I will not ever never eat…

I wouldn’t label the twins fussy eaters – they eat a pretty well-balanced diet. But they’re toddlers, and they definitely have very strong opinions about what they will and won’t put in their mouths (and have had since they were first weaned). More often than not, these decisions seem to be based on a passing mood, rather than the actual taste – something that I’m sure frustrates other parents just as much as myself when you just KNOW if they put that piece of food in their mouth they would definitely like it, but caught at just the wrong moment, they refuse it and lodge it in their memory as one of the foods the don’t eat.

“I don’ eat that” is a favourite refrain of Ez’s and she’s seldom persuaded to give something a go once she’s made up her mind. I don’t ever stop offering these foods (most of them are Fonz’s favourites – is there something in that?), but I’ve given up expecting her to change her mind and give them a try.

For their birthday in September, we gave the twins a couple of Charlie & Lola books, as they are avid fans of the cartoon. The books lay untouched for a while but were recently rediscovered, and I will not ever never eat a tomato has become a firm bedtime favourite. In it, Lola lists the foods she will not eat, and Ez loves to go through the list, pledging her agreement or disagreement with Lola’s choices. Lola is persuaded to try a few of the foods she won’t eat by her big brother Charlie, who tricks her by telling her they’re something else entirely, and so peas become green drops from Greenland, carrots become orange twiglets from Jupiter and mash becomes cloud fluff from the pointiest peak of Mount Fuji, among others.

This evening Esme ate peas, one of her “I don’ like that” foods, after we joked that they were green drops from Greenland. Then she tucked into a mushroom, another “I don’ like that” food. Earlier this week she’s eaten chocolate, cheese and pizza – again all off her “I don’ like that” list.

It’s as if a switch has flicked and she’s willing to give things a go. I don’t know if it has anything to do with the Charlie & Lola story, or it’s just an age thing, but something seems to have clicked and it’s brilliant to see. Of course I won’t place any large bets that it’ll continue, but I’ll enjoy it while it lasts…

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