Wow! I did not realise that I had this in my drafts folder for the longest time! It was meant to be an all photos post, but now I’ve added in a little introduction 😀 You can also read more about my thoughts on eating and mealtimes in my previous post here. **************************** Scout has always been a pretty good eater, she started off on cereals at 6-7 months, and then kind of lost interest, or maybe she was just trying to tell me something, until she started on rice at 9 months. She completely skipped the porridge phase, although today that’s one of the things she loves. So since she was already on rice (usually doused with soup of course) at 9 months, there was really no need for me to bring any homecooked food for her when we went out, since there was usually rice and other condiments. And if she wasn’t interested in anything, well there was always milk. I don’t sweat it if one or two meals are skipped because they’re not feeling it. We love eating, and I think eating is one of the joys of living. When I was pregnant with Scout, I had absolutely NO APPETITE in the first trimester, and could only eat about one-third or half of the portions I usually do. It was THE END OF THE WORLD! What was the point of living if you can’t enjoy food?? Ok maybe that’s being a little dramatic, but I’ve always been quite willing to let my kids try “outside” food at an appropriate age (although I frown on doritos for a 6 month old, tyvm MIL). At home we eat simply, with as little MSG as possible, so I think a little outside food on occasion never did anyone harm. It also makes it much easier when I’m out alone with the three kids, if they are interested and willing to feed themselves. Of course if the husband around my job is much easier! Recently my friend told me of her friends who never let their kids eat fast food, and will even go to the extent of eating french fries IN FRONT OF THE KIDS and proclaiming it was horrible. Sorry, I really can’t agree with that, because WHO DOESN’T LIKE FRENCH FRIES?? And isn’t it lying to your kids? Would it really kill them to have it once in a few months? I’m pretty sure that when those kids do finally get to taste the forbidden fruit, the flood gates will probably open and they might be at MacD’s every other night or something. I’ve heard and know of several cases of toddlers who aren’t exposed to much outside food past 18, 24 months, and they end up quite uninterested in food in general. Who can blame them if they’ve been eating the same stuff for so long? (Of course some kids are just more picky than others, I have both good eaters and picky eaters!) I also think that letting them try a variety of foods once they are able to (no allergies dangers) is an important step in weaning and enjoying life, especially when you can enjoy food together as a family. That excitement in their eyes when they see the food they like, or when they’re completely engrossed in eating their favourite dish, is really one of life’s most simple joys as a parent.