ex.as.per.ated. / by Carey

Yes, that is me. Utterly. Wholly. Fully. Exasperated.

exasperate [v. ig-zas-puh-reyt]: to irritate or provoke to a high degree; annoy extremely.

I don't feel that the official defintion really captures all the meaning I'm placing behind the use of that word. (Words are powerful. At least, I feel they are). What I mean by 'exasperated' is that I'm at the end of my rope. At my wits end. A sense of futile hopelessness. I'm over it. Just plain and simple OOOOOOOOOOOOOOVVVVVVVVVVEEEEEEEERRRRRRR it!  About to snap, over it!

Food.  Eating.  Meal times.  Exasperated.

Little Buddy started eating what we were eating somewhere around 12 months.  He's about to turn five, so that means we've been at this for four years.  FOUR years.  That's 1,460 days.  But who's counting???

We thought Little Buddy wasn't a great eater.  He didn't meet my wonderful aspirations of the super eater that I had alllllll planned out in idealparentland.  IdealParentland, you ask?  You aren't familiar with it?  Oh yes, you know it.  It's that magical place where you, yourself, don't have any kids yet and you judge everyone who does and how they have failed their children by oh... letting them watch tv, use sippy cups instead of regular cups from day one, play with licensed character toys made of, gasp, plastic, and lastly, if they are poor eaters it is most absolutely because the parent has done a poor job with them.  If they'd only done it your way, that kid would be a super eater.

Zap.  WRONG.  Thanks for that big dose of humble pie.  Because that is just simply not how it works.  At any rate, we thought Little Buddy was a poor eater.  That was before the Little Lady came along and outright refused anything but liquid milk.  Period.  Ever.  Now SHE is a poor eater.

So, let's fast forward.  Four years for him.  Three years for her.  It sure feels like we've made no progress.    And I'm absolutely exasperated.  I've hit my limit.  I'm done.  D. O. N. E. done.

Monday evening we had Minestrone for dinner.  I made it from scratch.  I love to cook.  I LOVE it.  And forgive me if I sound arrogant, for I don't intend it arrogant.  But I'm a good cook!  I'm not cooking nasty food for these kids.  I'm cooking gooooooood food.  And 1,460 days in, they are still turning their noses up at it.

I'm so over having to speak over each and every bite.  "Now pick UP your spoon.  Pick UP another carrot.  Put it in your MOUTH." a minute later noticing more wiggling and no eating.  "Pick UP your spoon AGAIN.  pick up ANOTHER carrot.  Put it IN your mouth.  chew it UP."  over and over and over.  They aren't one anymore.  That's one year old behavior.  It is time for culinary boot camp.

I'm really not sure which is more frustrating.  The fact that the Little Lady pretty much eats ony hot dogs without a fight.  Or that Little Buddy may eat everything that a dish contains, but the fact that it is served in a soup or stew form makes it battle worthy.
Does he eat Italian sausage?  YES.  Loves it.
Carrots?  check.
Celery? check.
Spinach?  raw? check.  cooked? uncheck.
bowtie pasta?  check.
cheese?  check.

Mix it all up and its as if I have asked him to eat worms mixed with pig blood.

I'm just over all of this.  It's done.  They are now just too old to be demonstrating this behavior.  I'm fine with allowing them a few things to just not care for.  I have a few of those myself.  But at five years old, you're just gonna have to start eating what we have for dinner, no exceptions!!!  And while we're at it, at three years old, you should not require bite by bite play by play!!!

I personally think this looks delicious.  And it IS!  Here is the recipe for this awesome Minestrone that you can also do in the crock pot if you wish!  I skip the prepackaged pesto, because honestly, we never could taste it, so why waste the money on it?

Carey Pace 2011

To accompany it, I made these fantastic pumpkin chocolate chip muffins.  Goodness are they scrumptious!  I tweaked the recipe a bit though.  I upped the pumpkin - probably 1 to 1 and a quarter cups, and I doubled the spices as well as added ginger.  Plus I probably used at least 1 cup of chips, if not more.  : )  They are sooooo yummy!  Recipe here.

Carey Pace 2011

I shot these with my
Sigma 30mm f1.4