My Kids Eat Goldfish And Watch TV And Are Just As Smart As Yours

My kids eat goldfishBefore I was a parent, I swore I would never do certain things. My child would never misbehave in public, never eat hot dogs, never run around with a snotty nose, etc. The only thing I’ve been steadfast about is chasing them around to wipe their nose. And our hot dogs are organic and nitrate free, so I feel slightly better about that. Misbehaving, well, they are kids. I don’t let them act a fool and correct them, but sometimes there are meltdowns. That was a bit misguided thinking pre-kids.

We watch TV in our house

Television wasn’t ever a hot button for me. I actually didn’t know many parents didn’t allow it until after I had my first. I recall learning from Sesame Street as a kid so it never occurred to me prevent my kids from watching. I’ll even admit there are times I’ve resorted to the TV or iPad to get things done. Sue me. If you’ve ever worked from home, you can especially relate. However, I’ve actually seen progress from my boys watching Sight Words and lessons learned from Veggie Tales. We, of course, read and play and engage them in other activities as well. And I’m okay with all of it.

Foodie mom raises picky son

french friesWhen it came to food, my oldest son decided he was going to detest nearly every food around 18 months. Breastfeeding didn’t last as long as I hoped, so I made all his food (same situation with my second son) as a baby. It made me feel like something was still in my control, and I enjoyed preparing meals for him. He ate everything from spinach to chicken to avocado, you name it. Then one day, he just quit. I tried everything to combat it. We continue to present him with new foods, encouraging him to try them. We vary color on the plate, make it look like a face…to no avail. So here I am, making green ‘hulk’ smoothies, buying organic hot dogs and chicken nuggets, and making quesadillas I’ll manage one bite of a strawberry and that’s it. And he acts like it nearly killed him. My youngest, on the other hand, loves most everything. He was a better eater from day one. And I did nothing different. <bang head on table>

The kids are alright

11150161_10104482057737395_2145268921355593042_nDespite what some might view as shortcomings, I see my oldest excelling. Teachers have told us how well spoken he is and that he uses critical thinking skills. I see his vocabulary expanding all the time, even asking me to explain his “options for snack choices” at the age of 4. My youngest doesn’t really watch tv yet and eats a better diet, but I do allow him other snacks like goldfish and Cheerios. I find his speech is above what his brother’s was, already putting together sentences at 15 months. Now, of course, I don’t think my children to be geniuses, but it perturbs me to hear how things like TV and certain snacks are going to setback my children. And it’s not coming from my pediatrician. My pediatrician even said not to worry about his diet, supplement him with a vitamin and he will grow out of it eventually. One of my cousins was immensely picky, way more than my son. She’s now in high school, making all A’s and aspires to work at the Library of Congress. And <gasp> she was a formula fed baby.

We can do or not do all these things, and at the end of the day, it’s just about doing our best. Breast or bottle, Gerber or homemade organic, veggies or hot dogs. Your best is what’s best for your child.

What is your parenting style? Do you allow TV and snack foods?


  1. I remember about four years ago when my best friend had her first child and she told me that kids under the age of two were not supposed to watch tv. I had no idea. I remember asking my mom if she ever put me in front of the tv and her answer: “Every chance I got.” She said, “Just wait until you need to take a shower or get anything done. You’ll be putting your child in front of the tv too.” Now, I’m pregnant with my first and my mother’s words are in the back of my mind. While my husband and i will try to keep tv time to an absolute minimum, I’m sure there will be times when we use it. And just like my own mom, I won’t feel guilty about it.


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