We’ve started giving Ben some utensils while we eat. He seems to enjoy playing with them, and everything I’ve read says kids will want to emulate their parents and use silverware. He’s played with them a few times, but it hasn’t been something we’ve worked on until recently. He seems pleased to have his own spoon at dinner, but getting it to actually work is a bit of a challenge. If you think about it, scooping something onto a spoon and getting it to your mouth does take some skill, so I think he does pretty well with his explorations. He has a pretty good system going. He dips the spoon into the food container and pulls it out. Then he shoves his other hand into the container, grabs a handful of food, and shoves it into his mouth. Very effective.
Step 1: Dip the spoon.
Step 2: Grab food with the other hand.
Step 3: Shove it in your face.
As you can see, you are able to eat very well this way. Now yes, this is quite messy. Quite, quite messy. But Ben is happy, and he is eating more since he can feed himself his purees this way. He wasn’t happy with Pat and I trying to feed him. He gets a lot of his vegetables this way, and I am all for whatever it takes to get him to eat veggies. Along with this method, he now likes when we hold his plate and let him pick off what he wants to eat. Sure, this could mean we could just put the food all onto his tray or give him a plate. But no, that usually just ends up with food all over the floor. I am fine with mess that gets Ben to eat his veggies, but I don’t like scrubbing the floor after every meal. We are working on manners with Ben, because I am a big believer in learning proper table manners from childhood. At this young age though there are very few ‘rules’ enforced. Not throwing food is a big part of that. Ben has to not throw his food, use his indoor voice, and not bang on his tray. Getting food on himself from the act of eating is something that will take care of itself in time. Until then, I am obviously stocking up on pictures of Ben looking adorable and wearing his lunch.
Maybe I’ll ask Santa for some more stain stick for Christmas this year. 😉