Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The #Secret to nutritional goodness

I was invited to a party yesterday. Okay, so it was only a Twitter party; but, hey, I don't get out much. It's on Thursday from 1pm to 2pm and if I'm being honest, I shouldn't brag about the invitation because anyone can come. The party theme is getting kids to eat properly and all you have to do is use the hashtag #secret goodness and you're away. Oh, plus share a few of your concerns/tips in the nutrition department.

It's being sponsored by Kingsmill, which in my mind is synonymous with white sliced bread so doesn't exactly fit my eating agenda, but I guess those slices also come in brown. (I'll gloss over the fact that the loaves also come pumped with god knows what so they last forever in your bread bin.) And, let's face it, bread is pretty handy when you've got to feed a child in a hurry. Where would the world be without sandwiches?

Food is something I think about a lot, whether it's me or Louis who is doing the eating. Somehow we've lucked out because for a two year old, Louis is a pretty fantastic eater. (I've always figured it makes up for his ineptitude in the sleeping department.) Whether it's luck or by design, he's always had a pretty adventurous palate and a hearty appetite. Okay, so he likes cake and chocolate as much as the next toddler, even though I never intended to let him know what they were! But he'll chow down lentils for dinner and a pear for pudding happily enough.

He's always wanted what we're eating (which forces me to do a lot of surreptitious chocolate munching) and recently that means he's developing a taste for some serious heat. Spice heat, not temperature. It all started when we told him he wouldn't like Daddy J's stir fry because it was too spicy. "I like spicy," came the reply, so we let him at it. The upshot was lunch on Monday at a fabulous Japanese noodles house, Koya, in Soho. After polishing off the noodles I'd hived off from my dish for him, he demanded first DJ's curried version, and then more of mine, which by now came with additional zing. Did it put him off? On the contrary, and there's photographic evidence to prove it.

Which I think all goes to show that sometimes children might eat more than their parents anticipate, greens and all.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Mea culpa: or what happens when someone reads what you've written

Odd thing, blogging: one minute it's just you, your sofa and a keyboard; the next someone half way round the world has read what you've written. Which shouldn't surprise me; after all, I make a (so-called) living writing for a national newspaper. And yet, when I got pulled up for something I'd written on bwb some months ago, it came as rather a shock to know I actually did have followers. Especially when it turned out they were somewhat closer to home than California.

So close to home, in fact, that the something I got taken to task about concerned Louis' nursery and some somewhat glib remarks I'd made about the torture that was leaving him there. (And when I say *torture*, I don't actually mean torture in a strict thumbscrew sense on the offchance I offend the same follower again; I'm exaggerating for something I believe is called poetic license, not that I'm claiming to be a poet.) Turns out, someone who knew Louis, read this blog, and, I'm guessing, knew of me, was so *worried* about me after reading a couple of my posts that instead of asking if I was okay, she - and apparently it was another mum - thought it best to show the offending posts to the head of the nursery because clearly they "had a real problem". Not with Louis; with me.

Never mind that this all blew up just as he was (finally) truly settling in. Or that it made me feel terrible, because inevitably the nursery then worried that I thought badly of them, when nothing could have been further from the truth. The only thing I felt bad about was me for dumping him there, which is a working mother's prerogative, after all. The one constant about Louis' nursery was how lovely the staff are, yet my throwaway remarks had made them feel bad. And me feel even worse.

Which I explain not for want of having something to blog about, but partly as a mea culpa for the original comments but also by way of explanation (if anyone was curious) as to why it's been nearly three months (three months?? where does time go) since I've last written a post. And for the record, an older and wiser Louis is loving nursery right now, which I'd love to report helps to ease that maternal guilt, but I'm not sure it does.