ready to hit the road. For some context, this is when Colorado was being dumped on (I was up in WY)….rain-wise. There was crazy flooding and you probably know the rest. We’d been watching it all morning, checking the road reports. The main highway that runs from WY to CO was closed and that left one highway option for me once I got to Cheyenne. I was ready to hit the road….but still had to get the work collected that morning. So as soon as I got back I was ready to load up and shove off. But my aunt wanted to feed us. Will Jack eat grilled cheese and corn on the cobb? and I said yes with certainty!…..turns out no,….no he won’t. He will eat two bites of grilled cheese and then run off to play with his train.

Despite them wanting us to stay and wait out the flooding, I wanted to get as close to home as possible. Being 5 hours away wasn’t sitting well for me. It looked as though we could at least get to Greeley, our hometown and where my in-laws live. I’d be an hour from home and Jack would be comfortable there (and maybe eat some food).

Off we went. I had a co-worker on the road ahead of us, so we were able to check in with each other to see how the roads were and if there was news about the highways closing/opening. We made it to Cheyenne and CDOT was indicating that all roads into Colorado were closed. Fuck I know no one in Cheyenne….I have to try the other one anyway. I arrived to a line of cars and signs saying ‘checking ids, only CO residents’. Man, did that feel strange – being carded to cross a state line.

I thought things were going to be peachy and that maybe just maybe we would get home that night (more on why that was important in another post). We made it into Greeley/Evans and quickly realized that wasn’t going to happen. The Big Thompson was….well BIG. They’d evacuated the areas of Evans and even though the water wasn’t over the bridge in Evans, it was really high. I wondered if maybe, with my cunning local knowledge, I could find a higher bridge that they had left open somewhere…..nope. Apparently emergency services is on top of it and when they close roads over a river, they do it thoroughly.

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This is kind of hard to see, but the “bridge normally over the tiny river” is right in the middle, it was flooded to about 100 feet on the road side and for what looked like over 1/4 mile on the other side. Crazy.

So I gave in and decided that while there was the option of driving several hours East to give those bridges a try, it was a shot in the dark. We went to my in-laws and would try again the next day.

My MIL was making spaghetti for dinner and while four days ago I could answer the will Jack eat spaghetti? question, now I could not. I don’t know? I admitted with defeat He has been eating weird the past few days. Let’s give it a try.

She offered to make him something else, but I honestly couldn’t tell her what he would eat. Having her make something special, even mac-n-cheese, might turn out to be wishful thinking and then she’d have gone through the trouble. So we tried the spaghetti….no dice. Instead he ate grapes and goldfish and cookies for dinner.

For breakfast the next morning….again just grapes. Le sigh….

We made it back home and whilst I hoped Jack’s eating weirdness was just circumstantial, it seems in fact he has had a big shift in eating habits. Not sure if he is fasting or what, but even his go-to foods are only getting a few bites before he is off to do other things.

So if you ask me “what will Jack eat?”….I seriously can’t tell you besides suckers and gummy bears…..do they have suckers and gummy bears infused with protein, calcium and vitamins? I need those.

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4 thoughts on “What will my Toddler eat? You tell me!

  1. Eating habits are SO. MUCH. FUN. (said through clenched teeth) aren’t they?? Oh, and yes, they do have gummy bears and lollipops with vitamins in them! God bless that!

    It’s my understanding that when toddlers are NOT going through a growing spurt they tend to eat less. So it’s quite likely that he just doesn’t need the same nutrition right now. I’ve noticed that travel can spark a period like this too though, and I thought it was coincidental but maybe not?

    I wish I had advice to give you. All I have to offer is he’ll get over it. (Isn’t the the most annoying thing to hear, ever??) Good luck chica!

  2. Dude, I swear by the Lil’Critters Gummy Vites and Calcium bears I buy in bulk at Costco. My pickiest eater (the oldest of three) refuses the sugar-covered calcium ones. It’s annoying, but supposedly they outgrow it at some point. Good luck!

  3. I mixed spinach, apples, and eggs together the other day. Cheeks didn’t eat it. I wasn’t surprised. But those protein and nutrient filled suckers sound like a brilliant plan to me! 😉

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