Thursday, August 7, 2008

A Lesson Learned (I Hope).. Warning...lots of prose, but a good story

Several years ago, I saw a Dateline (or something like that) story about people making things like macaroni and cheese for their kids for breakfast. I really didn't think much about it. Each family has their own traditions and whatever works its fine for them, I figured.

Then I became a mom. I did all the traditional feeding as our boys grew up.

We discovered that Mr. Picky Eater (Noah) doesn't really like any breakfast foods. Last year before school, we had the nightmare of trying to get him to eat enough at 6:45 in the morning to control his behavior at school that was also fast enough to get him to school on time. Many of you will remember that we got a letter from the principal last year scolding us about chronic tardiness and how we were scarring our child for life since he was ten minutes late for school sometimes because of breakfast battles in the morning.

So, in light of yet another school year approaching, I came to the conclusion that I had to figure something out for breakfast for Noah that is both nutritionally sound, but much quicker and causing less complaining. My answer...

PB&J and yogurt with apple slices in the car.

It has worked wonders this summer.

Then comes the lunch dilemma...more PB&J or do I have to get even more creative?

Sometimes it's a mix.


After discovering last night that we were all out of bread, I made the boys breakfast PB&J on hot dog buns and figured we would go out for a fun lunch at my favorite restaurant (Has anyone else discovered Moe's Southwest Grill?)

As we were standing in line, the boys broke into a hitting match and then Aaron began his whining that we have been having issues with for the last few weeks. I decided there was no way I was going to have this behavior in a restaurant. Before even getting to the order area, I picked up Aaron (a little less than gently), grabbed (more gently than it sounds) Noah's hand and walked out to the car. As I was driving away, a man followed me out and gestured for me to open my window. I figured, "Great, some guy is going to scold me for how I just treated my kids." Instead, he said, "I just want to tell you that my kids are raised now, but I wish I had had the courage to do what you just did. " I said thank you and drove away. I felt better about how I had handled the situation.

But there was still a problem. I was shaking I was so hungry and we still had no bread in the house. But I didn't want to reward the boys with eating out. So, I hit a drive through for me only and the boys started some serious protesting. I asked them "Who was the one behaving in the line?" and they both had to admit that their behavior was awful.

Here's the weird thing that followed. I was determined to not discuss the matter any further until we returned home and I could find something for them to eat. But as I was driving, the two little boys who NEVER get along in the car became friends. They played together, talked softly together, gave each other high fives, and were generally delightful. Huh?

So I pulled into the driveway and they asked if they were going to get to eat today. I said I would see what I could find.

Guess what I found?

CEREAL. The cereal that they have always refused to eat for breakfast. Not only did they not complain, they were so thrilled to eat it, there was not a sound made and they both ate it all and drank all the milk. Noah even THANKED me for it when he was finished.

Not sure who learned what lessons in this whole thing. I guess I won't know until the next time we are waiting in line at Moe's.

5 comments: said...

I am so glad that you got a complement for what you did while at Moe's--

Natural Consequences!

Good Job Mom...
Maybe -- to morrow cereal will be for breakfast?

bethn said...

Good for you for walking out and getting yourself something to take home. I've done that a few times and they're behavior is usually better the next few times we go out. Of course I would probably have followed up with an "I'm so sorry you're still hungry, what are you going to do about it?" And then made them fix they're own lunch, which would probably have been cereal, because that's the only thing that Alex knows how to fix.

Hopefully now cereal will be an easier food. Dylan started really liking it when we put fruit on his cereal. Whatever berries are handy usually works. Good luck!

Courtney said...

Good job! I applaud you taking them out of there too. Too many times I have seen parents and think, you haven't ordered, take them and go, but they don't. My rules are, if we haven't ordered, we're leaving, if we have we're now getting it to go, etc.

As for the cereal, I hate breakfast foods too, in the morning. I can eat it any other time of day just not the morning. Not sure why, but I always ate a sandwich in the morning for breakfast. Breakfast foods upset my stomach in the morning. Maybe that is how Noah is.

Shannon @ Gabi's World said...

How great that someone gave you positive feedback. Do you think they ate the cereal without complaints because they were afraid they weren't going to eat? I applaud you for your wonderful mommy skills! I'll have to remember that for the next time as I am sure there will be the next time!

Debbie Yost said...

Way to go! It's so hard to make that kind of decision, especially when you are that hungry.

We had a Moes close to our house but it was in a bad location and closed. I liked it, but I prefer Chipotles.