Give Yourself a Break
It is summer for those of us in the Northern Hemisphere and that usually means travelling, altered schedules, and lots of fun. It can also throw your normal routine on its head, which often causes parents to panic. Deep breaths and remember, sometimes you won’t be able to put the well-balanced meal that you prefer on the table, but as long as tummies are satisfied when they go to sleep at night, their nutrition will balance out.
Recently we went on a trip, and there were a couple occasions we had less than ideal snacks/meals, but they functioned in the moment. After 24 hours of travel, we got to our destination late at night, expecting to have the ability to run to a 24-hour convenience store to at least get milk and hopefully a snack. We got in the car to find the car battery was dead, so we were not able to go anywhere. Unable to get assistance until the morning, and not wanting to run 5K+ in the middle of the night, we had to make due with water, granola bars, cookies, and dried fruit bars to get us through our jetlagged middle of the night hunger until the morning. The ideal “lunch” it was not, but we did make it through to the morning.
There will always be occasions that plans change last minute, schedules are disrupted, or kitchen disasters occur and a last minute meal needs to be put together. When traveling, I always carry a couple snack foods, just in case, and if you end up searching through your chiller and cupboards to piece together a meal, have fun. Sometimes meals are more about fun and adventure than rules and schedules. In general, toddlers never eat consistently and well rounded, even if you put the ideal meal on the table, so don't beat yourself up if you put a less than ideal meal on the table once in a while. Trust your little one knows what and how much he needs to eat to grow properly and live the adventure of the moment and enjoy!