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Not Every Meal is a Happy One

Usually Henry is a very cheerful little boy, and for the most part eating together is a pleasant experience. At times, however, Henry is not in the mood to eat.

Some days, he just wants to play with his food or spend mealtime search for a little crumb that fell in his chair. Other times he gets distracted by the ceiling fan or the kitchen drawer handle. I'm not worried if he doesn't eat, since food before one is just for fun.
Where did I drop that raisin?
Most days, however, Henry is ready to eat as soon as I put on his bib. He doesn’t want to wait around for me to fill his water cup or get the silverware on the table. I've learned that it is best to have everything ready when his bib goes on. On a recent evening, dinner was cooked, the table was set and I put Henry’s bib on him. I called to Daddy that dinner was ready, but it took him a few minutes to finish up his project. Since we don’t start eating until everyone is at the table, Henry started to lose patience waiting for Daddy to arrive. Once the tears started, I took off his bib and picked him up for a quick cuddle. When Daddy was ready, we restarted the process and Henry was ready to dig in.

Henry lost patience waiting for dinner to begin.
Occasionally, Henry just has a really bad day. When Henry misses a nap, it doesn’t take much for him to get cranky in the evenings. Arsenic hour strikes quickly, even when his favorite foods are in front of him.
Henry can go from content to complete meltdown in under 2 minutes.

Don't worry -- Daddy scooped Henry up for a snuggle right after I snapped this photo.

On days like this, we resort to one of two possibilities. Sometimes I can placate Henry by letting him sit on my lap for the remainder of the meal. I only use this option if we are nearly done eating and I can maneuver my food with one hand. If not, then Daddy and I will switch off holding Henry while the other parent eats. It isn’t ideal, but luckily we don’t need to use this remedy very often.


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