EMERGENCY PARENTING: The One Word That Can Save The Day

Sibling world war 23756 breaks out just as I’m trying to get tea.   I’m tired and frazzled from a long day and too many thoughts going on in my head and too long a gap since I last stopped to clear them.   The cries and screams get louder and l can feel my heart rate increase and little bubbles of irritation start to expand in my chest.

The urge to yell, “Oh for goodness sake, what’s happening now??  Can’t you all just play nicely just for ten minutes whilst I get tea ready?” is enormous.  The urge to slam my knife down on the chopping board and release my annoyance onto the most obvious (but not necessarily the actual) perpetrator is huge.

But another part of me remembers that I’ve been here before.  Well, several hundred times actually.  And this part of me is ever so slowly learning that this is not a productive solution.  This is a satisfying release of tension for maybe five seconds.  But then things get worse, and dealing with the aftermath takes time and energy and is frequently messy.

But as the screams get louder, my mind goes blank.  All that stuff I’ve read and learnt over the years about dealing with situations like this, damn, where’s it all gone??  What am I supposed to do and say again??  That wise list of ‘Ten ways to ease sibling conflict’ that I saved the other day, yep I can remember the picture, the font it was written in, but what the heck did it advise??  In this precise moment, when I need it most, I have no clue.

Can you relate?

Do you sometimes feel like you are drowning in parenting advice; ‘dos’ and ‘don’ts’ and’ shoulds’ and ‘shouldn’ts’, and endless lists, and helpful phrases and memes.  Which all seem perfectly logical and perfectly helpful at the time of reading.  But in that moment, the moment you really need to use it, everything flies from your head and you are left with nothing but a floundering, half-baked, auto-pilot reaction.

If so, you most definitely could do with this; this one utterly awesome word:

UNRUFFLED

Yep, this one word, that I picked up from the brilliant Janet Lansbury, has got me though a lot of tricky times of this sort.   When all else fails, it’s the only thing that I strive to remember.   I think I may get it tattooed onto my hand actually.  UNRUFFLED.

Take a breath and just think or say UNRUFFLED.

This is the perfect description of how you want your mind to be.  How you want to think.  And how you want to speak.  This is what you want to mirror to your children.  This is what you want them to feel.

Being UNRUFFLED will allow you to calmly take stock, find some objectivity, and detach from the emotional heat of the situation.

Things have become highly charged, but here you are, calm and UNRUFFLED.  Not taking sides, not accusing or judging, not yelling or punishing.

Yes, you may have to intervene and separate them if there’s a danger of someone getting physically hurt.  But doing this firmly yet calmly and in as UNRUFFLED a manner you can muster will always be the best way.

Being UNRUFFLED will signal to your children that there’s no imminent danger, no threat.  This will help to override their fight-or-flight response quicker and re-establish the ‘stairs’ to their upstairs brains (see here).

Being UNRUFFLED will allow you to commentate on what you’re seeing in a balanced and fair way.

Being UNRUFFLED will allow you to pause and let them express their big emotions if they need to.

Being UNRUFFLED will allow you to give them space to come up with their own solutions.

And however much they are fighting and however emotionally messy and tense it becomes, if you succeed in being UNRUFFLED, at least you won’t also have your own guilt at how you handled it to deal with and ruminate on later.

I can’t promise it will work for you.  Or that it will work every time.  All I know is that it’s very often worked for me and for lots of other people too.

So why not give it a try?

Finding the self-control to resist from having your own tantrum is excruciatingly tricky.  But it’s most definitely worth it.

Need more help with this?  Contact me here.

HI! I'M DR. NICOLA FARR

HI! I'M DR. NICOLA FARR

I'm a mama of 3 and a parenting coach specialising in picky eating and mealtime stress.

I'm passionate about inspiring parents to enjoy mealtimes & help their children develop a healthy long-term relationship with food.

See here for the services I offer or email me for more info.  You can also find me on Facebook and Instagram.

FUSSY EATER MYTH #5: YOU KNOW EXACTLY HOW MUCH YOUR CHILD NEEDS TO EAT

It's true that we have an incredible understanding now of what is required nutritionally-speaking for optimum health. But there is concern amongst many health professionals that parents are frequently vastly over-estimating the amount of food children can and/or need...
Read More

WANT LESS STRESSFUL MEALTIMES? WANT TO STOP WORRYING ABOUT YOUR FUSSY EATER?

(This article was originally posted on the Mother Tribe blog on 22.04.17) A doctorate in child development and years of working with children and families did not prepare me for the sheer frustration and stress of feeding my own family. Three different children with...
Read More

FUSSY EATER MYTH #4: CHILDREN REFUSE TO TRY NEW FOODS BECAUSE THEY ARE STUBBORN OR ‘TESTING’ BOUNDARIES

Without doubt children have very different personalities and some are much more on the feisty end of the scale than others, but this is NOT directly related to refusing to try or eat a particular food.  Passive, laid back children can be just as fussy when it comes to...
Read More

FLEXIBILITY IS ONE OF YOUR BEST MEALTIME FRIENDS

I remember reading something a while ago along the lines of, whenever you think you know or understand something always leave a space next to it in your brain for new information.  I’ve probably totally trashed a beautiful quote there and unfortunately, I have...
Read More

FUSSY EATER MYTH #3: YOU NEED TO MAKE FOOD MORE EXCITING & TRY SPECIAL RECIPES

You've seen these websites and resources, right? The ones that are aimed at helping you with your fussy eater that focus predominantly on recipes...recipes that even the fussiest of fussy eaters are allegedly 'guaranteed' to eat. Except even after you spend ages...
Read More

TEMPERAMENT & FUSSY EATING: IS YOUR CHILD A ‘SUPERTASTER’?

DO YOU HAVE A PICKY EATER?  DO YOU SOMETIMES BLAME  YOURSELF FOR YOUR CHILD'S FUSSY EATING? Please don't. I know it can sometimes seem like everyone else's children eat everything and yours just won’t. But it's really not true - limited food choice is extremely common...
Read More

FUSSY EATER MYTH #2: FUSSINESS STARTS AT AROUND 12-MONTHS-OLD AS BABY BECOMES MORE WILFUL

Well, it is certainly true that it is frequently around about this age that parents start to regret having told everyone that their child loves food and is such a ‘good’ eater. Very often it can seem like overnight they go from eating everything in sight to refusing...
Read More

WHAT’S MAKING YOUR CHILD ‘FUSSY’ WITH FOOD?

The trouble with many articles offering expert opinions about fussy eating and mealtime stress is that they tend to offer a couple of generic, one-sized fits all ‘solutions’ and fail to take into account that there are many different types of ‘fussy eater’ and quite a...
Read More

FUSSY EATER MYTH #1: YOUR CHILD MUST EAT A RAINBOW COLOURED PLATE AT EVERY MEAL

If you present your child with a beautifully colourful, perfectly balanced plate of food at every meal and they willingly gobble it all down - wow, consider yourself extremely blessed! But if not, try not to sweat it. This is very common for all children, not just the...
Read More

WEANING YOUR BABY: 4 ESSENTIAL TRUTHS FOR LONG TERM FUSS-FREE EATING

(This article was originally posted on at http://mammainpearls.com/weaning-your-baby/ on 03.04.17) Very often when it’s time to take the exciting leap to the weaning stage, our focus is so much on the present that we forget to think about the longer-term eating...
Read More

HERE’S HOW MANY EASTER EGGS I LET MY KIDS EAT..

When you SPECIFICALLY request a trusted relative NOT to buy chocolate for your kids for Easter (but a small inedible present instead)...and they do it anyway. And not even a small one; a very large, indulgent-looking one each. THIS I find mega frustrating. And...
Read More

INSISTING ON ‘TASTING’ IS NOT THE ANSWER TO PICKY EATING

Imagine that you popped over to my house for a cuppa and I put a plate of snacks in front of you. And then instead of saying, "Here, help yourself!" I said, "Look at this yummy food I've got for you, try it! Have some! Just one little bite, go on, I'll give you a...
Read More

WHEN THEY DON’T EAT WHAT YOU KNOW THEY LIKE…

"But you LOVE chicken and rice! Here, have some chicken and rice!" "Don't like chicken and rice." "Yes you DO, you ate a whole bowlful the other day!" Do you ever find yourself having this sort of crazy-making conversation with your toddler or child? You kind of know...
Read More

MY JOURNEY TO FUSS-FREE EATING

I think even as a very young child I knew deep down that being ‘forced’ to eat and rigid mealtime rules just weren't right. I remember sitting at the dining table feeling so confused; I wasn't particular hungry, I'd eaten all the ‘nice’ bits on my plate, and just the...
Read More

HOW TO HANDLE “I HATE YOU MUMMY!”

Hearing these words for the first time from your sweet, innocent ‘baby’ is pretty gutting really.
I had asked my 7-year-old to start tidying away the Lego as it was bedtime soon, and he replied, “No Mummy, I’m still building this.” I could hear he was fairly cross and passionate, and so thinking I was being quite reasonable, I said,

Read More

DO YOU HAVE A FUSSY EATER? ARE YOU FED UP WITH MEALTIMES?

 

 

Click here to apply

 to join my
6 week, one-to-one, Fuss-Free Eating for Life coaching programme

 

 

APPLY NOW

SUPPORTING YOUR SENSITIVE CHILD: 5 PRACTICAL TIPS

My three-year-old is very sensitive.  I wouldn’t go as far as highly sensitive, a bit too early to conclude that yet for him I think.

But he’s definitely very sensitive.  He is astonishingly aware and has been since he was a baby.  He has an intuitive understanding of feelings, both his own and other people’s, and he processes the vibe or atmosphere in a room almost immediately.

This is great in lots of ways.  He knows if someone loves him, he knows if someone likes him.  He knows if he is genuinely being amusing or entertaining.  And he knows if someone sincerely wants to connect or play with him.

But he also knows if he is being laughed at.  If he is being talked about or patronised or disrespected.  He knows if someone is coercing him, or assessing him, or being disingenuous.

In fact, he’s opened my eyes to how many adults feel it’s perfectly okay and ‘normal’ to behave like this towards children.  Including myself too sometimes, to be honest.  Particularly when a child is very quiet, it is disturbingly easy to forget that there’s a fully functioning, intelligent individual inside who deserves as much respect and equality as every adult.

For sensitive children it’s a double whammy; they are hyper aware that these things are occurring, and they are also hyper hurt and distressed by them.  It makes my little boy feel so squirmy and self-conscious and yucky that he often gets an overwhelming urge to to run away and hide.

I worry for him because it adds an extra layer of complexity to an already highly complicated world.  The average person is bombarded daily with a crazy amount of stimulation as it is.  For a child with a highly sensitive nervous system who is attuned to subtleties and deeply processing everything, things can quickly become overwhelming.  And also very frightening.

But I am also grateful that we are living in times where there is a growing awareness and understanding of these things.  We now know that being highly sensitive is a genetic disposition, that is, there is a physiological difference in how the nervous system responds and is wired.

And most importantly, he’ll also understand and know about this from an early age.  He’ll know there’s nothing ‘wrong’ with him and that calls to ‘man-up’ are both unhelpful and misguided.  He’ll hopefully be able to build and focus on the incredible positives of this disposition; characteristics such as intuition, creativity, kindness, empathy and understanding of the needs of others, the list is endless.

And there’s also lots of things that we now know that we parents can do to help ease the path for our sensitive ones.  Below is a list of just some of them.  For more information or help with your sensitive child, please do contact me here.

  1. Choose childcare carefully

Even if you know of a really great day care facility or extra-curricular club that was loved by siblings or friends, bear in mind that it may not necessarily be right for this particular child.  Sensitive children tend to find one-on-one relationships easier to cope with than groups, as there is only one lot of stimulation to navigate and adapt to.  They thrive in warm and nurturing environments and with people who ‘get’ them and are responsive to their needs.

  1. Help make accurate interpretations

Sensitive children can be hyper reactive to criticism and can ‘read into’ situations too much and misconstrue them more negatively than is necessarily the case.  They need both someone to listen to them and validate their feelings (see below), but also a calming objectivity to help them make sense of situations e.g. “Actually Jonny, Grandma wasn’t laughing at you.  She was laughing at something she was watching on the TV behind you.”

  1. Be aware that they may lash out

Younger children, particularly, often resort to mild aggression when they feel overstimulated and overwhelmed.  A soft play or toddler group full of other children, for example, can be a very scary place for a sensitive child, and lashing out may be the only way they can defend against the sheer terror and overwhelm.   Knowing why this is happening is so helpful in guiding how we respond.

If you’ve downloaded your free ‘Betty Brain’ animation [link] you will know that these children are responding from the oldest, reptilian-like part of their brain.  Their limbic system is super reactive to fear and the detection of ‘threats’ – and so their ‘fight-or-fight response is activated very quickly.  Their upstairs brain (access to logic, rational thinking etc.) shuts down and they lash out (fight) to ‘protect’ themselves.  Unfortunately, this is still  not common knowledge and many children displaying this behaviour are misunderstood and punished/reprimanded, which results in more fear and a further spiral of defensive behaviour.

  1. Empathise and Acknowledge

The more you can help them to feel understood and validate their feelings the better.  For example, “Yes, it’s very noisy isn’t it.  It’s hard going somewhere this busy.”  And it’s important to do this from a place of strength and trust that you know they will get through it, you know they will find a way to cope and thrive.

All children are responsive to their parent’s nervous systems, but sensitive children are, of course, highly attuned to them.  For this reason, modelling strength, calm and inner certainty that you know they will be okay is extra important.  If, for example, you are at a party cowering in the corner because you are scared to talk to anyone and are finding it overwhelming, do not be surprised that your child won’t leave your side!  Sensitive children will pick up on even very slight changes in your behaviour or anxiety levels and respond accordingly.

  1. Try not to assume they will be shy or introverted

There’s a fair bit of confusion around these terms and incorrect ‘labelling’ can be pretty damaging (see here).  In particular, it’s helpful to be aware that ‘sensitive’ and ‘introvert’ are often used interchangeably but this is not necessarily the case.  Although many sensitive children are indeed introverts, not all are – and conversely, many introverts are not particularly sensitive.  My son, for example, loves being with other people, gets energy from other people, and is extremely gregarious and fun-loving (he is more towards the extrovert end of the scale).  But only once he’s got to know people, feels comfortable and relaxed and still has full access to his ‘upstairs’ brain (see here).

HI! I'M DR. NICOLA FARR

HI! I'M DR. NICOLA FARR

I'm a mama of 3 and a parenting coach specialising in picky eating and mealtime stress.

I'm passionate about inspiring parents to enjoy mealtimes & help their children develop a healthy long-term relationship with food.

See here for the services I offer or email me for more info.  You can also find me on Facebook and Instagram.

FUSSY EATER MYTH #5: YOU KNOW EXACTLY HOW MUCH YOUR CHILD NEEDS TO EAT

It's true that we have an incredible understanding now of what is required nutritionally-speaking for optimum health. But there is concern amongst many health professionals that parents are frequently vastly over-estimating the amount of food children can and/or need...
Read More

WANT LESS STRESSFUL MEALTIMES? WANT TO STOP WORRYING ABOUT YOUR FUSSY EATER?

(This article was originally posted on the Mother Tribe blog on 22.04.17) A doctorate in child development and years of working with children and families did not prepare me for the sheer frustration and stress of feeding my own family. Three different children with...
Read More

FUSSY EATER MYTH #4: CHILDREN REFUSE TO TRY NEW FOODS BECAUSE THEY ARE STUBBORN OR ‘TESTING’ BOUNDARIES

Without doubt children have very different personalities and some are much more on the feisty end of the scale than others, but this is NOT directly related to refusing to try or eat a particular food.  Passive, laid back children can be just as fussy when it comes to...
Read More

FLEXIBILITY IS ONE OF YOUR BEST MEALTIME FRIENDS

I remember reading something a while ago along the lines of, whenever you think you know or understand something always leave a space next to it in your brain for new information.  I’ve probably totally trashed a beautiful quote there and unfortunately, I have...
Read More

FUSSY EATER MYTH #3: YOU NEED TO MAKE FOOD MORE EXCITING & TRY SPECIAL RECIPES

You've seen these websites and resources, right? The ones that are aimed at helping you with your fussy eater that focus predominantly on recipes...recipes that even the fussiest of fussy eaters are allegedly 'guaranteed' to eat. Except even after you spend ages...
Read More

TEMPERAMENT & FUSSY EATING: IS YOUR CHILD A ‘SUPERTASTER’?

DO YOU HAVE A PICKY EATER?  DO YOU SOMETIMES BLAME  YOURSELF FOR YOUR CHILD'S FUSSY EATING? Please don't. I know it can sometimes seem like everyone else's children eat everything and yours just won’t. But it's really not true - limited food choice is extremely common...
Read More

FUSSY EATER MYTH #2: FUSSINESS STARTS AT AROUND 12-MONTHS-OLD AS BABY BECOMES MORE WILFUL

Well, it is certainly true that it is frequently around about this age that parents start to regret having told everyone that their child loves food and is such a ‘good’ eater. Very often it can seem like overnight they go from eating everything in sight to refusing...
Read More

WHAT’S MAKING YOUR CHILD ‘FUSSY’ WITH FOOD?

The trouble with many articles offering expert opinions about fussy eating and mealtime stress is that they tend to offer a couple of generic, one-sized fits all ‘solutions’ and fail to take into account that there are many different types of ‘fussy eater’ and quite a...
Read More

FUSSY EATER MYTH #1: YOUR CHILD MUST EAT A RAINBOW COLOURED PLATE AT EVERY MEAL

If you present your child with a beautifully colourful, perfectly balanced plate of food at every meal and they willingly gobble it all down - wow, consider yourself extremely blessed! But if not, try not to sweat it. This is very common for all children, not just the...
Read More

WEANING YOUR BABY: 4 ESSENTIAL TRUTHS FOR LONG TERM FUSS-FREE EATING

(This article was originally posted on at http://mammainpearls.com/weaning-your-baby/ on 03.04.17) Very often when it’s time to take the exciting leap to the weaning stage, our focus is so much on the present that we forget to think about the longer-term eating...
Read More

HERE’S HOW MANY EASTER EGGS I LET MY KIDS EAT..

When you SPECIFICALLY request a trusted relative NOT to buy chocolate for your kids for Easter (but a small inedible present instead)...and they do it anyway. And not even a small one; a very large, indulgent-looking one each. THIS I find mega frustrating. And...
Read More

INSISTING ON ‘TASTING’ IS NOT THE ANSWER TO PICKY EATING

Imagine that you popped over to my house for a cuppa and I put a plate of snacks in front of you. And then instead of saying, "Here, help yourself!" I said, "Look at this yummy food I've got for you, try it! Have some! Just one little bite, go on, I'll give you a...
Read More

WHEN THEY DON’T EAT WHAT YOU KNOW THEY LIKE…

"But you LOVE chicken and rice! Here, have some chicken and rice!" "Don't like chicken and rice." "Yes you DO, you ate a whole bowlful the other day!" Do you ever find yourself having this sort of crazy-making conversation with your toddler or child? You kind of know...
Read More

MY JOURNEY TO FUSS-FREE EATING

I think even as a very young child I knew deep down that being ‘forced’ to eat and rigid mealtime rules just weren't right. I remember sitting at the dining table feeling so confused; I wasn't particular hungry, I'd eaten all the ‘nice’ bits on my plate, and just the...
Read More

HOW TO HANDLE “I HATE YOU MUMMY!”

Hearing these words for the first time from your sweet, innocent ‘baby’ is pretty gutting really.
I had asked my 7-year-old to start tidying away the Lego as it was bedtime soon, and he replied, “No Mummy, I’m still building this.” I could hear he was fairly cross and passionate, and so thinking I was being quite reasonable, I said,

Read More

DO YOU HAVE A FUSSY EATER? ARE YOU FED UP WITH MEALTIMES?

 

 

Click here to apply

 to join my
6 week, one-to-one, Fuss-Free Eating for Life coaching programme

 

 

APPLY NOW

THE ONLY WAY TO AVOID WEEKDAY MORNING STRESS (for me, anyway)

The absolute game changer for me is getting up before the kids.  A good amount of time before the kids.  If I don’t, sometimes the morning goes okay, sometimes it doesn’t.  But if I DO get up early, I can pretty much guarantee that it will.

Why?

Because whatever state the kids are in, it doesn’t matter.  I’ve had some me-time so I’m centred and relaxed.  I’m showered and dressed so I’m organised.  Lunches are done, or nearly.   I have time to focus on making breakfast or helping the kids get dressed, finish homework, or whatever else needs to be done.

And, most importantly, I have time and space and energy to connect with them.  Being asleep is actually a pretty big separation for children and it’s very common for them to wake feeling disconnected and distant.

Some kids find the transition to the day harder than others and they all seem to deal with it differently.  My eldest, for example, wakes up and reads his way into the day, whilst the littlest tends to want to go straight to his dinosaurs and cars and play his way into the day.  My middlest struggles the most, and more often than not, groggily mopes and grumps her way into the day.

In this state, asking her to put on her clothes or get herself breakfast or happily cooperate in any way is just never going to happen.  I’m talking from LOTS of experience.

She needs more time to wake up than the other two, but even more crucially, she also seems to need more help to re-establish her connection and relationship with us and have her ‘love tank’ re-filled.

This can mean snuggling on the sofa for five minutes reading a story, playing a quick game of cards or silly chasing games, engaging her in making breakfast (she loves cooking), or even just talking to her one-on-one for five minutes about her day or anything to do with her really.  It doesn’t really matter how, the key is that she feels our warmth, desire to connect and belief in her especialness; we quite literally need to re-fill her with love after a long (to her brain) night apart.

I know it perhaps sounds a little hard work for first thing in the morning, but I promise you it’s worth it.  Because once they are re-filled, it’s like re-programming them back to their natural state of ease and co-operation and the rest of the morning tends to flow so much more smoothly from there.

But if I get up late, or haven’t taken time to organise myself, not only can they feel my stress and haste, but I just don’t have the time or space to re-connect like this.  And that’s when I find things can get very messy, very stressy, and a pretty rubbish way for everyone to start the day.

For me, getting up early has also been a way to get some consistent and vital me-time.  It’s often the only time of the day I have to myself and I absolutely treasure it now.

I have never previously been a morning person.  Never.  Always a night owl.   But I happened to come across Hal Elrod’s ‘Miracle Morning’ and was inspired to give it a go (you can find his books on Amazon and he also has a very large and active Miracle Morning Mums Fb group).

The early starts were a struggle for a couple of weeks but the benefits became apparent pretty quickly and I was soon hooked.  Hal advocates a very structured early morning routine including six elements (exercise, silence, reading etc.) but I’ve gradually adapted this to suit my own preferences.

To be honest though, just getting up and having time to get yourself ready before the rest of the house is up makes all the difference in the world.  And if you also have some time to get a few chores done too, you’ll be laughing your way through the rest of the morning.

HI! I'M DR. NICOLA FARR

HI! I'M DR. NICOLA FARR

I'm a mama of 3 and a parenting coach specialising in picky eating and mealtime stress.

I'm passionate about inspiring parents to enjoy mealtimes & help their children develop a healthy long-term relationship with food.

See here for the services I offer or email me for more info.  You can also find me on Facebook and Instagram.

FUSSY EATER MYTH #5: YOU KNOW EXACTLY HOW MUCH YOUR CHILD NEEDS TO EAT

It's true that we have an incredible understanding now of what is required nutritionally-speaking for optimum health. But there is concern amongst many health professionals that parents are frequently vastly over-estimating the amount of food children can and/or need...
Read More

WANT LESS STRESSFUL MEALTIMES? WANT TO STOP WORRYING ABOUT YOUR FUSSY EATER?

(This article was originally posted on the Mother Tribe blog on 22.04.17) A doctorate in child development and years of working with children and families did not prepare me for the sheer frustration and stress of feeding my own family. Three different children with...
Read More

FUSSY EATER MYTH #4: CHILDREN REFUSE TO TRY NEW FOODS BECAUSE THEY ARE STUBBORN OR ‘TESTING’ BOUNDARIES

Without doubt children have very different personalities and some are much more on the feisty end of the scale than others, but this is NOT directly related to refusing to try or eat a particular food.  Passive, laid back children can be just as fussy when it comes to...
Read More

FLEXIBILITY IS ONE OF YOUR BEST MEALTIME FRIENDS

I remember reading something a while ago along the lines of, whenever you think you know or understand something always leave a space next to it in your brain for new information.  I’ve probably totally trashed a beautiful quote there and unfortunately, I have...
Read More

FUSSY EATER MYTH #3: YOU NEED TO MAKE FOOD MORE EXCITING & TRY SPECIAL RECIPES

You've seen these websites and resources, right? The ones that are aimed at helping you with your fussy eater that focus predominantly on recipes...recipes that even the fussiest of fussy eaters are allegedly 'guaranteed' to eat. Except even after you spend ages...
Read More

TEMPERAMENT & FUSSY EATING: IS YOUR CHILD A ‘SUPERTASTER’?

DO YOU HAVE A PICKY EATER?  DO YOU SOMETIMES BLAME  YOURSELF FOR YOUR CHILD'S FUSSY EATING? Please don't. I know it can sometimes seem like everyone else's children eat everything and yours just won’t. But it's really not true - limited food choice is extremely common...
Read More

FUSSY EATER MYTH #2: FUSSINESS STARTS AT AROUND 12-MONTHS-OLD AS BABY BECOMES MORE WILFUL

Well, it is certainly true that it is frequently around about this age that parents start to regret having told everyone that their child loves food and is such a ‘good’ eater. Very often it can seem like overnight they go from eating everything in sight to refusing...
Read More

WHAT’S MAKING YOUR CHILD ‘FUSSY’ WITH FOOD?

The trouble with many articles offering expert opinions about fussy eating and mealtime stress is that they tend to offer a couple of generic, one-sized fits all ‘solutions’ and fail to take into account that there are many different types of ‘fussy eater’ and quite a...
Read More

FUSSY EATER MYTH #1: YOUR CHILD MUST EAT A RAINBOW COLOURED PLATE AT EVERY MEAL

If you present your child with a beautifully colourful, perfectly balanced plate of food at every meal and they willingly gobble it all down - wow, consider yourself extremely blessed! But if not, try not to sweat it. This is very common for all children, not just the...
Read More

WEANING YOUR BABY: 4 ESSENTIAL TRUTHS FOR LONG TERM FUSS-FREE EATING

(This article was originally posted on at http://mammainpearls.com/weaning-your-baby/ on 03.04.17) Very often when it’s time to take the exciting leap to the weaning stage, our focus is so much on the present that we forget to think about the longer-term eating...
Read More

HERE’S HOW MANY EASTER EGGS I LET MY KIDS EAT..

When you SPECIFICALLY request a trusted relative NOT to buy chocolate for your kids for Easter (but a small inedible present instead)...and they do it anyway. And not even a small one; a very large, indulgent-looking one each. THIS I find mega frustrating. And...
Read More

INSISTING ON ‘TASTING’ IS NOT THE ANSWER TO PICKY EATING

Imagine that you popped over to my house for a cuppa and I put a plate of snacks in front of you. And then instead of saying, "Here, help yourself!" I said, "Look at this yummy food I've got for you, try it! Have some! Just one little bite, go on, I'll give you a...
Read More

WHEN THEY DON’T EAT WHAT YOU KNOW THEY LIKE…

"But you LOVE chicken and rice! Here, have some chicken and rice!" "Don't like chicken and rice." "Yes you DO, you ate a whole bowlful the other day!" Do you ever find yourself having this sort of crazy-making conversation with your toddler or child? You kind of know...
Read More

MY JOURNEY TO FUSS-FREE EATING

I think even as a very young child I knew deep down that being ‘forced’ to eat and rigid mealtime rules just weren't right. I remember sitting at the dining table feeling so confused; I wasn't particular hungry, I'd eaten all the ‘nice’ bits on my plate, and just the...
Read More

HOW TO HANDLE “I HATE YOU MUMMY!”

Hearing these words for the first time from your sweet, innocent ‘baby’ is pretty gutting really.
I had asked my 7-year-old to start tidying away the Lego as it was bedtime soon, and he replied, “No Mummy, I’m still building this.” I could hear he was fairly cross and passionate, and so thinking I was being quite reasonable, I said,

Read More

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