We all know how frustrating it can be to watch your kids push their veggies around their plates and not eat them.
Well one of our regular contributors, New Mom, has created a lovely new blog to inspire parents to help their kids eat healthier by making it fun and beautiful. She calls the blog Kids Eating Art (www.kidseatingart.com) and each day she posts the artwork she creates from fruits and veggies.
She started out just posting the photos on Facebook, but with encouragement from her friends she created a blog to share with the world. (You guys may remember that New Mom and I went to high school together.)
I am amazed by the details she replicates and how the objects really look like what they are supposed to be. My favorites are the Hot Cocoa, Owl and Bunny. (The Hot Cocoa is very colorful!) Be sure to click on the link to see all the photos. She usually adds more each day.
New Mom uses step-by-step photos to show how she builds and layers each “painting.” It’s easy to follow even for the un-art inclined – like me! Also you can send New Mom your salad art for her to post on the blog as well.
New Mom writes on the blog about her philosophy on food for her two girls:
“… we didn’t want our kids to grow up with any food issues, and we REALLY didn’t want picky eaters on our hands….so when I was pregnant with our first, I started my research. And everything I found pointed me to the ‘chill-out’ method of raising non-picky eaters. (I named it the chill-out method, that’s not really official!) What this means: We don’t make our kids clean their plates. We just present them with healthy food and let them choose what they eat. In fact, there was a quote from a handout we received from our doctor, published by the local children’s hospital, that basically said “It is the parents’ responsibility to provide good, healthy food for the children. And it is the children’s responsibility to eat it.” (I’m paraphrasing) There have been nights when my husband and I have repeated that over and over to ourselves and each other, while our girls didn’t eat. It helped to remind ourselves that forcing them to eat is counterproductive.”
“Another thing we are concerned about is the issue many young girls face when it comes to food–eating disorders. Now you may think that 3 and 1 are too young to be concerned with that, but right now, it’s a matter of properly training ourselves to be good role models, to model healthy attitudes toward food, and to emphasize healthy eating rather than dieting. Once you realize how much kids listen to things you say but also watch what you do, it will make you examine yourself more. I sometimes ask myself, ‘do I want our daughters to think this way about herself? About food?’ And if the answer is ‘no’, then I know that I need to work on better modeling a proper attitude.”
“OK, so what does all of this have to do with Salad Art? I’m not completely sure (see, I told you this was a work in progress!) All I really know at this point is that we want our daughters to be healthy eaters. To be adventurous eaters and not picky eaters. To enjoy food, but not to be obsessed with it. And I suppose that my Salad Arts fit, because they smile when they see veggies and fruits. They laugh because they are eating a cat’s whiskers. Or a boat’s sail. And if they grow up to be imaginative and fun-loving, then all the better.”
So I wanted to share her food creations and her blog with you so hopefully it will inspire you to have some fun with your kids’ veggies too.
What do you think: Do you like New Mom’s creations? Do you think you could do it? Would it help your kids eat more veggies? What do you want to see her make next? (I wonder if she’ll take requests!)
- By Theresa Walsh Giarrusso, Momania at ajc.com