Tuesday, August 5, 2008

The Baxter Factor

There must be something about our DNA. That is the only thing that can possibly explain my children's love affair with food. Admittedly, I love to eat. Ask anyone who knows me, if you have food, I'm there. I fall into the category of people who can't sleep if there is chocolate in the house. You think this is an exaggeration, but sadly it's only too true. Cheesecake, cookies, cake, pie, junk food of many varieties - if it's around it's breakfast, lunch, and dinner until it's gone.

My husband is also a pretty good eater. I discovered early in our marriage that trying to make leftovers doesn't work. If I make a pot of chili, he eats a pot of chili. And now we have four children - three of them male - who are every bit as bad as we are. What is going to happen to our financial security when Liam and Niall are teenagers? Laugh all you want, this is serious stuff. I've already decided they will probably have to contribute to the food budget just to keep us going. Let me give you some idea of what I'm talking about.

1. I had to make a rule when Liam turned seven that no child can eat more than I do at dinner. Seven??!!!

2. When Conan made a bird feeder out of peanut butter and birdseed Niall ate it.

3. Meara eats a large bowl of cereal for breakfast, and then routinely goes from stool to stool looking for leftovers in all of her brother's bowls. When finished, she asks for more. And more, and more.

4. Two boxes of mac-n-cheese is only enough for my kids if there's at least one side dish to go with it. Then they're hungry an hour later.

5. Niall loves smoked oysters, chicken hearts, zucchini, cabbage, salad, seafood, bird seed, crawdads (crayfish), and any food with an unusual name/smell/appearance. He doesn't like potatoes.

6. Tonight for dinner Meara ate seven slices of cantaloupe, a 4 inch sub (with cucumbers, meat, cheese, and tomatoes) and who knows how many fishy crackers, all proceeded by an appetizer of popcorn and whatever else her dad gave her before I got home.

7. All of my children will eat at least 6 plate sized, medium thick pancakes. Liam and Niall eat more like 10. We don't make pancakes.

8. All the lunch ladies at the school have commented on my children's ability to 'pack it away'. Apparently they are legendary school lunch consumers.

9. Conan likes to eat breakfast, brunch, lunch, lunch II, pre-dinner, dinner (unless it's chicken), and bedtime snack. No I don't let him, but he capitalizes at Grandma's house. She's sure I starve my children.

10. On Sunday Conan brought home another birdfeeder and we had to hide it from Niall. "Mom! He's eating my birdfeeder again!" Whose kids have to say things like this?

Can you see where I'm going here? If we had junk food at our house my children would have a serious problem. (Anyone who doesn't already know what we look like is probably feeling a little concerned as it is). What is going to happen to us? My children may literally put us out on the streets with their dietary demands - and then they'll really be hungry!

All I can say is that you mom's with kids who don't eat - you may not have it so bad. At least you'll have a retirement - our kids will probably consume ours. And your mothers probably don't accuse you of starving your children, because your children probably don't walk through their door hungry EVERY time you visit.

I could go on, and on, and on about my kids and food. There are benefits of course, like rarely making a dinner no one will eat - although Niall's problem with potatoes combined with Conan's dislike of chicken does cause some issues. And like I've already suggested, I suppose Rusty and I are to blame. That is, unless it's something in the water?


Kristin said...

Laughing out loud right now. and now you've made my hundry in the middle of the night...I wish there was a birdfeeder around here..hehe

Kristin said...


Kelly said...

Your kids are an absolute phenemonen in my world...you've seen my kids eat. I hear they are somewhat normal, but on the opposite end of yours. Seriously, what I wouldn't give to not have to beg, plead, cajole, bribe, threaten, cry (seriously),stress over, and then finally give into a McDonald's trip once a week (just to make sure they get one fair square at least one time a week). They had chocolate milk and saltines for breakfast...LUCKY YOU!!!

by AnnieValentine said...

Meara would gladly gobble up June's disgusting peas and rice babyfood, there is no distracting her when food is around.

She's a cute little food freak.

Stephanie said...

Your kids do eat a lot it sounds like? I thought my oldest (Brayden) ate a lot! He eats as much as me, sometimes more, but Saydria and Kai eat like birds and Cole is off and on. Give them oatmeal and they love it and it holds them over, so I love it when they want oatmeal for breakfast. Also pancakes for us...I love it when my kids eat good in the morning because I know they will be good for at least 2 hours. I just know it will get expensive when they are older. Plus, all their friends will eat all our snacks and stuff.

Burbs said...

I'm laughing so hard thinking about the birdfeeder incident! Being a fellow eater (constant) I especially can relate to what you're saying. I definately don't clean up others plates though!! That's always been Arlo's job :) We've ALL been great eaters at our house!

Natalie said...

The funny thing is Brooke ate HER birdfeeder. So, Conan isn't the only who is one out a birdfeeder. LOL I'm familiar with your kids' appetites (and I know you're all skinny) so this doesn't concern / surprise me, but it does crack me up. When Meara was at my house on Tuesday she was on the post-surgery Brookie diet and was thrilled to dip her popsicle in a bowl of bubblegum ice cream (she licked the bowl clean.)

Laura said...

This is great entertainment on our drive to Utah. I have nibblers at my house who want to eat constantly, but don't eat much at a time usually. I guess Anders is more like a bear who stores up for Winter, binging, and living off of it for a period of time before his next binge. They don't eat much when I make dinner, but no matter how much they eat, they want cereal 30 minutes later. I've rationed the cereal to 1 bowl a day, 2 on Fridays. Dannan counts down the days till Friday!