Being the ginormous food hog foodie that I am, I have always been very proud of the wide variety of food that Jr enjoys.
Until recently, that is.
If 4 years old was “the age of the questionable decision” (and oh, how it was,) then 5 is turning out to be “the age of the shrinking palate.”
Jr’s newest meal time battle cry has become “I don’t like that anymore.”
And people, let me tell you right now – mama ain’t down with it one damn bit.
After Jr tried to declare that carrots and broccoli (our last two approved true veggies) were now on his “do not eat list,” I went so far as to implement a “if you liked it when you were 3, you can’t unlike it now!” (Sorry, dude, but if 3 year old you would easily have eaten it, 5 year old you has to eat it too. Because hashtag momlogic.)
Even with my MOTY rule in place, dinner time is substantially more hellish eventful than it used to be.
Case in point, last night’s dinner… or as I immediately took to calling it “The Corn Dog Shit Show.”
I gave Jr a prompt Heisman pose on his attempt to decide that he no longer liked the Morning Star Farms Corn Dogs that he loved as a 4 year old – because evidently vegan junk food is the hill that this mama decided was worth dying on. Go figure.
Anyway, it worked and the kid decided that they were not only cleared for serving again, but actually his new-again favorite thing ever. So for dinner last night when I offered a Corn dog instead of the low carb Cheeseburger casserole thingy that The Mr. and I were having, his agreement was a level 2000 on a scale of 1-10.
Perfect, awesome, fantastic. 1 corndog, some grapes, and a yogurt tube (Simply Yo-plait ONLY, as he has decided that the Horizons tubes no longer meet his refined tastes,) coming up.
Except I wasn’t watching…. And if you overcook a vegan corndog, it blows up.
:::pause to de-corndog microwave:::
Round two is a success, and after a play session with the neighbor kid and a bike ride with dad, he was HUNGRY!
A corndog requires a 5-7 minute cooling time, which can be sped up by sticking the cooked dog back into the freezer. Skip this step and Jr’s delicious dinner becomes a molten mass of meat substitute lying in wait to scorch the taste buds off my offspring’s tender tongue.
All steps accomplished and we all sit down to din.
A third of the way through said perfectly cooled corndog, Jr decides to attempt to remove it from the stick, and half a blink later, it is on the floor, Potter has promptly wolfed it down, and Jr is has that pre-tantrum quiver in his lip.
I distract him with the yogurt tube and launch into emergency corndog prep procedure, cooking for 10 seconds, checking the temp, and going again – so as to produce a replacement that will be cool enough to eat PDQ, but not still a veggie-product popsicle in the center.
Just as the last grape goes into Jr’s mouth, I sidle up beside him and hold out my microwaved creation, at the perfect temperature for instant ingestion. Mom achievement unlocked.
The pride I took in this victory was far greater than any I ever felt in a kitchen – even when I made perfect puff pastry from scratch to ace my dreaded baking exam in culinary school.
We also had a quick lesson in pointing our corndog DOWN toward the plate if we are shoving it off of the stick, instead of pointing it up and firing it off of the stick like a cornbread-wrapped pop-bottle rocket.
One mealtime battle fought and won…. One food saved from 5 year old snubbery. (Is that a word? I am making it one. I am the MF-ing corndog god… I can do that.)