Before & After Lunchboxes

Love It, Like It, Learning It Lunchbox:

LOVE IT FOODS: watermelon cubes, Annie's cheese squares, smoked salmon

LIKE IT FOODS: baby carrots

LEARNING IT FOODS: quartered grapes, kidney beans


Before & After Images:

Observations of an Apprehensive Eater:

Who knew? Today, she ate these colossal grapes in quarters! 

My favorite part of this meal though is what a smoked salmon eater she is. I don't know how it started, but one day she asked for a bite of my open-faced salmon sandwich and we've never looked back. We go through about a pound of this smoked salmon a week now, which I always find at Costco. It has transformed our meal times to have this as a new, nutrient-dense option for meal times! Whether it be a quick, thrown together dinner or an easy protein to pack in her lunch, this is a food I am so glad our daughter has learned to love!

I often wonder though how many people stumble upon one of our #loveitlikeitlearningit lunchboxes and roll their eyes to see "smoked salmon" in a toddler's lunchbox. I mean, it does sound rather "dietitian of me" to give that to my daughter for lunch -- doesn't it? I don't doubt that it may to anyone except those of you who are frequent visitors to my Instagram or subscribers to my site. You know better than to think I have something to boast about, because you have seen all the MANY struggles of uneaten foods we have sacrificed for those few and far between small victories of smoked salmons or quartered grapes.

It takes a lot, A LOT of small yet intentional steps to get an apprehensive eater to eat "new," unfamiliar, and seemingly surprising foods for their age and feeding stage. But let this be a testament that repeated exposure, role modeling, and reliable offering of variety will work its magic in its due time. My smoked-salmon-eating two year old is here to tell you so!