Tuesday, June 5, 2007


I'm not a food Nazi or anything, but I'm pretty conscious of the nutritional content of what my kids eat--I don't let Ella drink a lot of juice or eat those gummy fruit snack things because of the sugar, I try to go with fresh vegetables instead of canned, stuff like that. Some days I'm more diligent about it than others--It's all quite arbitrary, actually. This story caught me on a day that I cared.

Yesterday I spent about ten minutes in the snack aisle of the grocery store trying to choose a box of crackers based on the amount of protein they have (these are crackers we're talking about here-the leader had a whopping 4 grams) and their fat and sodium content. Triscuits and Ritz only had 6% Daily Value of sodium to Cheez-It's 15%, but the Cheez-Its had 4g of protein to Triscuit's 3 and Ritz's 1. Grams of fat ranged from 2-4. Oh, what to do, what to do??? I realize now (and I think I did then, as well) just how absurd my cracker conundrum was, but right then I needed to get those junky crackers right. My competency as a mother depended on it. In the end I heeded the call of the "100% Whole Grain" banner that was blazed across the front of the Triscuits box.

An hour after the Great Cracker Indecision of 2007, we headed over to a Mexican joint to meet some friends for dinner. As soon as we got to the table, Ella zeroed in on the sugar packets and had a package of sweet n' low in her hands before my rear end even hit my seat. "Open this for me, please Mommy," she pleaded. I certainly wasn't about to let her eat a pouch of granulated saccharin after putting back the Ritz, but I needed her to try to go potty before dinner and that wasn't going to happen if we had a sugar fight before hand, so I went for the compromise and told her she could have the white one (good old Dixie Crystals) after she went potty. Yes sir, giving my kid the white packet instead of the pink would get me nominated for Mom-of-the-Year for sure. We had a deal. Ella got right down to business when we got to the ladies' room, and I applauded her effort. "Can I have my sugar now, Mommy?" It sounded ridiculous coming out of her mouth, but I'm a mom of my word, so I had to tell her that yes, she could have her packet of sugar when we got back to the table. As we headed back to our table, which was on the other end of the restaurant from the bathrooms, Ella told pretty much everyone she saw that she went potty so she got to have her sugar now. By the time we got back to the table she had gotten herself all worked up over the promised sugar packet. As soon as I opened it she dumped the contents out into the palm of her hand. Our friends showed up just as she was doing so, and she proudly showed them her fist full of her reward. "Look, I'm having my sugar!" she announced as she started licking it out of her palm. Oh well, at least her crackers only had 160mg of sodium.


  1. That is hilarious. I am the same way, I often try and care what goes in Clara's mouth (for example, she has no idea what juice is yet) but at the end of the day, when I am exhausted, she could basically eat whatever she wants as long as it gives me some peace and quiet. Though right now we have her pretty much convinced that the ice cream man is actually a white school bus...

  2. Way to go Ame! Your nomination for Mother of the Year is "in the mail"-