How to handle birthday cakes for kids – Should you make a healthy cake?

  • Should babies have a healthy first birthday cake?

Have you debated whether to serve healthy cake or real cake at birthdays for your young ones? Do you want to balance a fun party with a healthy party? Do you just want permission to have real cake? (In that case, read no further, you have it! Birthdays are certainly a special occasion, and a perfect time for fun foods like cake and ice cream.)

I generally have a no-foods-are-off-limits view. I have no problem eating cake. But… when it comes to my kids, who are still really young, I struggle. Do they really NEED a super sweet cake to enjoy the day?

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Staying Calm During Meals With A Toddler

Toddler meals are tough. Picky eating, power struggles. Here's how to cope.

Is feeding a toddler harder than you thought it would be? Picky eating, refusing foods, power struggles. Doesn’t your kiddo know you’re just trying to help him eat healthy food so he can grow?

I honestly thought feeding kids was going to be easy. Working as a dietitian before I had kids of my own, I certainly told enough parents the relatively simple guidelines. Don’t pressure them at the table, don’t have an agenda, just make a variety of healthy foods available then back off.

I really thought the problem was that these poor parents just hadn’t been told. Hadn’t been told how simple it is. That they didn’t have to micromanage, kids will naturally eat what they need, given the opportunity.

I firmly believe in this advice. But before I had my own independence-craving toddler, I didn’t know what it would look like. I didn’t know what resistance would feel like. I didn’t know that “this works” doesn’t mean “it works instantaneously every time.” That results are gradual; they might not be noticeable until months or later. I expected that a little. But what I DID NOT expect was my own emotional reactions to perfectly normal kid eating behavior. Irritation. Frustration. Exasperation. Anger, even. Continue reading “Staying Calm During Meals With A Toddler”