As I've written, Chicken is not exactly a fan of vegetables. She's been eating more recently, particularly at lunch, and I've promised Chicken's dad that I won't stress about it. (If you know me "IRL", as they say, you're laughing right about now.) Rather than stressing, I've decided to offer Chicken many options and just hope she doesn't throw it all on the floor.
I made stir fry tonight, which is a great opportunity to enjoy vegetables. In many cases, stir fry is very BLW friendly, but I happen to like my vegetables bite-sized and that's not ideal for Chicken. She does best with big pieces, which she can hold onto and munch on , or tiny bits. So, I just cut some larger pieces of broccoli, carrots and yellow bell pepper for her and cooked them a bit longer than the smaller pieces for Chicken's dad and me. She dug in to the brown rice and chicken without hesitation, but ignored the vegetables on her tray. It occurred to me, while we ate, that Chicken hasn't been "regular" over the past few days. We're out of prunes, so I dug out a package of organic pureed peas, pears and spinach that I bought to try. Peas and pears are both recommended to remedy such situations.
Chicken LOVED this puree and it was so easy to serve because it squirts out like toothpaste. Anyway, she ate spoonful after spoonful. Then she signed "finished" so we cleaned her up. She got very fussy and vocalized some complaints (we're guessing) so we signed "more" and gave her back her tray. She picked up her broccoli and started checking it out. It looked like she wasn't really sure what to do with it. I leaned over and took a little bite of it. Then she took a bite and offered it back to me. (She's really into sharing lately.) We went bite for bite for a few minutes. I offered her some more broccoli and she went to work eating it, picking it apart, and offering some to her dad.
In my ideal world, I wouldn't interfere with Chicken's food experiences. I don't want to start manipulating her when it comes to food, which I feel parents do when they play the whole "Here comes the airplane!" game. However, my experience as a teacher tells me that sometimes you need to connect new experiences/skills to existing experiences and skills in order for someone to be comfortable taking risks. So, if Chicken likes sharing and ends up discovering that broccoli isn't so bad by sharing with me, then I'm ok with that.
P.S. Chicken's dad gets credit for the photos!