Weekend Adventures

August 23, 2010 · 4 comments

We’ve had a good if a bit odd weekend. We had alarms going off down the road in the middle of the night due to the rain, which kept us up for ages!.

However the highlight for me was getting Miss L to eat something other than blessed jacket potato and cheese for a main meal.  With Karen Pine’s advice ringing in my ears, to introduce new things in a fun way we decided to take Miss L to Jamie Oliver’s Italian restaurant in Cambridge.  Miss L loves Jamie Oliver and records his cookery shows, so I thought it might be fun for her to go to one of his resturants.  It sounds far fancier than it is, the prices are very much like Pizza Express/Prezzo, which I was surprised at, but aimed at the right market.

The restaurant is child friendly, and they are made very welcome. There was colouring, unlimited cordial, which I may have drunk a lot of as it was lush and how cool is this?  The kids menu was on a view finder!

There were pictures of the food and a number on each one so the children could easily choose.  Miss L chose a pasta dish and salad, Paul and I looked at each other and where we normally would have said ‘Are you sure?’, ‘Will you eat it?’ we said nothing and choose ours. We were both nervous as she’s ordered so much food over the years that she’s barely touched, but we ignored it as Karen suggested.

Here’s the inside of the restaurant and my yummy bruschetta, which frankly was a meal in itself:

The starters came quickly, the bruchetta above and Paul had a selection of Italian breads with olive oil and balsalmic vinegar dip. You know what, Miss L asked to try both and then promptly ate most of Paul’s bread and about half of one of my bruschetta’s!  She really enjoyed all the new tastes and asked lots of questions about where the food came from and what was in it. Then when the main courses came, she was really excited and a whole bowl of pasta – which hasn’t happened in about a year without an argument.   Taking Karen’s advice we didn’t praise, just let her get on with it and she also had a nibble on the salad too.

You can image how delighted we were!  She was so enthusiastic and wanted to cook some Italian food at home for Sunday lunch the next day. She thought about it and the next day had an idea for a recipe. Luckily I always have a ton of Italian staples in the cupboard so we could make it without much hassle.

So she made a pasta sauce from tin of tomato’s, tomato paste, 1 red onion, 2 slices of bacon, 2 cloves of garlic, basil,  olive oil served with pasta.  A green salad with mozzerella and added some shop bought Italian bread with an olive oil/balsalmic dip. All her idea with a bit of chopping onion and turning on the hob help from me, other than that she did it all.

I’m so proud of her, she had such great ideas and carried them out so well.  I’ve realised that she’s not a baby anymore and shoving food infront of her with no input from her has been causing all the problems we’ve been having with food refusal and control issues.  So from now on I’m going to make sure she has an input and can help me more with preparation, which she’s really looking forward to.  So thanks to Karen Pine and Jamie Oliver to getting us here and making us all think differently about food in our house.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Sam August 23, 2010 at 11:03 am

That’s really interesting Liz. I have a pretty fussy eater, who refuses to try food which is new and unfamiliar, so I tend to dish up the same ‘safe’ food most days. Last week we were on holiday and ate out every day. She chose what she wanted and ate pretty well (although sausages *did* feature pretty highly!). But I like the idea of not questioning and not praising – it’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking this is a good thing, but maybe praise (and the attention that generates) does just add to the problem.

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Liz August 23, 2010 at 1:29 pm

I really think it does and I didn’t even realise I was doing it until it was pointed out to me that I might be. But it’s worth trying and preserving with for a while.

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TheMadHouse August 23, 2010 at 11:28 am

Wow way to go Lilly. I have been very lucky with the boys, but try not to be smug, as I have no idea how long it will last. The Jamie restaurant sounds just perfect for a family meal
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Liz August 23, 2010 at 1:30 pm

Thanks Jen :) You are so lucky! xx

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