As Megan jumped into the minivan after school today, she proudly displayed the reward she earned for being good all week. I was less enthusiastic about the candy than she had hoped. Infact, I have to be honest and say I'm a little disappointed in the fact that her teacher (who I absolutely adore) had this tiny lapse in judgement to give candy to a 4 year old.
With only 14.3 grams of sugar and every artificial color possible, this treat turned out to be a recipe for disaster at our house.
I'm trying to help the kids make healthy choices, not make the choices for them. Megan chose to try the candy. She didn't quite like it, so she gave it over to Joshua. Notice the blue food coloring. Joshua doesn't get along with blue food coloring, it makes him break out in hives and wheeze. I wasn't aware that Megan was sharing her candy with her brother since they were eating at the kitchen table and I was running around the house gathering up laundry. I see a few problems - I need to be present when the kids are eating, and I need to find more ways to make non-food rewards more exciting than the candy that the kids are getting at school. Infact, I'd love to do away with rewards all together and focus my energy on teaching them about the intrinsic rewards that come along with doing the right thing.
And incidently, Keith wanted pizza tonight for dinner, so I ordered from a local mom and pop shop instead of a chain resteraunt. I went with a thinner crust and light on the cheese. Nobody seemed to notice. Have I mentioned how often we eat out (or order take-out)? Too much! My goal for the remainder of September is to only eat out (or take out) once a week. Do we eat out more than the normal family?