I'm 40 and my kids are grown (and I did daycare for several years) but I now have a 3yr old granddaughter and I like to fix things like lunch meat, cheese, crackers, fruit, peanutbutter, yogurt, vegetables like; peas, green beans, mini carrots, baby tomatoes etc . . . You can pair them together for a meal. It's not what you'd consider a 'traditional' menu, but the items are healthy, easy to fix finger foods that give your children the ability to pick and choose what they want to eat (the order) and allow them to feed themselves.
My granddaughter strangly enough LOVES (and I mean LOVES) yellow/orange/red peppers. She also loves cucumber and baby tomatoes. She'll eat half a yellow pepper and half a cucumber in a meal. We all find it amazing that she'd have the taste buds for those veggies, most kids don't, but her mom's family have provided these kinds of foods for her snacks and she's learned to love them. She used to eat large tomatoes like apples, but isn't as fond anymore, so their tastes and desire definately change.
I know all about kids being picky, not liking their veggies and in general protesting eating many healthy foods, which leaves you feeling like they don't eat anything healthy.
But if you keep offering the items, over and over and over, they will eventually start to eat them.
My kids physician when they were small used to say if they didn't eat something first time, save it for the next meal, and if they didn't eat it then, save it for the following day. Eventually they will eat it, they'll be hungry, they won't starve.
So, mix and match your healthy choices which are so often great finger foods and let your kids go to work.
My granddaughter likes peanutbutter sandwiches now - something new, so now I'll fix her a 1/2 sandwhich, and she likes to put a potatoe chip in the middle. That is her 'sandwhich and chips' meal. Chips aren't healthy, but 1/2 a large chip on each piece of her sandwhich won't hurt and she's getting the benefits of the peanutbutter and healthy bread.
Just try to be creative and don't stick to 'traditional' - and you'll find you have a whole array of foods you can eat together!
Edited by: KMBRADY at: 3/10/2010 (11:36)