I like vegetables ... the importance of a positive attitude and mirroring it for your children!

Posted by Eric McCaslin on 10/3/2016

I like vegetables ...

Actually, I never did like vegetables growing up.  I fought with my parents, sat at the dinner table for hours sometimes 'until I finished my veggies', and had some what I thought were 'near death' experiences when being forced to eat certain vegetables.  I know that some of what we like and what we don't when it comes to eating is based on our genetics, but most of us know that it is also based on what we grow up with and what else we are allowed to eat.

Determined to be more successful with my children, than in my own personal eating history, I had plans to be a good example and stay positive on the subject of vegetables in the house.  I have had many failures in raising children, but this is one area that has been a success. 

My kids (12 and 15 years old at the time of this posting) both like lots of vegetables.  They don't love every vegetable, but they have always been willing to try new things, and have ended up with willing and diverse taste buds.  During this journey, my wife and I were always positive about vegetables.  We were excited about them (even if we were pretending).  We celebrated vegetables and undersold sweets.  We limited sweets and extra sugars and praised how good different things taste when we keep a balanced diet.  We also ate our veggies (my wife loves them anyways, but I have had to develop my appreciation for them over the years).

We have tried our best to have this attitude with many other things and for the most part when we do, it translates over to our children.  School is another example of this.  By celebrating learning, the opportunity to be challenged, the times when we struggle and overcome, and by supporting our children's schools and teachers, we have helped them to have a positive mindset towards school.  Obviously it helps when both parents work in schools, but for the most part I think we have been able to instill in them a desire to learn new things (even when it is hard to do so).

We haven't celebrated cleaning the house, and I can't begin to tell you how much of a struggle that one is :) 

So, I hope this helps you to either feel supported in what you are already doing or give you some inspiration to work on changing mindsets in your house.  Do your best to model positivity, resilience (the ability to respond favorably when things go wrong ... to rebound), and a willingness to try new things happily (we like to call that 'alacrity' in my house).  In that spirit, here is one of my favorite youtube videos:

I Like Vegetables by Parry Gripp