Monday, February 14, 2011

Battles: health vs not health

The battles begin, continue, and at times seem to never end. And while I'm defining "battles" quite loosely, such is parenting. For at least one of my two children, (glass half full, that's 50% of my kids where parenting goes smoothly!) we battle over things we humans needs to do. In a pseudo-valiant attempt on my part to limit battles to those things that would impact one's health, I've let lots of things go, but not when it comes to her health... so what really constitutes health for this MiM? Might depend on the day and my patience.
  • Brushing teeth? Health. Must happen twice daily. Worth the battle
  • Brushing hair? Jury's out on that one. Might be health. Battle not worth it, but still occurs
  • Washing hair? See above
  • Wearing coat? Survey says: Not health. No battle.
  • Eating vegetables, or even one vegetable, even one time? Health. Worth the battle, but losing it.
  • Eating fruit? Health. Mission accomplished.
  • Refrain from antagonizing brother? His health. Battle would ensue, but tenets of role modeling would say to avoid battle and let them work it out.
  • Going to bed at a reasonable hour? Health-related. Battle prolongs time awake. Fail.
  • Letting this MiM sleep a few more minutes in the morning? My health-related. Battle sets bad tone for the day and promotes wakefulness anyway. Resolve not to battle.
  • Hugging and making up? Ahhh, that's what it all comes down to, what are we battling for???


  1. Excellent list of battle-worthy items. As for brushing the hair, I do what my mom did: you're in charge of your hair (if you're old enough-- otherwise, you have to let me brush it), and if it gets out of control, we cut it off (I had a pixie cut for a very long time).

    I worry about fighting over food. Our approach is to emphasize health and the value of veggies, find the ones she'll eat and serve them most of the time, and not let junk replace it (because they are hungry from not eating good food).

  2. hh, agreed! And thanks for that important reminder. Food battles aren't good. Win or lose. I'll simply show her my love of every vegetable that exists. But more importantly, my love of her.

  3. hide veggies. if you cook up cauliflower and puree it into mashed potatoes, she'll never know. soups are ALWAYS amazing ways to get veggies. puree some of them instead of adding cream to thicken the soups up. try baked goods like zucchini bread, sweet potato cookies, etc and use apple sauce/juice as sweetener.

    you can also try a veggie casserole with parmesan cheese and rosemary basil tomato sauce. just slice squash, zucchini, and eggplant really thin, layer them on top of each other with the parm in between. every 3rd layer or so add some sauce. it's delicious and tastes like lasagna, not so much veggies :)

    ps: this is how i get my boyfriend to eat his veggies. he's worse than my nieces and nephew and this stuff works every time :)

  4. For my kid who balks at eating veggies, the solution is that I serve veggies first. After they've been eaten, the rest of the meal is available. Alternate solution is to have his favorite dessert (peach cobbler) available, and only people who eat their vegetables get dessert.

    Good luck :)

  5. I'm like hh above - tell my daughter if she wants long hair she has to brush it, otherwise I'll cut it off. This usually works, but weekends at her dad's house are tough. Although I've provided a brush, she rarely uses it, and Sunday nights are detangling hell. It's getting better, though.

    Sleep and bedtime routine are huge for me, even though kids are getting older. I read somewhere that sleep is as important for mental and physical health in kids as eating fruits and veggies (I lose on veggies, but win on fruits, like you). My son sleeps well, but daughter is a night owl and reads late like me. But as long as she is getting up in the morning and making her bed/getting dressed/etc., I try not to fuss too much at night.

    Antagonizing sibling - ah, a whole other topic to explore. I try to let them work it out, but step in when things are spiraling out of control. A constant battle balance.

    Great list, T!

  6. Gizabeth - Oh definitely, it's a total balance! Kind of like a dance. But with crying. Haven't battled at all today, and they're asleep for the night at this point. It was a happy hugging day. Alas... One. Day. At. A. Time.

  7. Oh, and M3 - she'd know it! She has an uncanny sensory perception (olfactory, mostly). Maybe your boyfriend knows too, ha!

    And warm socks, I like that you are warm socks :-)

  8. I love this! It made me laugh out loud. :)

  9. Thanks Kelly, we need more laughter (and out loud is the best kind!!)


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