Gosh, I never imagined how challenging it would be to figure out what a toddler should eat. In theory, they should eat like any other person; a nice balance of fruit, vegetables, protein, etc. But man, it’s actually quite a struggle!
When babies are little, it’s so simple. It’s either breast milk or formula (or some combo of the two). Then when they start solids, it’s still pretty easy. Try one new food at a time, make sure there’s no allergy issue, and then try a new food. But when babies become toddlers and start eating more “regular” food, the game changes again. I still haven’t figured out this game yet.
My daughter is healthy and growing well, but I feel like I’m behind the eight ball on figuring out her perfect meals. She really likes a few things, and those things have become the staples. She’s really into dairy (especially cheese), chicken, eggs, and some fruits. She likes peas, green beans, and carrots too. So while she’s eating valuable foods, I never feel like it’s a “perfect” meal.
I often see moms who seem to have it all together at meal time. They have these perfectly prepared plates with tiny, balanced meals, and I can’t figure out how they do it! The toddlers also seem to be eating totally different things than the parents, often much “cleaner” than their parents. It seems like these people are making two meals, which is pretty amazing. I’m not domestic at all and am pretty terrible at cooking (thank goodness my husband can/will cook!). We somehow manage to get something together for dinner (thank you, Publix, for your prepped chicken and pre-cut vegetables!), and my daughter will eat whatever we eat for dinner, but she never has a beautifully displayed plate worthy of a picture on social media.
My daughter eats when/how much she wants. She has a pretty regular eating schedule, but like any other person, there are times when she’s not super hungry, and times when she wants to eat and eat and eat! As long as she’s eating and growing like she should, I’m fine with that. We’ll never be a family that requires her to eat everything on her plate, or a family that always eats at the same time everyday. I’ll never be a Pinterest-perfet mom, but I’m doing the best that I can. As long as she’s eating a good variety of foods and she’s healthy, then that works for me!