Now that the triplets are 2, we can finally say we are living with 4 toddlers. They are always on the go, I feel like they never stop and they are always looking for the next thing to eat. With the amount of energy they burn when constantly running around, it’s no wonder why they eat so much!
It’s a big job to feed 4 toddlers, so I am always trying to find ways to make it easier for myself when it comes to feeding them. Everything from being picky one day with food that they would normally love, to not wanting to share with each other are almost everyday occurrences. I have to think of creative ways to make their meals fun and make sure they are actually going to eat. I think it is a great idea to try to make mealtime fun for everyone that way your kids don’t start to think it’s something they have to do, but rather something they want to do!
As you have watched many mealtimes happen through our vlogs you would have noticed that we use the Playtex® Mealtime Bowls, Plates and Utensils. They have become a key part in our mealtimes for Emily and the triplets, which is why I am excited to share my personal review on them. We are happy to be partnering with PlaytexBaby™ and to be a #PlaytexMom. PlaytexBaby™ has sponsored this post and all the views and opinions in this post are my own, from my own experiences.
I am also going to share three simple tips that I have for each meal, that I think will help to successfully survive feeding toddlers.
Over the course of the day, we generally have three meals and two to three snacks. I love to cook, so when I have the time I always like to try something different, even though most times Emily and the triplets aren’t as excited as I am. Most mornings, I usually make them eggs or something that involves eggs, such as French toast. Both meals are quick and easy to make and I know everyone will always enjoy them. Eggs are still a little difficult for them to eat on their own, but they are getting better each time. If I am being truthfully honest, I hate letting them eat eggs on their own. It never goes well and it usually ends with a big mess of scrambled eggs all over floor with barely any actually eaten!
Although I know they make a big mess with the eggs, the Playtex® Toddler Utensils have been great for helping the triplets learn how to eat with a spoon or fork. I love that the utensils have a soft, non-slip handle which makes it easy for them to hold with their little hands. I also really love that the spoon part and tongs of the fork are metal because it makes it easier to pick up food. I always found with the plastic utensils, it was hard to actually pierce a piece of food to pick up and eat.
Even when I do feed them myself, I like to use the Playtex® Toddler Utensils because they are the perfect size for their little mouths. They also help to control how big of a bite I give them, so I know I am not stuffing their mouth with too much food and preventing any choking from happening.
This leads to my TIP #1 – Keep it Simple
From what I have learned, toddlers don’t like overly complicated meals. They like what they know and that is something simple. I can’t tell you how many times I have tried to add seasonings to recipes to make it taste better or try something new to an old recipe, just to be given a look of disgust and a whole lot of wasted food. Just keep it simple and make what they know and you will have a toddler who will eat!
The second meal of the day is, of course, lunch and this one I find is probably the most difficult of the three. Breakfast is pretty good because Emily, Jackson, Olivia and Levi are hungry first thing in the morning, but lunch is in the middle of the day, in the middle of their play time and usually falls around their nap time. It can sometimes take a lot to get everyone to sit and eat, so I usually have to think of something fun. Having dishes that have a fun and colorful design on them is such a big help, which is where the Playtex® Mealtime Plates come in to play. The Playtex® Mealtime Plates have some many fun designs with bright colors that really do attract the attention of toddlers. Every time I give Emily and the triplets their plate of food they point out the different animals on the plate. It definitely helps to keep them focused on their meal and eating a little longer.
Now that Emily, Jackson, Olivia and Levi are self-feeding most of their meals, the design of the Playtex® Mealtime Plates are so great.The Playtex® Mealtime Plates edges are slanted upwards and the height of the slant is high, which helps to keep food on their plate. The rubber rims around the plates and the non-slip base on the plates is another feature I love because, as we all know, tipping and spills are pretty much inevitable with toddlers, but with the non-slip base it takes a little more before they tip the plate over. As much as I try to get everyone to sit still to eat it is virtually impossible, so to have a dish designed like the Playtex® Mealtime Plates is so helpful and saves a lot of time cleaning us a mess.
Now it’s time for TIP #2 – Be Creative
When it comes to creativity, being creative with food can be fun, but like I said in tip #1, keep it simple. When I say be creative, I am referring to how your toddler is going to eat. If you can get outside and set up a picnic style lunch or if you have a little bench or table for your kids to eat at, it sets a different scene for meal time. If it happens to be raining the day you decided to have a picnic, don’t let it stop you. Just set a blanket out on the ground and tell your toddler you are having an indoor picnic. I have done this multiple times, and we almost always have a picnic lunch!
The final meal of the day is dinner and this is where I pretty much combine everything I do during the day into one. Dinner is our biggest meal of the day and where I really have to focus on keeping things simple and keeping everyone engaged and focused on dinner. I could get away with feeding the triplets and Emily myself for breakfast, but by the time dinner comes around they want to be little independent people, so it’s better if I can make something where they can self-feed.
Depending on what I make, we either use the Playtex® Mealtime Plates or Bowls. Sometimes it can be hard to judge how much your toddler should be eating, especially when they will eat everything and more one day and then the next they want nothing to do with their food. The Playtex® Mealtime Plates and Bowls are both portion-sized, which is a tremendous help because it takes the guessing and thinking out of serving the right amount for your toddler. There will always be days when what your kids eat varies, but to have a guide right in front of you of what a portion looks like for your toddler is a life saver.
I find that dinner is the best meal out of the three to really focus on teaching the triplets how to self-feed with a spoon and fork. It is usually the meal where we have a variety of foods that can easily be picked up with the Playtex® Toddler Utensils. Since they are also wanting to be more independent, they are more receptive to using the Playtex® Toddler Utensils.
As crazy as it is, we still try to go out for dinner with all 4 kids. It is a lot of work, but we manage and when I remember, I like to bring the Playtex® Toddler Forks out with us. The forks at restaurants are always so big, which makes it difficult for Jackson, Olivia and Levi to eat on their own. If they have their Playtex® Toddler fork, they are able to eat dinner on their own, which then allows Dan and I to eat some of our meal while it’s warm.
And for my final TIP #3 – Eat What They Eat
Any parent out there who has a toddler or who has gone through the toddler stage, knows that they can be picky eaters. Dan and I have found that no matter how good their meal may be, Emily and the triplets always want to have what we are eating. We have tried the whole feed them first and then eat dinner after and unless we are eating dinner at 10pm when they have all gone to bed, they still want to eat what we are eating. So to save yourself the time of double feeding, make a meal that you would eat and that your toddler can eat. If they see you eating something 9 out 10 times, they will eat it too!
Feeding toddlers can be a challenge for any parent and every day is going to be different. If you can introduce products in your life to make things easier, such as the Playtex® Mealtime plates, bowls and utensils, everyone wins. I have loved using the Playtex® Mealtime plates, bowls and utensils and can honestly say they have helped me to survive feeding 4 toddlers. They are very durable products and I have seen them put to the test with 4 toddlers who love to run around and throw things. I am happy to have partnered with PlaytexBaby™ and to share with you products that I actually use and love and that I know will help to make your life a little easier too.
I also hope that my three tips will help you out as well. Although they may seem like standard tips, sometimes it is nice to be reminded of little things that you can do and to help show that you don’t have to complicate your life when it comes to feeding toddlers. Just remember to 1. Keep it Simple, 2. Be Creative and 3. Eat What They Eat!
To find out more information about the Playtex® Mealtime plates, bowls and utensils you can visit playtexbaby.ca. If you would like to purchase any of the Playtex® Mealtime plates, bowls and utensils you can find them all at amazon.ca
If you have any tips that you use or have used when it comes to feeding toddlers, please share them below!