Sunday, August 14, 2011

Marie Callender's #under500 Meals "Tricks to Getting Kids to Eat Healthy"

I didn't eat very good as a child. Honestly, I don't remember much about meals and food choices from when I was a kid. My two most vivid memories surrounding food would be my grandma's chocolate chip cookies and my best friends mom's cooking, which was always a well-balanced variety of foods I barely ever saw at my own house.

My parents divorced when I was young, and my mother didn't have much money to feed us. Meals of hot dogs, macaroni & cheese and peanut butter jelly sandwiches were the norm. I don't blame my mom, she did her best, I know that, but I don't remember many meals that introduced me to new foods. This is probably the exact reason why I grew into a very picky eater, and continued to be one as an adult. It wasn't until I met my husband and started eating meals at his parents house that I started eating new foods (because what new girlfriend won't eat her new boyfriend's mom's cooking? LOL).

I always said I would do my best as a parent to make sure my kids got a variety of foods introduced to them, but it's hard when you yourself don't like that many foods. So I blame myself for my kids pickiness in eating. Jonah won't touch a vegetable with a ten-foot pole. A few weeks ago, I FORCED him to eat one small bite of a green bean and he puked on the kitchen table. I KID YOU NOT! And Lily, well, she has a love-hate relationship with food, and every day can be a new discovery of her hating something she always liked, or vice versa. Ah, the games we play at meal time!

I have tried a variety of tricks to get the kids to eat something, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. I have found if I sort of "white lie" sometimes works, like calling a less desirable food "cake" or "candy", Lily will sometimes fall for that. Or hiding something healthy in something yummy, like veggies in brownies or veggies in spaghetti sauce. Or sometimes, a good old fashioned bribe "if you eat 3 bits of ______, you can have ice cream", that is our biggest winner around here! I just know it's not what your child eats in ONE day that matters, it's better to look at what they have eaten over the last week or so when it comes to making sure they get the proper nutrition they need.

I do like the fact that I can eat good foods without sabotaging my belly (or my pant size) because Marie Callender's makes it so easy and convenient. I love the variety there is to choose from at my local grocer when it comes to their under 500 calorie meals. This week I tried the Honey Roasted Turkey Breast (I ate it so fast, I forgot to take a picture!) and again, like the two weeks past, I was pleasantly surprised by how yummy the meal was. The turkey was tender and the cheddar-bacon mashed potatoes were SO GOOD!

I love how my kids will ask what I'm eating when I make myself a Marie Callender's meal. Every once in a while, they will ask to try it. Lily loved the potatoes, so I am thinking about finding a recipe to make up a whole batch for a family meal sometime soon.

Don't forget, you can learn more about Marie Callender's #under500 Meals and even print yourself a coupon on their website!

Full Disclosure: I am working with Marie Callender's and The Motherhood on this project and am receiving a stipend for my review of the products. As always, you can rest assured you will always get a true and honest description of my experiences while reviewing this product, regardless of compensation or products provided. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me by email.

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