Feeding My Family // Variety

Variety is the spice of life! An age old saying, that is just so true. Not only is it true for us, but also for our kids. This series has reminded me of that. As much as we as adults appreciate variety, so do our children. This morning I put together a plate full of fun things for the kids to select for breakfast. They had options. We all love options.

A smorgasbord of food: Hard boiled eggs, the four ingredient energy balls, yogurt, Nutri-Grain bars, diced strawberries and oranges.

They loved it! I think the combination of a variety, and complete control over what they ate, made them feel empowered and excited. Each boy compiled a different plate of food and I was okay with that. I felt like pretty much anything on the plate was a healthy choice, or close to it, and would fill their tummies. I wasn’t too worried about bad choices, and I let them just go for it.  It might have been the most peaceful breakfast time we’ve had yet. I might be on to something. I think I’ll just create options for them for breakfast, set them out and let them go for it. I won’t worry too much about how much the eat or what they chose if I selected healthy things to begin with.

For lunch I took a similar approach and gave them a few things I know they like, somethings I know they love, and a few things that I know they are learning to like. I’ve learned this from an Instagram account called Veggies and Virtue. She uses the “like it, love it, learning it,” model and I really works for us. ( if you’d like to hear more from her here head on over to her most recent Instagram post and tag @inspirationclothesline)

Lunch also included a variety and lots of choices. The boys were able to pick between green beans and carrots, turkey or ham, and I included hummus and pretzels which I know they love.

I kept their plates available after they were done so they could eat the leftovers as their afternoon snack. This went fairly well.

Wednesday night is kind of been our “on the go” evening as the boys are a part of AWANA Cubbies.  They chose to have smoothies in the car. I packed them with Greek yogurt, Chia seeds, spinach, and fruit. I am anticipating they will arrive home with their dad and want a snack before bed, but otherwise it’s been a pretty good day filled with nutrition and good choices.

I also found that when I limit snacks they do so much better at mealtime. With less snacking what I put in front of them is appetizing and interesting, rather than a drag or hard to eat.

While they are at AWANA we get to have our community dinner.  The truth is I was supposed to bring the main course tonight, curry!

In just a few minutes before we should’ve been leaving one boy was still napping, two were quietly playing, the baby was nursing, and I was oblivious and hadn’t even started the curry.  Thank God for some Costco Curry I had in the fridge. They have a two pack of two kinds of curry that I had grabbed last time I was there. I threw one in a sauté pan and included a can of coconut milk with it. While I read the kids their Cubbies homework –  yes we are a “night before” or “day of” family- I also burped the baby and shelled some prawns to toss in the curry. I threw them in the sauce and realized that still wasn’t enough in the sauce  to feed us all, so while the kids got dressed and put their shoes on, I quickly chopped some carrots and peeled a potato. I diced it and tossed it in the instant pot. I set it for 10 minutes and by the time we were loaded it had cooked for six. I turned it off, and let it depressurize. Thankfully the carrots and potatoes were fully cooked and I was able to toss them into the curry.  I was late, but at least I had the main course.

I seriously love my Instant Pot and this curry will be one I use in the future for sure! It was a quick dinner, albeit a little bit spicy, it was so tasty and perfect for us adults.

We love our community dinner at “Downpour,” our local brewery and tasting room!

Here I am, known for my curry, throwing together a last-minute not homemade batch of Indian curry for our community dinner.  It just goes to show that variety is for everyone. I love [my] Japanese curry; but this spicy, earthy Indian curry did just the trick tonight.

Just a reminder to try something new, change up the pace, and keep a variety in your family meal plan.

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