10 Facts on Feeding Young Kids

Remember when food was that stuff you consumed when you were hungry? Me neither. Somehow parenting changes that. Gone are the days of cooking one meal that everyone will eat and consuming food that is actually warm….

Boy Making Peanut Butter Sandwich

1. Everything is stage. It will pass. Just like that penny your baby ingested.

2. On long trips, let your children eat whatever processed crap you can get your hands on.

3. If you count ketchup as a fruit or vegetable, it’s likely your child is eating a balanced diet.

4. Never tell your child that the ice cream truck sells ice cream. Tell them it sells vegetables.

5. If it’s 6 PM and you have not made supper, declare it “Backwards Day” and serve breakfast for dinner. Limit this to 6x per week.

6. Keep an emergency vegetable tray in the fridge. If other parents visit your home, pull it out and appear responsible.

7. Eating your child’s Halloween candy is akin to martyrdom: it saves your kids the pain and humiliation of cavities.

8. Look for opportunities to practice your child’s literacy skills. Buying food with unrecognizable ingredients aids this educational pursuit.

9. Teaching toddlers to smuggle candy into movie theatres is the first step towards teaching them to become financially independent.

10. Realizing that “meal” stands for “Mommy Eats, Always Last” will help you become accustomed to choking down cold food.

About the writer


Leanne Shirtliffe, of IronicMom.com, is the author of DON'T LICK THE MINIVAN: Things I Never Thought I'd Say to My Kids. She’s also the mother of tween twins, a phrase that’s hard to say after two glasses of wine. When she’s not wasting brain cells tweeting @LShirtliffe, she teaches teens who are slightly less hormonal than she is. She lives in Calgary because she likes complaining about the weather.


Tricia 11 months ago

#4, ice cream truck: we told our kids that when the truck was playing the ice cream truck song it meant that they were all out of ice cream! This bought us a few years.
I also told them that the candy at the grocery store checkout line wasn’t for kids, it’s dog treats!

TF 1 year ago

I hear number 10 loud and clear,but she forgot that last means finishing the kids leftovers lol

Hillary 2 years ago

Just because they asked for chicken 2 hours ago, doesn’t mean that 2 hours wasn’t ample time to decide that chicken is actually gross.

Heather Davidson 2 years ago

Love that and I’m stealing it :-)

Heather Davidson 2 years ago

#5 is breakner and a beloved back up plan and #6 is genius.

Marta Milea 2 years ago

lol, I love #10 – so true

Nicole Slaughter 2 years ago

#10 in my house, every darn TIME!!!

Sarah Mazur 2 years ago

This isn’t sarcasm. It’s real life!

Katie Barnes Webb 2 years ago

The Halloween candy one. LOL

Stephanie Rogers 2 years ago

#9, exactly! LOL And Ice cream truck wants to come before each meal. WHY?

Jennifer Denson Black 2 years ago

This article is absolutely stupid!

Sallie Lewis Fulmer 2 years ago

I am to tired to read right now! But I am def reading this!

Rossella Frascoli 2 years ago

Of course ketchup counts as vegetable… exactly like nutella counts as fruit!!! :-)

Marian Randall 2 years ago

Love this!

Lindsey Sylvester 2 years ago

It sounds like a lot of people are okay with feeding their kids unhealthy meals on a regular basis. I get the occasional Mac n cheese but seriously many of these posts talk about the most unhealthy foods. It’s disheartening as a full time working mother I try to feed my kid organic, healthy options and give her choices if she’s not into what I made. I’d rather her be healthy and have me struggle to find something she’ll eat rather than eating food laced with dyes and chemicals.

Alexandra Palka 2 years ago


Stephanie Pucci 2 years ago

And each kid gets a “pass” on one meal, but one meal only. I will make them something separate for that meal. If they don’t at least attempt to eat whatever I give them, they go to bed, so I can usually shove at least half a meal in them before I give up

Stephanie Pucci 2 years ago

I’ve learned to eat while finishing dinner/dishing up the kids. Then I can eat something hot. Sometimes I sit down with a plate too, just for fun since I don’t usually get to finish it, I just want the kids to see me “finishing” my food lol

Kimberley Smith 2 years ago

A friend of mine tells her child that if the ice cream truck is playing music it means they’re out of icecream! 😉

mowammee 2 years ago

Just beware the pennies. The newer ones contain zinc which when mixed with the stomach acids causes holes to form in the stomach/intestines which lead to death.

Shannon Doran 2 years ago

Lol #3

Karen Jean 2 years ago


Fran Munster 2 years ago

Definitely #10!!

Melissa Iaconelli 2 years ago

Love #10!

Alison Soltau 2 years ago

At least the dogs are getting well fed. They sit like sphinx under my 20-month-old’s high chair waiting for the inevitable plate throwing. Before he does that he psychs them out a few times by pretending to drop stuff and pulling it away at the last minute.

Sarah Almeida 2 years ago

Lol #9

LOri Dumm 2 years ago


Anne Marie Lynne Mattockz 2 years ago

Lol number 3 was my house for 2 freaking years!!!

Alison Huitt Vega 2 years ago

Made me think of you Kelly. Not that’s it’s going to help with Ky.

    Kelly Jordan 2 years ago

    Thanks Al!!! She has always been in the 90+ percentile. I didnt know what the ice cream truck was for YEARS!!

    Alison Huitt Vega 2 years ago

    Some of the reply that other mom’s write are kinda funny.

Maria Schumacher 2 years ago

#5 last week, #10 at every meal!

Jamie Irwin 2 years ago

I’m all for #9. Dollar store run he we come!

Magalie Franco 2 years ago

#1 to #10

Jamie Riccio 2 years ago

Ah, so true…

Susan Bussey Stowe 2 years ago

Uber proficient in sarcasm…criteria for profession :)

Whitney Prieto 2 years ago

Number 10 has been me the last couple dinner times. Lol

Jennifer A. Koschnick 2 years ago

Number 10 so true

Shaleshni Chambers 2 years ago

Number 10

Shailyn Volk 2 years ago

Hilarious ha

Danielle Kinahan Christie 2 years ago

Hahaha so true!

Summer Ford 2 years ago

The pennies don’t always come out…sometimes they have to be surgically removed…just an fyi lol

Lisa Briscoe 2 years ago

I’m so looking forward to #7 in a few weeks!!

Nabila Habib 2 years ago

Totally practice number seven! :-)

Jenny Gray Hough 2 years ago

#9 makes perfect sense to me.

Mel Frausto 2 years ago

You have never experienced motherhood until you have hidden a chocolate bar on your jewelry box ^^

Ginny Schultz Vandenburg 2 years ago

Ha! I don’t even get a hot meal when we go out to eat. By the time I have the kids’ meals cut up, ketchupped, offending pickles removed from plates, etc., my own meal is lukewarm at best. Honestly I’m so used to it now that I genuinely don’t care anymore.

Heather 2 years ago

LOVE that the comments are all Cheering! Maybe the “don’t click unless” is actually working here and keeping all of the NOT Scary Mommy Moms away!

Sarah Stovin-Menchaca 2 years ago

Love it! Especially #9. Who can afford movie tickets AND candy?!

    Jenifer Mitchell 2 years ago

    I was beginning to think I was the only one!!!

Denise 2 years ago

Number six is awesome! How did I never think of this.

Jessica Harlow 2 years ago

Here’s my tip. Eat your food before you call everyone to the dinner table. That way you get to eat hot/warm food and can still concentrate on force feeding your picky eaters.

Brandie Kennedy 2 years ago

Preston swallowed a quarter at age five…and when the radiologist asked him to be still so he could take a picture of his tummy Preston smiled and said “cheese!” Dinner that night was a a restaurant called Baskin Robbins!

Angela Roster 2 years ago

Breakfast for dinner is the best! I almost served cereal tonight when my son asked to eat something from home (guess we’ve been having takeout too much), but instead I suggested tater tots and string cheese. He said tater tots and milk. So we did that.

Brandie Kennedy 2 years ago

OMG..I could add so many things to this list!

Amy Snipes Jennings 2 years ago

My four year old swallowed a dime not long ago. He came downstairs after his nap and told me so matter of factly, like it must happen to people every day. Kids are a hoot, let me tell ya.

Diane Burke Ptacin 2 years ago

Sarcasm? This is all gospel truth!

Maeve Rhuad 2 years ago

I’m really lucky my son is a great eater. My step son’s I want to strangle. And, I always eat a hot meal. I serve everyone first. Their food gets cold while they wait for me. Ha!

Lindsey Walters Tucker 2 years ago

Love #9. And yes we have already done it:)

Krystyna Braden 2 years ago

And it’s ok if they will only eat their food after it’s fallen on the floor or into the couch. Immune system building.

My Dysfunctional Life 2 years ago

I’ve eaten more bread crust than any human should ever consume.

    Jessica Taney 2 years ago

    Same here! As I’m cutting it off their pb&j sandwich, then I consider it my lunch. Lol

Amy Brown 2 years ago

#10 sook true! And #7 is one of the reasons to take my 21 month old trick or treating!

Beth Laf 2 years ago

#10 yes yes yes

Bernadette Milone Palmese 2 years ago

10!!!! OMG 10!!!

Desiree DeLooze 2 years ago

#10? That’s me. I can’t even sit through dinner. Somebody always needs something.

Trish Mayhugh 2 years ago

My kids are all fully grown. One even has kids of his own. We NEVER had food fights. If they didn’t like what we were serving, there was always PB@J or Raisin Bran. As they will in the future all have kids of their own, I know it will pass along. NO PROBLEM!

    Adrian Pocsi Skinner 2 years ago

    That was my mom’s rule and mine.. As kids get older if they can make it they can eat it.

Tabi Mott 2 years ago

Our ice cream truck plays Rudolph the red nosed reindeer.
It’s really odd for summer

Tracy M. 2 years ago

Love this!

I told my daughter that the ice cream truck only plays music when they’re OUT of ice cream. I also told her that they didn’t sell the cereals she saw on TV in the grocery stores here in NYC. She actually bought it until she was about four and I made the mistake of taking her down the cereal aisle.

Rebecca Pletka 2 years ago

#10 I threw my son’s bday party yesterday and my food had been sitting awhile because of all the running around I had been doing and when I started eating some again my cousin asked, “you’re going to eat that now?” – umm, yea? Unless there’s a bug in it. Lol


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