We're a few months into this year's school lunches and one thing is crystal clear, Daniel would like to eat nothing but plain, white rice. I'm striving for variety and my 12-year-old is craving rice.
He does not mean rice and vegetables. There is no "rice and..." that he enjoys.
The rice is plain. The same as it's been since he was a toddler. I wish I could tell all the parents of toddlers that Mr. Picky will change. That one day, there will be a miracle and he will stop refusing the family dinner. Except that this didn't exactly happen for us. Daniel is 12 and still prefers the same dish he demanded at three. He's not demanding anymore, but his big brown eyes plead with us. Plead for the wonder that is plain, white rice.
For his healthy and substantial lunches I am not shunning rice. In fact, we love rice in all its forms. Since the moment Daniel learned we had thermos-like food jars to pack along with his lunch, he's been politely and consistently begging for his plain rice. We are out of rice. This is, in his mind, a disaster.
Instead, I've subjected him to edamame, sunflower seed butter, and kumquats. He likes it all. But nothing compares to his beloved. Sometimes I think he's going to grow up, go to college, and be the weird kid in the dorm who dismisses the pizza in favor of a big bowl of steaming rice.
Hmm, that doesn't sound so bad. Forget what I said. Parents of picky toddlers, there is hope.
Melissa is a thirty-year-old art historian and mama to two boys (11 and 10) living in Missouri. She and her husband are threatening to have another baby.