They found the JELLO!! My children had their choice of sugar free (AKA sweetened with artificial sugar) orange or strawberry with a side of artificial colorings. Sorry but gag me, please!!! I smiled and let them have their JELLO. Today is a different story.
We made homemade Mango Gelatin full of Vitamin C, Vitamin A and B6! No artificial colorings or sweeteners to poison their little bodies. EASY! If you do not like mango, just try another fruit of choice. Don’t forget to serve with a slice of cheese or top with yogurt. The vitamin C in mango will help your child absorb the calcium in the cheese and yogurt.
- 4 envelopes of unflavored Original Gelatine.
- 4 cups 100% mango juice or any flavor juice but watch out for high fructose corn syrup and other artificial additives in your juices.
- 1 cup pureed fresh or frozen mango (optional- gives a creamy texture and more nutrition)
- 2 tbsp honey or sugar (infants below one year should not have honey)- optional
- Fresh sliced fruit for garnish.
- Chill one cup of juice until ice cold.
- Put ice cold juice in a large pot and sprinkle gelatin over it. Let set for at least 1 minute.
- Boil 3 cups of juice and add sugar/honey.
- Puree 1 cup fresh or frozen mango until really thin. Add it to boiling juice and bring back to boil.
- Add hot juice to gelatin and mix.
- Pour into cups, bowls or baking pan.
- Add sliced strawberries to gelatin.
- Chill until firm.
- Store in refrigerator.
Do you children love to play in water? A great way to combine nutrition education; motor skill development; sensory development and family fun is to turn your kitchen sink into a water table without the additional cost. In our home, we accomplish food preparation and processing by using the water table concept. We have fun and get work done in the process.
Today, I boiled a 1/2 bushel of local tomatoes and dumped them into an ice water bath. Once they where cool enough to handle, I unleashed my children. They had a blast for over an hour. Not only did they take part in canning local tomatoes but they learned so much about water buoyancy, color, texture, smell, temperature and nutrition.
In fact, they even took a bite of a raw tomato. This is a great way to introduce children to vegetables without added pressure. It is also a great way to get your children involved in kitchen activity with age appropriate activities.
A three year old’s desire to paint her fingernails and a three year old’s desire to eat “junk” food are powerfully related. My daughter has been asking to paint her nails for at least a year now. As a mother I refused to accept she is old enough to put any type of cosmetic product on her body. After all she is only three, right?
This is the problem- she leaves my home. I cannot shelter her from the influences of the outside world.
- She sees other adults and children with nail polish.
- She sees other adults and children eating food I typically do not purchase or serve in my home.
- Other people offer to paint her nails.
- Other people offer her food I normally would not consider buying, serving or eating.
One day she came out of her “work room” with her nails painted many colors with markers. I soon realized, if I try to shelter her from nail polish she will figure out a way to get it and paint her nails.
I look at “junk” food the same way. I have an opportunity to teach her how to self regulate food and make healthy choices. If I shelter her from the food she sees other children eating, she may develop a mistrust association with me and food. I do not want to give junk food that much power.
After she was introduced to the nail polish it was a constant hit for 3 days. I now leave it in a place where she has full access to it. I took the power away and it is now an after thought. This theory can work with “junk” food as well.
Free Range of Popsicles!
I offer my child a “store” bought popsicle one time per day. She can decide when she wants to eat it. She can even eat it before a meal but she ONLY gets one. The stash is not out of her reach as she has full access to it. I am teaching her self control and trust at the same time. She knows I trust her to follow the rules and believe it or not- it works! I learned this theory from Dr. Dina Rose after reading “Lollypops Whenever They Want” (thank you!!!).
According to the The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition children who are forbidden “junk” food will only have a stronger desire to eat those foods. The article sites studies reporting that restricting access to foods may increase the child’s preferences and intake of the restricted foods while diminishing self-control in eating. – “the forbidden fruit” theory.
I am sure if you think of a non-food situation (nail polish) in your home, you may see the same pattern. I tried the “free range” lollypop theory with popsicles and nail polish. Yes, it works!!! The power is gone and my daughter controls her consumption. A great lesson for myself and her to say the least!