We have a saying at our house, “we grown ‘em BIG.” We are referring to our children when we say that. Banana Taffy is 6’5 and over 200 pounds. Chocolate Taffy is 6’1 and 180 pounds. They started out very average, but the moment they started eating, they started growing and NEVER stopped. We don’t have growth spurts here, we just have growth, constantly. All my children have hit 20 pounds before their 1st birthday. All my children have been on the high side of the growth charts if not completely off the charts. It’s just what we do, “We grow ‘em BIG!”
Being so, feeding these growing children is a HUGE part of my daily work.
I asked Chocolate Taffy how he thought I keep them full…he replied, “One meal at a time.” Smart alec! But there is some truth to that really. One meal at a time. In our house we ate 3 meals a day and possibly a snack in the afternoon, but not always. Here’s some things I do that may or not be helpful to you in feeding your children.
- Start with a big breakfast. Whenever we have cereal for breakfast, everybody is hungry in a hour. We eat lots of eggs and lots of turkey bacon. Serve protein for breakfast. Even if I make muffins or waffles, I try include some protein, like hard-boiled eggs or a glass of milk.
- I make most our food from scratch. Sometimes I get lazy and buy a bag of fish sticks, but for the most part we eat homemade-mac and cheese, bread, casseroles, soups, etc. I’ve found if it’s homemade, it’s more filling and takes longer for their bellies to process. If we eat Kraft Mac and Cheese, everybody is hungry an hour later, if we eat homemade, they can make it until later in the afternoon.
- I try to include something raw at every meal. Even if it’s just carrot sticks. Raw food is processed better but also seems to keep them full longer. We have raw fruit with breakfast and either fruits or vegetables at lunch and dinner.
- I try to make a LOT of food at the meal, so the big kids can have seconds if they want too.
- I don’t encourage snacking, in fact, it kind of bugs me. Who wants a messy kitchen all day!
- I try to serve some kind of grain with dinner. Either in the form of biscuits or breadsticks (that I’ve made) or rice (brown is more satisfying). So even if I don’t have much of the main dish, they can fill up on bread, if I know it’s been made by my loving hands than I don’t feel guilty about them eating it in large quantities.
- I think junk food makes you hungrier for more junk food. So even though I allow it sometimes for special occasions, we don’t eat much junk food. Eating a bag of Doritos makes you want to eat more Doritos. They sure taste good, but oh the guilt! And the belly ache! So if we need a treat, I make it. I make cookies pretty much once a week. I try to make other yummy things too so nobody feels deprived, homemade treats are much more satisfying and actually hold some nutritional value to keep hunger away longer.
I don’t like grocery shopping, I used too, back when I only had three little ones and it was the highlight of our week. Now it’s a necessary task, being so I only shop at a few stores: Costco, Sam’s, and Trader Joe’s. Occasionally I will buy something at Wal-Mart, but not that often. My new favorite place to order food is from Azure Standard. You can buy large quantities of healthy grains pretty inexpensively from them. When you visit their website set up an account to see the prices. I buy wheat and oatmeal and coconut oil and honey and raw sugar from them. I buy things in 50lb bags, so if you have the storage space the price can’t be beat!
We don’t have a food budget. I am married to a visionary and they don’t do budgets…so being a first born I’m already somewhat naturally frugal and reserved in my spending so we end up spending the same amount each month without having to call it a budget. I’d say we spend about 300 a week, sometimes that number fluctuates if I’m buying bulk meat or it’s the week to pay for my Azure order. And that number usually includes my household stuff like paper towels and toothpaste. I don’t know if that’s a lot or not. lol That number does not include eating out, which we do enjoy about once a week, our older sons often pay for their own food when we eat out, they are just really responsible that way and do it because they want too, not because we make them.
If you look under my recipes tab you’ll see many of our favorite recipes that I actually use all the time!
Feed your family well, it’s an opportunity to serve them and with the right attitude you bring honor to the Father!