Letting Go (in a good way)

Bonjour mes amies. I was planning on writing a long post about yesterday’s journey to the seaside, and I will, but I felt this was worth chronicling first.

Warning, hippy dippy potentially New Age-y shite incoming.

(Also swearing)

As many of my readers know, my kids are remarkably picky eaters. To the extent that I often wonder why they aren’t more skinny. In fact, whilst I think they are fine they certainly aren’t underweight.

You know that I’ve tried everything to get them to eat. To eat more, eat healthy(er), to eat variety.

It has, quite frankly, killed me. Both mentally and physically. There has been such an attempt made to:

But it has more often resulted in:

We all know about healthy eating. We know about food groups, vitamins, minerals, “5 a Day” but what do you do when, despite your best efforts, they just won’t?!?!?

Well, if you are me dear audience, you fret, and stress, cry, feel like a failure, and let it beat you down until it becomes (yet another) reason to push you back in your depression spiral/box.

But, the hus-creature loves me, and his kids, and hates to see us like this.

And he read a study on it. A study that showed that forcing picky eaters to eat outside of their comfort zone actually causes way more harm than good.

There was more to it of course, but it’s what it boiled down to.

That it is better that they are given what they will eat, rather than not.

So, that’s what I have been doing.

Peanut butter and jam sandwiches are now a daily meal staple. I sometimes vary it like the above, sometimes not.

And this is the result of careful theorising. I’m always left with a small amount of boxed macaroni and cheese after I make it for them.


Probably because I add the peas!!!


But it’s never enough for an additional two meals on its own.

Voila! Side dish. And yes, one child has broccoli (TT) and one child has cucumber (#1 Son) because of preferences. But I am working on that too. Do you see the tiny amount of each on the other’s plate? It works.

And no, they won’t accept home made macaroni and cheese sauce. I tried.

So yes, their diets are limited, bland and (to me) frankly appalling. But they are happy. They are eating. Meal times aren’t a battle anymore. No more tears.

They have a set “routine” of meals now:

  • Boxed mac ‘n cheese with added peas. At least it’s the organic kind.
  • PB&J
  • Hot dogs
  • Chicken nuggets (hidden veg brand whoo) with shaped potato of some kind.
  • Tinned spaghetti with meatballs – but that is significantly less successful than the boxed type.
  • Cheese quesadilla (again hidden veg) and that is #1 Son more than TT.

There might be more, but I forget.
Thankfully they do also eat:

  • Bananas
  • Apples
  • Ham
  • Cheese
  • Grapes
  • Cucumber (more #1 Son)
  • Broccoli (TT)
  • Carrots (TT)

I’ve excluded the “junk food” they will have when we go out but even that is predetermined and a small list.

  • Cheese pizza (more #1 Son than TT)
  • Cheeseburgers
  • Chicken tenders

Rarely they will accede to a pasta dish.

But gummy multivitamins are aces, and now I’ve embraced my reality? I’m much calmer.

TT also likes to stand on the scales after we do once a week, so that allows me to keep track of her weight, and she’s fine. She even gained a little last week.

So to any haters out there I say, walk a mile in my shoes before you judge. And until then:

Food decisions

Since mom has been staying we have been trying to expand the food repertoire of both children. On Monday we made home made pizza.

Yes on these pizzas were:

  • Tomato paste
  • Taco cheese
  • Ham
  • Pepperoni
  • Peas
  • And on TT’s only – mushrooms

He tried everything before putting it on the pizza. Everything got the thumbs up.

Then once cooked? Nope. Nothing. Nada. Outright refusal. We then had to persuade him to eat 3/4 of it based on the fact that he had made it himself.

I’ve reached the end of my tether with #1 Son now. Since before he turned two he’s been beyond ridiculously picky about food. It’s been four years.

His sister (who is two) was, I thought, just as picky. But no. She’s just been copying him. I cannot deal anymore.

So we’ve decided that we cannot simply cater to the lowest common denominator anymore, as she is suffering for it.

I’ve had a rule in place for at least the last year, that if you just try the thing on your plate, and you cannot eat it, I will make toast to replace it BUT YOU HAVE TO TRY.

So last night he went to bed both early AND hungry, because he refused to try potage. It was basically just highly blended down slow cooked beef stew with pasta. We had made it into a sauce dammit.

He just had to TRY IT. And he refused. While his sister wolfed it down. Followed by a dessert of oven baked banana, with a topping of natural yoghurt and a shall amount of melted (Hershey) chocolate. No, he didn’t get any.

I’m at the end of my rope. It’s not purely sensory as he eats things of various consistencies.

I also feel guilt because he’s been recently complaining that meals are “boring” but what am I supposed to do?

This morning we had a breakfast treat of chocolate cherry pie. He REFUSED. Then when finally argued into it claimed it made his tongue “minty”. It wasn’t a sour cherry pie, he’s eaten frosted cherry pop tarts and loved them.

He has particularly been grumping about breakfast being boring. But when I actually try and get him out of his rut? Meltdown.

He did have cereal first, so it’s not like he has gone to school hungry – that would be academic suicide – but lord.

I’m just exhausted from the daily battles. If it’s not food, it’s school, if it’s not school it’s some other perceived unfairness.

Can I have booze yet?

Day Two?

Or is it three? My counting might be off. This is certainly Day 3 in hospital. And I might just be going home today.

I’m a little apprehensive about that – but only because I’ve been liking having a motorised bed.

So, yesterday was spent in a fug of dozing, sipping liquids, attempting food, and having meds.

I’ve (at the nurse’s suggestion) cut back my Oxycodone to one 5mg tablet every four hours, which coupled with Tylenol every six is keeping me tolerably comfortable. And it means my prescription of Oxy will last a bit longer, giving me more time to heal.

As previously stated, this is not pain free. But it’s working. And I get to keep my support band thing thank the gods.

By my reckoning I am coming up to the 36 hours past where the belly tap should have worn off so this is a good sign.

The nurses here are amazing. No, really they are. I’m on the Mother and Baby ward and so I’m a little bit of an oddity and I’m being looked after so well.

Yesterday there was a really sweet High School student doing work shadowing, and she was so happy and bubbly. She was telling me all about how much she loves kids and the M&B ward. And we bonded over how we both swallow tablets


Sip of water, tablet in mouth, snap head back to swallow


Which apparently everyone in her family consider weird – so I’ve told her to say it’s the British way 😂🤣

So I think I was a bit of interest in her day. Overall I haven’t heard many babies, I think twice we’ve had “I am a new person and I am angry” levels of noise, and some of what sounded like hyped up older children visiting, but I’m in my own side room so I don’t disturb them and vice versa.

Food still isn’t interesting me much. I had a good breakfast yesterday:

I ate it all. I plan on re-ordering it today and hoping there’s tinned peaches today rather than the banana.

Lunch I think I was too optimistic – I ate my corn, half my chicken breast and my chocolate ice cream. Ignored my baked potato.

So for dinner I just went with chicken noodle soup and the ice cream. I’m keeping well hydrated with ice water and apple juice and nibbling on graham crackers so I’m not worried.

And it’s not like I couldn’t afford to lose a few pounds 😂🤣

TMI ALERT


I still haven’t pooped though. But considering how little I’m eating overall I’m not too worried yet.


I went for a short walk yesterday which is great progress. Getting up and down still hurts like anything, but moving around is beginning to become easier.

Okay, time to order food, as I actually feel hungry 🙀

School dinners

Are very different here.

Admittedly, it’s really difficult to get out of #1 Son what he’s had of a school day – he tends to forget.

But yesterday when I asked, he was adamant it was cereal. I shrugged it off because it was a half day and maybe he was overexcited. But today he told me he had French toast with syrup.

🤭🤔😯😦😧

So I thought I would investigate.

10 January 2018:

Now, you know what? This isn’t too bad. I mean, there’s yoghurt and cheese. I’m shocked that he apparently ate Cinnamon Toast Crunch, but hey this is good.

Now for today,

11 January 2018:

This? This I am less impressed with. Again it’s a one off, and most days he has a blasted peanut butter and (grape) jelly sandwich, so as a treat fine.

But it has definitely reminded me that I am in the country where pizza is considered a vegetable. I’m not taking his choice away from him though. He’s eating so much better at school than he was. The agency of choice there is vital.

I’m just going to mumble and grumble about options.

Christmas Day (2017)

Oh what a wonderful day we’ve had.

Santa visited:

#1 Son loves his Lego’s. Not so much his crayons and similar. Ah well.

TT was really happy with her hair bows and dinosaurs and other similar items.

We then had breakfast. TT ended up trying my scrambled eggs with smoked salmon, and she bloody loved it!!!

🙄🙄🙄🙄😂🤣😂🤣😂🤣😂

She cleared that plate! We also watched squirrels for a bit.

After breakfast we opened presents.

As previously mentioned, we left a lot of presents behind, but as a result the kids really enjoyed what they opened.

Lunch was awesome:

  • Pork with cranberry sauce and stuffing – yum! (Too much turkey previously consumed)
  • Macaroni cheese
  • Sliced potatoes – with herbs and other yummies
  • Crab cakes

TT stole a crab cake and scoffed it before we even noticed 😂🤣 and these were tasty cakes (wasabi mayo etc). Guess she’s taking after us more than her brother.

Then came dessert:

  • Chocolate peanut pie
  • Key lime pie

So. Good.

I don’t really like British traditional puddings of Christmas time – mince pies, Christmas pud & Christmas cake etc, so this was amazing for me.

TT stuck her hand in pie 🙄

We shouted.

The dog barked and barked a lot. She was defending TT against us 😂🤣

So she got cuddles and we were forgiven by her loyal Guard of Honour!

TT also had a whale of a time just generally:

Yep, that’s a stocking on each foot 😂🤣

Aunts Domi and Uncle Gary kindly took the kids out for a brief walk with Fluffy (the dog) and they had a really lovely time. The wagon was involved.

We just had a little rest as wow it’s tiring:

I have read a few chapters of one of my presents:

Which is bloody brilliant and hilarious and everyone should read it. Certainly every parent who worries that they aren’t “doing it right”

Because we are – it’s hard and we are doing okay 😘

We are now watching Ozark for an hour or so’s downtime then bed.

MERRY CHRISTMAS ONE AND ALL

🎅🏻💕🎅🏻💕🎅🏻💕🎅🏻💕🎅🏻💕🎅🏻💕🎅🏻💕🎅🏻💕

It’s Christmas (Eve)

And we are safely in Connecticut.

We left without incident at around 11:30.

Stopped for lunch at Mac Donald’s at around 13:00.

When given the choice of burger or chicken, TT declared “chicken burger” so this happened:

20 McNuggets was a mere 11c more than a 10 pack 🧐

I begin to see why there might be an obesity epidemic!

However as both children decided that didn’t want burgers – #1 Son because he saw the onion in the relish when I was removing Satan’s hell snack, the pickle, and TT because burger meant nuggets and chicken meant chips apparently! So those nuggets got demolished.

TT also decided that she wanted to sit in a high chair 🙀 she hasn’t used one in months. But she dragged it over to a booth and demanded “‘my chair” and was most happy:

#Stillmybaby

We safely arrived at around 15:30.

Got a phone call from the landlady shortly after arriving worried because she thought she could see smoke coming from our balcony.

It was her own vents! Crisis averted and I had mulled wine 😂🤣👍🏻

TT has declared every adult in the house not me or the hus-creature “cake people” because Domi gave her brioche.

She then made friends with the dog by accidentally feeding her said brioche. She was sitting on the floor with her hand out, and the last piece of brioche dangling from it, and the dog snaffled it 😂🤣

Kids are now safely in bed, with stockings hanging up in the guest house.

#1 Son didn’t really eat much for dinner – no surprise there, but TT ate risotto. It was seafood and mushroom risotto at that. We let her think it was pasta!

She ate scallops! And then went for mine!!!!!

Kept a whole one in her cheek like a little hamster for about 15 min 😂🤣😂

Relaxing now for a few hours before bed. We need to all be asleep so Santa can come

🎅🏻🎅🏻🎅🏻🎅🏻🎅🏻🎅🏻🎅🏻🎅🏻🎅🏻🎅🏻🎅🏻🎅🏻🎅🏻🎅🏻🎅🏻

The Thanksgiving Break

It’s taken me a little while to write this as I am missing everyone like crazy so it’s been tough to get things written down.

It was wonderful.

We stayed for three days in the company of family (on the hus-creature’s side) in their stunning guest apartment.

I got to know a number of my lovely in-laws a lot better, which was really something special.

We had the turkey. And the hus-creature and I most generously offered to save everyone from the dreaded dark meat.

Honestly we truly prefer it.

Let me see if I can list the culinary delights:

  • Turkey – of course
  • Mac and cheese (delicious)
  • Jalapeño cheddar corn bread (I need the recipe for this wonder)
  • Sweet potato bourbon maple mash (oh so good)
  • Green beans
  • Gravy
  • Cranberry sauce

Then there was pie. Oh so much pie.

  • Chocolate peanut butter
  • Apple
  • Pumpkin
  • There were two more but I forgot.

Apart from the apple briefly going missing, it was all delicious.

The kids were remarkably well behaved.

TT ate actual food:

#1 Son… did not. But I didn’t really expect that he would.

They had loads of fun outside in the gorgeous grounds of the main house.

TT made daddy take her for a ride in the cart:

There was much happy shouting of “wheee” and “MORE” 💕💗💕💗

#1 Son just ran about a LOT.

There was a brief moment of panic. Do you see the large body of water? There was a moment when Daddy could not find him. He had wandered in to tell me about his “club house” and wandered off again. He meant the guest apartment, which is where he had gone.

Without telling us that he was going there!!!

So no, he had not drowned himself, but we all panicked. He was most confused as to why.

On Friday, almost everyone else took the train to visit New York and do the tour of Lady Liberty.

We opted not to attempt to drag the offspring up 200+ steps. Granddad also decided not to go. So there was brief discussion on how to entertain said childer-beasts, and we decided to go to the nearby aquarium, and leave granddad to rest.

However he decided that he would like to join, which was lovely. However there wasn’t room for five people in our car, lovely though it is.

Therefore, rather than take a Lyft on a very busy day, I selflessly (honestly, see the halo 😇😇😇) opted to stay behind in the guesthouse with my knitting, tea and leftover turkey.

Totally generous of me wasn’t it? 😂🤣

They had a lot of fun:

Right until they found a soft play area. Whereupon #1 Son had a full on meltdown, including trying to escape from granddad, because other children wanted to play with the things he was building an invention out of.

How very dare they 🙄😐🙄😐

And so the trip was cut short and they all came home.

All in all it was a lovely visit with family with many moments of happy.

The drive home was much less eventful than the trek up, we managed it on a full ‘tank’.

However upon our return we discovered that when, in his haste, the hus-creature had dropped the car charger to the ground before we embarked, it had gone kaput.

Which, in my humble opinion, makes it entirely unfit for purpose. Sadly it is still busted over a week later but the company are working on it. Stand by for that update.

So yes, that was our Thanksgiving Break. Many thanks are extended to Domi et al for putting us up and for inviting us up for Christmas.

We are very much looking forward to it 👍🏻😘

Gastronomy is not this

Pumpkin. Pie. Soda.

😮😐😶😦🤔

Pumpkin Pie, as a flavour, is BIG here.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I love pumpkin SPICE – but this? This is a travesty and an abomination to my palate.

Even the hus-creature could not finish it, and he relishes the weird when it comes to comestibles.

Pumpkin pie soda will not be existing in this house again.

Apologies to my American friends, but no, this I do not get.