Mornings and Monkeys

Like many moms with school-aged kids, my weekday mornings have been about as fun as a barrel of monkeys. Not because a barrel of monkeys are something to enjoy, but because weekday mornings feel a lot like you’ve opened an actual barrel of real live monkeys, and you are now trying to wrangle them into the car with clean clothes, full bellies, and a house that has survived the process.

Yes, I only have two children.

Rushing to get everyone fed, rushing to get lunches packed, rushing to make sure backpacks are ready, water bottles are filled and so-and-so has socks on and the other one has pants on and has remembered the minor detail of facing them the right direction. (We’ve worked hard at setting new trends in this house.  It hasn’t stuck yet. I’ll keep you posted. In the meantime, can someone please tell me how one child doesn’t notice when undies and pants are on backwards or socks are twisted with the heel on top, and the other child can have a pre-mature-mid-life crisis over the feeling of a shirt after it has been washed or a sock line that doesn’t sit in the exact right spot atop the toe? How were these children raised in the same house?)

I get tired of the same battles.

I get tired of repeating the same list of morning jobs.

I get tired of them acting shocked every time I ask them to do a job they’ve been asked to do every day for the last 6 years.

But I am mostly tired of sending my most precious little bundles off into a crazy world after a morning of hurriedness and harping. No one enjoys it, and it certainly isn’t starting any of our hearts in the right place.

This year, I was determined we would not succumb to the morning madness. We made several changes that helped assure a morning of peace and time spent together that we actually enjoy. The minutes together go so quickly; I want to cherish them.

Some of the changes we made were simple and obvious, like clothes being set out the night before, backpacks and folders ready to go before bed. This was part of our plan before, so the next change we made was actually following through on that plan.

Other changes involved a little more preparation, but the result has been better than I ever imagined. The biggest of these changes was on packing lunches.

After just 2 years of packing lunches for just one child, I can not tell you how much I was so over it. And now it would be lunches for two kids with very different tastes: one a backwards-clothes-wearing-vegetarian, the other prefers filet mignon or thinly sliced pickles on tuna that has been mixed just so.

Don’t get me wrong, I love serving my family. I just don’t love throwing away uneaten sandwiches, fighting the urge to buy processed garbage that is convenient and also kids’ favorites… but still processed garbage, throwing away uneaten veggies, kids getting tired of the same thing every day, throwing away ALL OF THE WASTED THINGS, running out of important lunch items and not realizing until the moment I’m packing them. Which is almost never 5 minutes after we are supposed to be leaving.

My first thought was to have the kids pack their own lunches. Then I remembered I like my kitchen clean and don’t so much love mayonnaise on the cabinets or children bleeding because they’ve been accidentally pierced with a knife by a sibling who is trying to slice apples.

Not that that has ever happened. But it most likely would if I gave my barrel of monkeys sharp objects. So no, they would NOT be making their own lunches.

Then I saw a post on Facebook of someone’s idea for pre-made lunch bins where kids pick what they want from each bin and pack their own lunch. I liked the thought, but I noticed the bins were full of lots of processed or pre-packaged foods. So, I decided to make my own version of pre-made lunch bins.

Because I spend the last two weeks of summer in my classroom, and because my kids are lucky teacher’s kids and get to end their summer early to come with me, we started packing lunches 2 weeks before school started. That means the lunch bin plan started a week before that, in mid August. The three of us sat down together, and I asked them what kinds of foods they liked and would be willing to eat in each of the following 5 categories: fruits, veggies, dairy/protein, grains, snacks/treats.

I decided to keep fruits and veggies separate, because one child in particular would never eat a veggie in his life if given the choice. (Ironically, this is the same child who is a vegetarian. Maybe a fruitatarian would be a more fitting name?) I wanted him to have both fruits and veggies, so they each get their own category and bin. I combined dairy/protein for the same child who does not eat meat, but gets protein in other ways, including lots of Greek yogurt.

This first sit-down meeting with the kids was crucial in starting our new routine. If I was going to take the time to fill a bunch of bins with food, I was not about to throw that food away later. It needed to be food they would be willing to eat. We even spent some time roaming through the produce aisle to find more veggies that could be added to our list of options.

Next, I bought 5 shoe-box bins from the Dollar Tree and did some grocery shopping. Also on my list, snack size bags, sandwich size bags, and mini plastic containers for peanut butter and other dips (thanks, Tana, for that idea!) On that first Sunday, and every Sunday since, I’ve spent a bit of time (anywhere from 20 -40 minutes depending on what’s in bins that week), cleaning and chopping food, filling bags, and filling bins. There is a bit of prep involved, but the payoff has been so worth it.

Each morning, the kids do their morning jobs using another system I implemented last spring (post to follow). One of those jobs is to pack their own lunches. They get out the 5 bins – 3 from the fridge, 2 from the pantry. (The fruit bin could possibly be stored in the pantry as well if you didn’t have enough fridge space.) They also set out a basket of cheap spoons and forks I don’t mind losing to the school trash can if they forget to bring them back. lunch bins

They then choose the designated number of items from each bin to fill their lunch bag and put the bins away. Angels sing the hallelujah chorus, and a beam of glorious light from the heavens shines upon our kitchen. Meanwhile, I’m sitting with my feet up, enjoying an extra cup of coffee that is still steaming hot, basking in the realization that I have trained my little monkeys so well.

Actually, I’m usually in the kitchen enjoying the pleasant morning conversation – because there really is a morning calmness – while I empty the dishwasher. There have been a number of days where the entire process happens while I’m in the shower, and I come downstairs to a clean kitchen and packed lunches. No one is bleeding, either. Bonus.

Last week, another miracle happened. We were all tired and moving a bit slow. I told the kids I’d help them out by packing their lunches for them. Near panic ensued, and my 5 and 8 year old kicked their pace into high gear so they’d have time to pack their lunches themselves. Because they love it.

Did you just see that? My kids love packing their own lunches.

I didn’t believe it myself at first. I thought maybe the excitement would wear off after a week or two. Matt bet we’d make it to Halloween at the latest. We are now nearing the end of week 11. Halloween is in 2 days, and we are still going strong. Do you know what that means? I have managed to avoid packing lunches for FIFTY-THREE days! (Yes, I am yelling that, because 53 days of lunches packed NOT BY ME is worth shouting about!) And the only complaint that I’ve heard was the one time I OFFERED TO MAKE THEM. (More celebratory shouting. Angels singing.)

As if the deal wasn’t already good enough, there have been some unexpected benefits of the lunch bins:

  • Both kids are eating healthier lunches than ever. Less sugar, lots of produce variety, healthy choices in all food categories.
  • Some bins have a range of items. You can choose 1 or 2 veggies and 2 or 3 protein/dairy items. Most days, they choose the lower amount. But if they end up hungry, they know they can pick more the next day from any of those bins. However, they also know that if they waste food by not eating their veggies or other healthy options, they won’t be picking from the snack/treat bin the next day.
  • Because they are motivated to get a snack tomorrow, they are motivated to finish their healthy foods today. There have been a few times where the snack was not allowed for one child, and there were no arguments. The rule was understood clearly. In fact, the un-named child didn’t even ask, but packed the lunch sans snack, without a reminder.
  • By picking 1-2 items from the fruit, veggie, and protein/dairy bins, the kids have enough food left in their lunch to eat a snack after school. I’m no longer packing lunches, AND I don’t have to worry about an after school snack.
  • We’ve had really good conversations about healthy eating. For example, the kids wanted to add juice as an option to the fruit bin. We talked about that nearly all the juice choices were made up of mostly sugar and other things they didn’t need. So they asked if juice could be a choice once in a while in the treat bin. Also, those fruit snacks they loved so much? Not actually fruit. Gasp.
  • I’ve never once heard a complaint about lunches being boring or someone getting tired of a certain food.
  • Food is not being wasted. No more 1/2 eaten sandwiches in the garbage.
  • On the weekends, if someone is hungry, they may grab a snack – or even an entire lunch – from the leftovers in the bins. i.e. MOM ISN’T MAKING YET ANOTHER MEAL.
  • We’ve had several evenings where we had to head out last minute. Instead of going through a drive-thru, I had the kids grab something from each bin before we hopped in the car.
  • On the days where I am running late and don’t have a chance to eat at home, I grab my lunch from the bins too. Quick, easy, and healthier than other fast options.

If you’re curious what kinds of things are going in the bins, I’ve included pictures and the lists my kids and I came up with below. Below that, I listed a few tips and things I’ve learned in the last 11 weeks, like what size olive is the right size to fit at least 5 into a plastic container (to fill one hand of course, which is a must when eating olives), or why the container is better than a baggie for olives.

If you try the lunch bins too, I encourage you to come up with your own list with your kids’ input. I’d love to hear what you put in them. My friend Tana started doing the bins a few weeks ago (her kids love it, too), and it’s been great to be able to get ideas from each other.

So go ahead. Make your bins.
Then marvel at your independent little monkeys and your new found freedom.
In a clean kitchen.
You’re welcome.

The Bins

FRUIT BIN (Choose 1)
fruit bin

Currently holds: apples, bananas, cutie oranges, no-sugar added applesauce cups, no-sugar or artificial sweetener fruit cups, raisins that have been in the bin for 11 weeks. (Looks like they prefer the fresh fruit.)
Other fruits we’ve included: grapes, sliced melon, pears, peaches dried fruit, berries, 100% juice (We actually haven’t used that one, but they suggested it. So far, no one has asked. They take water to school.)

VEGGIE BIN (Choose 1-2)
veggie bin

Currently holds: sliced celery, mini pickles, baby carrots, grape tomatoes, mini sweet peppers (2 or 3 to a bag – whole), sliced cucumbers, olives (which are only available as an extra) and ranch (a recently added extra)
Other veggies we’ve included: sugar snap peas, green beans, sliced bell peppers, broccoli, 1/2 an avocado.

DAIRY/PROTEIN BIN (Choose 2-3)
dairy bin

Currently holds: Mini Babybel cheese wheels, string cheese, sliced cheddar cheese (a couple slices in a baggie), Greek yogurt, baggies of almonds, mini cups of peanut butter, baggie with salami and provolone slices
Other dairy/proteins we’ve included: hard boiled egg, tuna in a cup (mixed just so with thinly sliced pickles), cream cheese (for bagels), sliced meats, diced leftover chicken, bags of mixed nuts, pistachios, mini milk containers, egg salad in a bowl

GRAIN BIN (Choose 1) My toughest bin! I need ideas.
Grain bin

Currently holds: crackers (Triscuits), rice cakes, tortillas, granola (for the yogurt), peanut butter cracker sandwiches – which feel like more of a treat/snack than a grain, but sometimes we like to live on the edge, and sandwich boxes in case someone decides they’d like a sandwich. Which has happened exactly never. They’d rather eat the peanut butter with apples or celery, and she prefers her tuna out of a bowl.
Other grains we’ve tried: Pretzels, cups of rice, bagels, baggies of stove-popped popcorn

SNACK/TREAT BIN (Choose 1)
snack bin

Currently holds: pudding, granola bars, Grandma’s banana bread, pumpkin cookies we just made (one in each baggie), fruit snacks that have been there for 11 weeks with the raisins, pre-packaged mini graham crackers, fruit by the foot
Other items we’ve included: jello, peaches in Jell-O, dipped pretzels, fish crackers, yogurt covered raisins, Pirates Booty, Nutella for dipping pretzels or crackers, Costco trail mix with m&ms (or “enemas,” if you’re Jacob. Personally, I prefer the former.)

 

Tips/Things I’ve Learned

  • My kids aren’t as picky as I thought. Not a tip, just a new development.
  • Add a little water in the baggie of carrot slices/baby carrots, and they aren’t yucky and dry by the end of the week.
  • 5 Medium sized olives fit perfectly in a small plastic container. 6 is usually too much and results in at least one squished olive. Large olives are too big, so you can’t get 5. Olive travesty.
  • Olives in a baggie “get smushy” and are not appetizing. Small containers are best.
  • Whole fruits in the fruit bin are great, but since whole apples and pears are hard to eat for kids who have super loose or missing front teeth, we slice them the morning they are chosen.
  • When slicing celery on a Sunday, wrap them tightly in foil or a paper towel before putting them in a baggie to keep them fresh for lunches on Friday or snacking on Saturday. Notice how I didn’t do that this week.
  • Triscuits (original flavor) have exactly 3 ingredients. Whole grain wheat, oil, and salt. Lots better than other crackers’ ingredient lists.
  • I mix tuna and a bit of mayo on Sundays and put it into 3 small containers per 1 can. I do this every other week so she doesn’t get tired of this option.
  • Mixing up the bins week to week helps keep the excitement.
  • Annalise loves avocado. 1/2 an avocado sliced while still in the peel is easy to scoop out with a spoon in a lunch. Squeeze a little lemon on it to keep it fresh for lunch time.
  • Avocado slices freeze well and thaw great by lunch time, but they are a bit messier than scooping fresh chunks out of the peel.
  • You can buy a few hundred mini plastic cups with lids at Cash and Carry for super cheap. (They have a great price on snack size or sandwich size bags, too.)
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Three Things Thursday: Like Father, Like Son

*This post was originally written on October 23, only a few weeks after I began my “Three-Things-Thursday” posts. Only I forgot to hit “publish.” And then I didn’t sit down to write for 6 more weeks. Found this today, hitting publish now. Oops.

 

Turns out I am such a quitter. I’m just not made for the weekly writing of three things.

I have to be inspired.

I have to have a story.

I have to have 5 minutes to sit down without falling asleep.

By the way, just exactly when will that happen? Because I clearly remember my dad doing this when I was a kid. And now I’m… a lot older than that. And yet every time I visit him, Dad still falls asleep within minutes of sitting down. And he is 65. Was it always that way, Dad? Or did you have some years in between us kids sucking out all your energy and your old age sucking out all your energy where you could just sit without becoming comatose?

Just kidding. My dad is a very hard worker. It isn’t his old age that makes him conk out. I believe it is his very efficient use of time that allows him to do so in the rare moments where he actually sits. Seriously. He works super hard while he is up, and he instantly takes good advantage of those precious minutes when he sits.

Anyway, here it is Thursday, and I don’t have 3 specific things to share. But I would like to point out how much my son is like his father…

This is evidenced in the fact that he is ultra picky with his food. As is Matt. Only they are picky with the exact opposite foods. Jacob likes no meat. Matt likes almost nothing but meat. Meal-making is a dream in this house.

It is also evidenced in the fact that Jacob – and his dad – wake up chipper and ready to face the world, or at least talk to it. A lot. Without stopping. And their bodies move quickly. So very quickly for such early hours. Yesterday, Jacob got up, ran in to wake me up and say good morning. I sat up and said I just needed to go potty before I talked to him. In the 5 minutes it took me to stretch, stand, use the bathroom, find my cozy sweatshirt, and head to the coffee pot, Jacob had picked out his clothes, got dressed including shoes and socks, brushed his teeth, and made his bed. And he came running into the kitchen with a smile on his face. Before my coffee had finished brewing.

I am not like them. I am not awake when I am moving around in the morning. My body is up, but my brain has not yet connected to my mouth. Or other parts of me, I think. Which is why I somehow ended up with toothpaste in my eye this morning. Not even kidding. I can’t tell you how this happens. I can only tell you that it is possible. And that it stings. And that flushing it with water takes longer than you might think, because it first gets more foamy before it finally rinses out. Which I guess makes sense, but doesn’t help the pain any.

Thirdly, like his dad, Jacob is kind. He wouldn’t ever want to hurt my feelings. Which is why today, he thought of the kindest way possible to drop a not-so-subtle hint to me about something. He spent the morning at a friend’s house. This friend of mine happens to make delicious homemade bread, and Jacob had some for lunch. On the way home, he said to me, “Mom! You know what? You could not buy bread anymore! Maybe…. maybe you could have Mrs. Schouten teach you how to make bread, and then you wouldn’t have to buy it anymore!”

My four year old. Manipulating me with the idea of saving money. So he can get some fresh yummy bread out of the deal. Because apparently my store-bought bread isn’t good enough.

Which reminds me of the time his father did something very similar. When we were dating, I knew how much Matt loved chocolate cake. It is hands-down his favorite dessert and really goes beyond the normal “favorite food” kind of love. He not only loves the cake, but he often comments that “I know God doesn’t get things wrong, but that just feels like one thing He might have… Chocolate cake should be good for you. It just should. Feeling sick? Eat more chocolate cake. Aren’t sleeping well? It’s ’cause you haven’t been eating enough chocolate cake. Up your cake intake for improved health.”

So while I knew he loved it, I wasn’t sure what kind of chocolate cake he dreamed of. And in a moment of we’re-just-dating-and-I-am-trying-to-impress-insanity, I decided to make three from-scratch chocolate cakes for him to try. Yes, three. With three different from-scratch frostings. Clearly, I had no children to occupy my time. Nor did I have meals to dream up and make for various picky people. And obviously, I was still working on winning the guy over. Because that’s some seriously unnecessary overkill.

I invited my beau over for the cake testing and tried to guess which one would be his favorite. I don’t think I had ever made a cake from scratch before, and now I had done 3 in one day. You can imagine the toll this took on me and my kitchen. You can imagine the anticipation and excitement built up as I served this tall and handsome hunk not one, not two, but three slices of his obsessively favorite dessert. You can imagine the dramatic reaction I had already imagined, like him suddenly dropping to his knee and proposing before finishing the third piece.

Me: Anxious. Excited. Proud. “So? Which is your favorite cake? Which is your favorite frosting???”

Matt: Not showing much emotion. “Hmmm…. I don’t know….”

Me: Waiting impatiently. Feeling a bit disappointed he hasn’t shown signs of awe over my 3-cake accomplishment. But still hopeful that a ring might appear before the night is over. I mean, seriously. I made three from-scratch cakes. THREE. Still waiting for a response…

Matt: Between bites and with a forced excitement. “You know what would be really fun? Maybe someday you and my mom could get together and make chocolate cakes! Don’t you think? Wouldn’t that be fun?”

Me: Dumbfounded. Anger rising. Don’t even bother pulling out a ring now, Buddy, because I’ll probably just smash it into your cake. Into one of them. One of the three. There were THREE.

To be fair, this was many years ago, and my dear husband has grown much older and wiser since this comment. But unfortunately, he has not passed along this wisdom to our son. Who just today thought of the great idea of me hanging out with Mrs. Schouten to learn bread-baking.

The good news is, my son is like his dad. What a good man to look up to and emulate.

The bad news is, my son is like his dad. And that means my mornings are just going to be a bit noisier than my brain is ready for. And I might get hints dropped to improve my cooking and baking skills that are seriously lacking. (To be clear, this would only be from the ignorant but well-meaning 4-year-old. The 39-year-old has learned his lesson.)

Oh, and the other good news: My husband’s obsession over chocolate cake is any of the boxed variety. With frosting out of a can. Which means I will never ever again in my life make a made-from scratch-cake. Let’s be honest, the man is seriously lucky to get any cake after that comment.

(Turns out this wasn’t a Three-Things-Thursday failure after all: 3 ways my son is like his dad AND a story of 3 cakes.)

30 Minute Meals?

Try 5. Yes, Five Minute Meals.

I’m just that good.

Five minute meals that produced CHEERS… From BOTH kids. Yes, you read that right. Even the boy cheered for dinner!

Kid cheers and lavish compliments, such as, “Mommy, this is the best dinner ever.” And, “Mommy, I LOVE this. You should make this more often!” And even, “Mommy, this is so good. Thank you for making us such delicious food.”

And no, I’m not even kidding.

These compliments are helpful, because yesterday after I picked them up from a friend’s house, I was told, “Mommy, she makes the best food. It’s always so creative. Like today, she put thinly sliced pickles on my tuna sandwich! I just love her food. You should try to make food like that sometime.”

So yeah, the compliments ego boosts came at just the right time…

I make the best dinners ever. Delicious food. And in five minutes.

Tonight’s Best Dinner Ever menu:

photo(61)

Burnt grilled cheese and a giant raw carrot.

Eat your heart out, Rachel Ray.

Outsmarted by a 2 year old

Some of you may have already read on Facebook how Jacob outsmarted me tonight at dinner. I had to post it on here as well, because this is where I collect the stories I want to remember. So I’m really posting this for me. And for those of you that missed it…read on!

Posted Wednesday night, 1/23/13, approximately 7 PM:

Here’s the deal. I simply do NOT understand a boy who covers his face so I don’t see the boogers he’s eating, joyfully eats dirt, and has ‘discussed’ the possibility of finding out what poo is like… but will NOT EAT the meal I make for him. This time, it was a meal he’s eaten a hundred times before. He won’t eat it, because he claims it “looks different” than usual. Complete-massively-hysterical-two-year-old-tantrum over the way the meal LOOKS. And JUST ATE A BOOGER.

Seriously, people. Help me understand.

P.S. We have had serious discussions about the dangers in trying poo. I think he’s finally over it.

Posted Wednesday night, 1/23/13, approximately 1 hour later:

In reference to Jacob not eating his dinner (see last post), I tried games. Reverse psychology. Bribery. Trickery. Punishment. I’ve now resorted to manipulation. I “called” the beautiful and talented Julianne Seely, who said that yes, she definitely thought Jacob should eat his food, and she would be so proud of him if he did. (Thanks, Julianne, for being so supportive.) Jacob smiled. “She DID?” I nodded.

The little bugger pulled out a calculator and “called Julianne” as well. “Hi Julianne. I AM NOT eating my dinner, because it is GROSS. K. Bye.” Then he looked at me and said, “Mommy, Julianne said it’s ok. She doesn’t like gross food either. And she is still proud of me.”

Mom: 0, Jacob: 1

What gender is YOUR food?

Jacob has made it known – without actually saying it – that he is a vegetarian. There is not a single meat he will eat, except maybe McDonald’s chicken nuggets, which you can’t really count as meat… or even food. So we avoid those. Which means then that yeah, he eats ZERO meat. I can’t even sneak it into stuff, because he won’t eat something that resembles a casserole or has an ingredient he can’t see. (Neither will his dad, but that’s another story.)

There are very few things Jacob will eat. I’m going to list what I’ve tried so you all know and can give me suggestions, which are welcome. Encouraged, actually:

  • PB sandwiches, plain or with jam usually works. PB with honey? Nope. Unless he’s at Grandma’s.
  • Beans? Sometimes. Re-fried with cheese and sour cream is a success about 50% of the time. Which, let’s face it, 50% of the time is a success. Green beans no more. Whole beans (kidney, black, other) about 10% of the time.
  • Noodles? Never with a capital N.
  • Fruit? Usually – because it’s sweet and sugary.
  • Veggies? Only red, orange, or yellow bell peppers. Not green. The others are sweeter. (But technically, they’re a fruit, too. I won’t get into that, though, since it will likely result in my husband calling me a nerd.)
  • Cheese? If it’s string cheese or Havarti slices from Costco packs. Yes, he’s that picky. Or orange Tillamook cheese on a grilled cheese sandwich.
  • Bagels? Sometimes. With cream cheese usually, but then he sometimes just licks the cream cheese off.
  • Oatmeal? With brown sugar and blueberries. (a.k.a. “Bare-boobies.” For those of you that don’t know that special story, I’ll post it below.)
  • Yogurt? Usually. But not plain greek, which is about the only kind not full of sugary stuff or other junk. (Let me know if you know of a good idea there.)
  • Chips, crackers, fruit snacks and any other processed garbage full of sugar? OF COURSE! Only, we don’t like to buy that stuff, so…

That’s it! Other than that, I’m out of luck. Most of his meals include a PB sandwich and a cheese stick, with hopefully some fruit or bell peppers (not green.)

Today’s lunch menu was a grilled cheese sandwich, a banana, and a glass of milk. I need to go grocery shopping. It was either that or PB, which I get tired of watching him eat.

Annalise and I sat eating ours, while Jacob sat with a scowl. Something like this face he gave to my cousin after being asked to eat a hot dog. (I forgot to inform Andy that Jacob doesn’t eat meat… even hot dogs):a

Yep, that’s my strong-willed little boy. I have no idea where he gets it from.

“Jacob, you need to eat your grilled cheese sandwich, please.” I started gently.

“NOPE! I. NOT. GONNA.” He was a little more firm in his reply.

“But you like grilled-cheese sandwiches! Mommy made you something special that I know you like!”

“Nope, I DO NOT LIKE THEM!”

Annalise, observing the forming struggle turned to me and whispered, “Mommy, you’re calling it a girlcheese sandwich! No wonder he doesn’t like it!” She turned to her brother, “Jacob! Silly mommy just forgot. MINE is a girl-cheese sandwich. YOURS is a boy-cheese sandwich. Will you eat it now?”

Jacob paused, looked at it for a bit, his furrowed brow softened. And then he laughed, “Silly mommy! I am not a gew-wohl. I will eat my boy-cheese sandwich.”

And he did. Silly me. Dogs eat dog food. Of course boys eat boy food and girls eat girl food. Duh.

 

And now, the blueberry story. In case you didn’t already know:

Jacob loves, loves, LOVES, blueberries. Last year, he asked for them all the time. Only he called them “bare-boobies.” I found it utterly hilarious and laughed every time (like an 8-year old boy… remember? My husband found me awfully immature,) until I found myself in the produce section of Costco with my 1 year old in the cart screaming with excitement while waving his arms, “BARE-BOOBIES!!!!!!!!!!!”  Then I just wanted to crawl under the bananas and die. The end.