Vegetables: the long game.


I’d lost all hope that my child would ever willingly eat vegetables without being coerced (aka threatened or bribed). Sure I kept involving leafy produce with meals (sometimes resorting to sneaky methods), but after the good part of two years and very little success, I was beginning to think this child of mine would never see reason. Sure she’ll eat mysterious items off the floor without flinching, but expecting her to put anything green in her body is completely unreasonable.

A few weeks back, however, I had some minor wins.

For the first time in ages, she agreed to share my morning smoothie with me and even finished her (tiny) cup. I’d been told from the start, smoothies were the answer for veggie averse littles, but mine appeared to be the exception to the rule. I recently discovered, however, that she will try nearly any beverage if presented in this little cup of hers that doesn’t have a lid. Much more grown up, I suppose. There have been many repeats of our morning cheers since. I have to act very nonchalant about the whole thing, of course. I practically hold my breath any time she raises that little cup to her lips. It was so hard won and yet I’m pretty sure I have very little to do with this sudden change of heart.

Another shift that started to happen of late was a keener interest in whatever we had on our plates during dinner. While I generally don’t feed her a different meal from mine and my husbands, I won’t bother to give her salad when it’s on the menu. Instead, I’ll usually give her one or two different veggies from the salad bowl (that she inevitably ignores entirely, mind you). I’m just happy if she’ll put one in her mouth, whether she eats it or not. Lately, however, she’s asked to get some lettuce directly from the bowl, dressing and all. Maybe the secret is the dressing? On more than one occasion, she has actually happily chewed and swallowed said lettuce too. I repeat: my child has eaten lettuce. This is not a drill.

Perhaps my most astonishing and exciting success with greens, however, was the broccoli breakthrough. I serve it at least once a week because I love it. Despite this, L has always refused them in every form. But they’re like tiny yummy trees! Come on! Last week, however, without any fanfare and seemingly out of nowhere, she decided to give it a go. She ate the florets off every piece on her plate. And she has continued to do so on any night I’ve served it since. I almost felt like I couldn’t write about it or else I’d jinx the whole thing. Honestly. It’s just taken forever to gain these minor food victories, you know?

Perhaps just seeing us eat and enjoy veggies despite her own refusal has finally made her curious? Ok sure. That sounds plausible.

That was my plan all along, don’t you see!




2 thoughts on “Vegetables: the long game.

  1. It took a while with my son too. At one stage, he was surviving on cheese and biscuits because he wouldn’t eat anything else. Now he is nearly 3 and some days he surprises me and eats a whole lot of veg without prompting. I guess we’ve built the habit finally!

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