Monday, April 20, 2009

I Guess I'm Going There

I've been debating talking about this for awhile... but for whatever reason I have some anxiety about doing so. I think people think that discussing your kids and their weight is taboo... and to do so is to be a psychopathic abusive mother who is obsessed with thinness. So let me just put out there that that is NOT what is going on here.

I recently took Kid to the doctor and they assessed her percentiles again. This is the 4th time she's fallen just above healthy weight with her BMI. The first time that happened I was outraged at the doctors for labeling her.... but three and half years later I'm wondering if we are doing her a disservice by not changing our lifestyle. We've been kind of letting things go for the last couple of years in regards to her weight and just taking a wait and see approach...but as Kid gets older the more I do worry (not about her weight) about our lack of physical activity and our modeling some pretty bad behaviors regarding exercise (or in Mr F's case lack there of) and love of baked goods.

At this point you'll have to watch the video to know what's going on. But Mr F and I spent a lot of time trying to think of ways we can encourage more physical activity without breaking the bank.

I'm still processing how to address this... stay tuned.


P.O.M. said...

I think this is a perfect forum to talk about this issue. I'm sure several parents have the same fears/concerns. I'm interested to see what other people feel & think.

Me, Only Better said...

This is a great conversation to have. I have three kids. My oldest daughter, now 15, is a skinny rail. My son (12) was thin until 6ish and then started to plump up a bit. He is in the healthy range for weight/height, but is the weight where you know it could swing either way. We started paying way more attention to food - he still has treats, but we are teaching him to be a calorie wise consumer. We also encourage activity for him, as he tends to be more on the lazy side (= I say that with love. SO now that he is older, I will send him to the store to do an errand for me, etc. We also get daily gym here, too. And he is in soccer.

The most interesting part of this for me is that my youngest daughter is a lot like Kid. She says she is hungry, when likely not. And although until recently she has been thin for her height, I see now that she is aquiring a bit of a belly, and I worry that she might end up gaining some weight. Not worry so that I am in a panic or restricting her food, but I am with you on the fact that we want our kids to be their healthiest best. And I also think it is "easier" for a boy to be a more husky build than for a girl.

I am also like you where I "show my affection for my family by baking for them". I have never thought of it like that, but that is so accurate!

So what to do? I think any type of exercise is great. And given that you are limited by $ and a fence - what about evening walks or is there a playground close by?

I need to become more active with my kids, too. So I look forward to reading the responses you get to your post.

Heather said...

Cut. Out. The. Sugar. Aim for Whole Foods. The end.

Jenny O. said...

I think you really have a good grasp on what is going on. Bravo.

Two things:
1: My five year old ( almost six) has the same "eat 'til she's sick" mentality sometimes. I think you're right, they are just learning their body's limits. I also think we, as parents, have to tell them when enough is enough. For instance, if daughter has just had dinner and says she is still hungry, I don't pull out food for her to eat. She's eaten a full meal, so she's more likely just fishing around to find out if she can get a piece of candy or something. That said, if I truly believe she is hungry, fruit is an "anytime" food.

2: For exercise, have indoor dance parties. I crank up the iTunes and we go to town. The kids think it is SUPER fun, and so do I! When I don't have time to dance with them, they enjoy doing it on their own.

Good luck!

lindalou said...

Imo..a 20 minute fun nature walk every day after school or after dinner is all that is necessary.
When I walk, sometimes my kids ride their bikes or rollerskate...

Missives From Suburbia said...

First off, I feel compelled to say your butt looks good in those pants. I don't mean that in any kind of girl crush way. I'm just sayin'.

As for the topic at hand, this is very big on my mind, not because my son is in any danger of being overweight (he's just gotten into double digits on the percentile charts in the last 12 months), but because we have been SO focused on making him eat more that we were not making healthy choices on his behalf. I have managed to cease that behavior, but I am constantly battling my husband and reminding him that dessert comes with one meal a day, not two, and that dessert is one cookie, not three. I fear I will have an overweight child on my hands if we don't get this under control, and after being at the Mall of America for two hours last weekend and seeing all those obese (truly obese) little children sucking down large sodas (hello, they're six years old!) and 10-piece chicken McNugget boxes, I have redoubled my efforts to retrain my husband and ensure we're monitoring our portions and remaining active.

My favorite activity -- FREE -- with the kids is to dance. We put on the music for a half an hour and we move our bodies around the living room. Sometimes we run and trot, and sometimes we dance, but I noticed that I actually break a sweat doing it (maybe it helps that I've got a 13-pound baby strapped to me), and my son has a BLAST. I know you guys do that, because I remember a video way back when, but maybe it becomes a more focused activity a few days a week? We also kick a soccer ball around in the backyard. It's more like keep-away from our son, but it gets him and me moving, and we have a lot of laughs.

To me, the key is having laughs with the kids. Because if they have fun, they will never think of it as exercise. They'll just think of it as a game, and that is the most natural way to fit exercise into our lives. I admire your ability to hop on the treadmill every night, because I cannot seem to pull that off. But just running back and forth in our front yard? No problem.

Oh, and I feel your pain on the housework and no fenced yard. I hate to admit it, but my housework is flat out suffering. It drives me insane, but my new goal is to get the kids out every day and remind myself that's the stuff they'll remember. It is really, really hard, and I suffer more guilt over balance than anything else.

Mrs Furious said...

Straight up she doesn't eat much sugar or processed foods I really do know a lot about nutrition. Sugar is almost unheard of even her diet... she likes savory... proteins, veggies, milk. I pack her lunches of leftover dinner, smoked salmon, fruit & milk. This has been an issue for her even when she was wheat, soy, egg & dairy free. All she had was brown rice, proteins & fruits & veg and she was still overweight. For Kid it is less diet related than it is lack of exercise mixed with a larger genetic build. Baby... yes to the sugar... but not Kid. Of course Baby is underweight.

Lauren said...

I'm 40 yrs old and I don't always notice that I am hungry. I'll start getting crabby or headachy and then realize I need food.

My daughter frequently has a stomach ache when she gets too hungry. If I don't miss the clues she's giving off and offer food before she gets too hungry she doesn't get a stomach ache.

Here is some really great info about food & kids -

One good growth spurt will take care of any extra weight esp at that age.


Haley said...

I'm glad you're talking about this, and I'm paying close attention to everyone's ideas because if my future kids are anything like me (and nearly every one of my relatives) this is going to be an issue I'm going to have to figure out how to deal with with the least emotional scarring possible.

I love the dancing idea -- I remember having the best time dancing with my mom. May I suggest Thriller as an excellent place to start?

We used to also play alot of catch and badminton on warm summer nights.

Mrs Furious said...

Amen to the underweight and pushing food thing. I have been doing that with Baby. Totally anything goes as long as you'll eat. She has a TERRIBLE diet because at the end of the day I just hope she eats... period. I have also been wondering where the line with that should be (and honestly exhaustion and frustration kind of blur the line at times) and when to let it go. Cause you are right that at some point she's going to need to have reasonable ideas about how much is okay.

Me, Only Better,
The baking is tough for me since it's almost part of my identity. Mr F & I eat the brunt of it but it's constant presence is modeling bad food choices. And seriously Mr F & I really do make bad choices all the time. And on some level the kids do learn from that even if they aren't doing it themselves.

And "And I also think it is "easier" for a boy to be a more husky build than for a girl. "
Exactly. I was wondering if I would (or the doctors) care at all if she was a boy. I think there is more leeway with boys and an idea that they'll grow out of it.

Jenny O,
good idea on the dance parties... she'd enjoy that. I don't do that enough.

I'm also happy to hear that your daughter does the same thing... it must be a phase. And thinking about it that way makes it a lot easier to set the limits for them.

YES... I've just committed to walking her home from school which is 1/2 mile and totally doable it's about 15 minutes at her pace. I'm hoping Mr F might be able to do the same in the AM (maybe).

Mrs Furious said...

" I'll start getting crabby or headachy and then realize I need food."
Yeah... I'm actually the same way.

Thanks for the link I'll check it out!

Thriller is a good place to start!

Staci said... know I love this topic & your video. :)

I's not about Kid's diet...there are MANY adults who don't eat as balanced as she does (me included). LOL!

I think you will find with just 20-30 minutes of FUN family activity a day she will start to slim down.

I like the dancing suggestion. If you can't get out of the house a dance party is a great idea.

Another idea would be to see if your library has kids "exercise" videos. Most are not REAL exercises...if you get them for her age...but more about moving your body and why everyone should be doing it...not just adults. :)

I understand about the desserts. My boys always want me to buy them a snack (candy) at the store when I grocery shop. I let them get a snack twice a month. Before my trainer days we would ALL eat a snack(candy) every weekend while sitting on our tush infront of the TV.
Now our "snack" is air popped popcorn. Everyone loves it & it's a lot better than candy.

Maybe get her involved in picking a new "healthier" dessert. Or limit everyone's dessert portions. Like you said...she see's what you & Mr. F do...thinking it's normal.

Fruit is always a good dessert too. ;)

Staci said... party on that covered patio sounds like a BLAST!!! :)

Liz said...

I haven't read the other comments but this is my opinion.

My parents did a good job with the food part of my life...but they ddn't exercise. I really wish they would have! I want this to become natural with my children! I like to run and I have been getting my girls out to run laps around the playground, we go to the playground, we walk to school, we walk to the park, we walk whenever we can. We go on bike rides, I will run and they will bike or daddy with put on rollerblades. They see me lifting weights inside, I got them 2 lb weights. We get it is easier becasue we live in HI and it is nice all the time...but I do plan to continue this in KS. Bundle them up for a walk...just move! It doesn't have to be all about the food. Get out of the house, have her walk on the treadmill (with your watching) just for fun!

I think that the hardest thing is just getting out there. can you walk to school...

I feel that having them in gymnastics sna dance isn't exercise at this age, it is socialization and learning to take directions. She is old enough to run a lap around a track, get a razor scooter, play soccer in the back yard...jump rope...

Mrs Furious said...

I'm with you... I did not grow up with parents who enjoyed exercise or being very active. It has made it so much harder for me to adopt that for myself and I want being active to be natural and enjoyable for the girls. At this age it still is and I really want to capitalize on that while I can. Mr F & I saw a couple of active families back in AA where they were all always going out and doing some kind of physical sport/activity and we want that for our kids too! But you really do have to do it. I've kind of given myself a lazy card in the day since I workout at night but I need to make myself "do stuff" with them.

artsci said...

Most of our family time centers around activity (because it is so cheap). Bike rides, scavenger hunts, the local HS track (it's like a free amusement park w/ the bleachers, track & field mats, and football field to play on). They are my three favorites for the kids(all free). Also a big favorite: homemade obstacle courses.

Mrs Furious said...

Love that site... really fits in with how I have been handling food, etc so far.
Thanks... it's making me feel better ;)

" Or limit everyone's dessert portions."
I really think that is key. She isn't a big dessert eater but the rest of us are... and it just sets a bad example about food quantity and hungry vs eye hungry... which carries over into other eating.
Like today she came home and ate continuously (nuts, yogurt, more nuts) while still saying she was "hungry". It's hard to challenge that but I've really come (in the last week of being with her 24/7) to think that she is just misusing the term. Once she's redirected into an activity she's no longer "hungry".

Mrs Furious said...

Homemade obstacle course... I LOVE that idea!!

Honestly... one of my big problems is getting Mr F to get active with the kids. It's a real hurdle. Hell it's a challenge for him to be active period. ;)

Staci said...

I hear that! My husband isn't as active as I would like. I try to stress to my boys that EVERYONE should be moving their bodies everyday.

My boys also walk on my treadmill. They think it's COOL! :P They don't go incline...and they hold the rails. Of course I never SUGGEST they get on...they do it when the mood strikes. I also have lots of dumbbells around so they ask if they can use them & I show them some exercises they can do. (Always with my supervision)

Heck...I even got DS9 to do Turbo Jam's Ab Jam with me. :) We laughed and joked the whole time. It's all about making it fun for them.

You'll find the right fit for your family. :)

gooddog said...

I really like reading and hearing everyone's thoughts on this. I have an undereater and stress so much but have dear friends with kids on the other end who stress so much too!

My 5 and 1/2 year old has no idea what hunger is. He CANNOT identify it. When he starts to melt down and I know he's hungry I'll even say, "do you have that feeling in your tummy?" and he says...."huh?" I don't know what is up with that. I think you are really insightful to put together that kid is equating "hunger" with "wanting that...". I'm going to look for that in my kid too.

Also, I know our library has a childrens Yoga DVD. Would kid like something like that? I think they feel grown up when they get to excercise to a video. And, really, it would surely be adorable!

Thanks for opening the can of worms. That's why I love reading you.

katieo said...

-We take walks a couple of nights a week after dinner. Whole family, we bring the stroller, some ride scooters, some walk . It's easy and free and gives Aaron and I a chance to catch up with each other (or gossip about the neighbors, lol). I have really fond memories of our family walks when I was younger, I think it's one of the reasons I go crazy in the winter. Plus it only takes about twenty minutes and we can do it around our neighborhood.

-If you still have cable (or can get podcasts on your computer), my Sam LOVES yoga. But most of all he loves doing it with us. Especially his Dad.

Honestly, Kid's palate fascinates me. I think you've done an outstanding job with her eating (definition of hunger aside ;) and her self-esteem. I think you're spot on about modeling the behavior, and really- it'll be good for all of you to make it a priority to be more active as a family.

Also, I so hear you on the body type thing. Out of my three kids, I have one who is right in the middle, one who is technically overweight, and one who is technically underweight (not who you'd think ;). And yet they are all fed the same things - with the same rules - in the same family. I'm just hoping *mostly* good food choices and lots of exercise and everything will even itself out in the long run. I hope. :)

Marie said... it goes. My dd's are (almost) 2yo, 4yo, and 5yo. My 2yo is a 2t and has that typical baby belly..totally normal but not overweight by any stretch. My 4yo is a 4t but could still fit into a 2t waist--a string bean. My 5yo is a size 7/8. She is (literally) one of the tallest (if not THE tallest) in her pre-k class and her bmi is normal for her height, but she is "thicker" than the others. There is a clear "protective layer" on her but at the same time she is perfectly proportinate for her size. And yet I almost died when we had to go buy her 7/8's because I thought "a 5yo should wear a 5t". And I can feel myself getting defensive about it just writing this! She has no complaints about herself and seems perfectly content with herself (as she repeatedly tells us how BEAUTIFUL she is throughout the day!)

As for the baking...when she was born we NEVER had dessert. (ok, WE did but only after she was asleep!). Then somehow we had it because I made cookies, etc.. And now they ask every night for dessert, like its an expected thing. I know its my fault but I LIKE to bake and its also my way of showing a little love for them.

As for the "I'm hungry" thing..this is a DAILY dilemma for us. We will have eaten a FULL meal and within the hour there is an "I'm hungry" when you know there is no way on earth they could be. Its when we are home or when they are not captivated by something else. I don't think I've ever heard an "I'm hungry" while out with friends or at the park. It almost makes me angry when they pull out the I'm hungry for the 90th time.

As for exercise...we are definitely lacking. During the nice weather we are all about outside and running/playing, etc.. but with the cold..not so much. I am just NOT someone to go out in the cold, so we hibernate here.

In the end, that was a huge ramble just to say I'm with you. I don't want to EVER force a body image on my girls but at the same time I want them to be healthy..not "skinny", but healthy active people who enjoy good foods and sweets in moderation. But I don't want them to be concious of their bodies either... And if my 4yo stays a twig I don't want my older one to feel self-concious if she's not..

I freaking hate weight, body image, etc.. especially when talking about my girls. They are freaking perfect just the way they are and it really ticks me off that one day they won't think so. End rant.

Mrs Furious said...

". I don't think I've ever heard an "I'm hungry" while out with friends or at the park."
Precisely what goes on here. There is a definite random/boredom factor going on with the food these days.

I didn't really think too much about her weight/size until this year when she is definitely bigger (taller too... but bigger) than her classmates. One mom who attended the swimming lessons and so saw them nude has commented ever since that Kid is going to need a bra soon or has a nice rounded butt... it just made me furious... of course her girls are string beans. And I started thinking about how soon even Kid will notice the differences... so sad... but true. And much like your girls Baby & Kid are not going to look alike and I hope that neither one feels like they got a raw deal (one will have boobs & ass... the other will be small but will get stretchmarks... sorry about that Baby!)

Kid and her palate... it is fascinating. I was just thinking about all of her favorite foods and it's like reading off of a high end adult's menu. Of course Baby's sole goal is to eat as many mini marshmallows as she can per day.

Now that the sun is staying up longer I think an evening walk would be really nice... (did you read that Mr F?... try to get home before 6!)

I actually checked the library today... nada... but I did get Kid to do a "Shimmy" episode once and she really liked it. Maybe I'll start loading up the Tivo.

You know Kid might get into the treadmill just because it has been forbidden for so long ;)

Mrs Furious said...

Thanks everyone for commenting! This has really been an interesting conversation.

Of course you should know that we totally overcompensated today and did every possible active outdoor thing possible ;)

Sherry said...

I didn't watch the video yet but I get the gist by reading the comments. My oldest daughter was born 5 lbs 14 ozs. To this day, the kid is still small and she's now 9. My middle daughter weighed 7 lbs 7 ozs at birth and she has always been chunky. She's really not chunky, she is thick though. Just throwing out numbers here, if you grab Hanna (oldest daughter)'s rib cage, it's 4 inches thick. Hailey's (middle) is 8 inches. She's just got a bigger structure. The kid is obsessed wtih food. If we get a late start in the mornings so I feed them lunch food instead of breakfast, she's wanting to know when lunch is because that is her first meal and it's breakfast. She expects to eat 3 times a day plus snacks. She can eat at her dads house then as soon as I pick her up she wants to eat. I was getting worried with her obsession with food but I never addressed it as I didn't want her to have a complex. Now it's a totally different story. She wants salads and diet drinks. She talks about needing to exercise to lose some weight. She gets on the scale to weigh herself to make sure she's not "fat." Did I mention she's 7? Her stepmom is tiny and I can't help but to wonder if she's picking this up from her. I explained that she's perfect and she doesn't need to lose weight. I don't know what else to do for her. She has thinned out but I think it's because she's more active. She still likes to eat but she's making more adult choices.

Kiki said...

I love this, mostly because you put it out there and everyone responded with love and lifted you are such a GREAT MOM and it shows in everything you do, every choice you make!!!

I have no thoughts to add...I think all the commenters hit it on the head, except for the dance party...get some streamers and let them dance with these in their hands to get their arms moving...also when I taught there was a kid song like "Freeze Dance" I think....the kids loved it because they had to freeze when the music stopped.

Climbing trees was one of my fave things to do as a child, I would carry a pillow and a book up with me and read in the boughs, maybe give her binoculars and let her see what she can see...

You are great, I so admire you and I know you would only do what is best for Kid and Baby...anyone who reads this or knows you...knows that!

angie said...

Interesting topic. As you know, Nate is more in baby's camp (news flash at his well child he hit 10%ile in weight. Holy cow!!!!) and I hope some day we can have a talk on here about how to get the weight on, but the good health habits there too...

as you know we are exercisers and nate has "run" hundreds of miles in a stroller. Lately we have been exercising in the morning (to get the metabolism going) and he exercises with me. He also likes to walk on the treadmill (he goes 1 mile per hour holding onto the arms and one of us standing next to him).

In terms of evening activities we go for a walk (often to almendinger) and then play on the playground equipment. But that sounds like it's not an option for you guys (i told you that you shouldn't move...did I mention that SHE hasn't received an offer yet on the house?). We also play hockey where tony hits the puck to him and then he chases it (or sometimes hits it on cue). Same with "bat and ball". I also have him help me garden. I give him weeds and he runs across the yard to put him in the compost container. Kid is old enough to help weed and rake as well. She is also old enough to play some of the old favorite games like tag and hide and seek. you guys could do that during the evening and on weekends as well.

Linc had a 102.9 temp at "school" today so I am home with him tomorrow so I may call to chit chat more about this topic. It's fascinating.

And thanks for having the courage to discuss this. This is too often a taboo topic. As you can see from the comments a lot of people are going through this. As we have often discussed, I am not sure what is more stressful: having kid in the higher percentage or the lower percentage. But I bet the "publics" perception of parents of kids in the higher range is different than their perception of parents in the lower range. I think that is wrong and just hurts discussion and people getting advice and support.

Nutmeg said...

For activity ideas, there have been a ton of good ones already, How about starting a garden?

That is an outdoor activity, learning experience and food cost decreaser and really a life long joy. Some of my fondest memories of childhood were sitting in the garden illicitly eating green beans. You'd be surprised how quickly you can work up a sweat hoeing.

Also, I'm always fascinated by people who eat dessert at home (I specify at home because when I'm out I occassionally have dessert). In my family we never had dessert. My mom baked a lot, we often had cookies around the house, but there was never the expectation that after dinner some time we would have dessert.

As far as hunger goes, though I am dealing with the opposite problem with Eli (ie he needs to eat and sometimes all I can get him to eat is applesauce and yogurt and bread and butter, it is shocking how much applesauce, raisins, yogurt and tiny tomatoes that child will eat), if he wants raisins or something he's already had too much of, and I can't tell if he's really hungry or just wants something that tastes good, I offer something boring, that I know he eats readily. A rice cake or some bread. If he says yes? Hungry. If he continues asking for raisins or grapes or applesauce or yogurt, throws a crazy fit and rolls around on the floor and then trucks off to play without eating the bread? Not so much hungry. Obviously Kid won't do the crazy tantruming, but the point is the same. Something boring fills the hungry need, but not the taste need, so you feed hungry but not the eating for the sake of flavor.

Kate said...

Mrs F - I don't have too much advice, I'm learning as I go with my two toddlers, but I wanted to say I think it's VERY brave to talk about this stuff so openly. I can stray towards the sedentary side of things, and thankfully my husband is a good balance. He actually makes us all play tag at the park and actually run around, vs. me watching the kids on the playground equipment as I prefer to do.

But back to your courage. I think we all know how difficult parenting is, and the weight of some of our choices can be overwhelming sometimes. But like you said, we're all human and some days we really just want to turn on the TV for a bit and take some much needed downtime for ourselves. So starting discussions with your husband about making changes is really great. It's inspiring me to look hard at some of the examples we're setting.

My kids have great teachers in their preschool, and sometimes when talking about ways to help their development they remind me of things we should be doing--getting them in organized sports, doing art projects at home, etc. When they make a suggestion like that sometimes I get down, like DUH, I'm their mother, why haven't I been doing more stuff like that already. But I try to be gentle with myself and remember that I don't have all the answers, and I'm constantly learning how to be a better mother.

julie said...

I totally agree that our children learn by watching us. If we want them to be more active, we have to be more active. My kids are older so it is easier to do certain things now...but the best thing for us is to do an activity outside like a walk in the woods or a hike...though we live close to all of that so it makes it easier. We are not active by nature either though. We could easily spend a gorgeous sunny day indoors. We do ski all winter, but that is so much more fun than a walk.

I also highly recommend the Nintendo Wii. Yes, I said it. I recommended a video game console for exercise. My kids get out of breath playing it. It is an interactive activity. The kids are jumping up and down the entire time. They have different dancing video games, skiing and all sorts of sports. I would not have believed that you get physical exercise out of a video game, but with the Wii, you do. No, I don't work the company. And I am a huge hater of video games so don't let anyone in my family know I just said something positive about video games.

I am not saying that the kids should only play the Wii, but it is a fantastic indoor activity that can actually be active. I have boys...they love playing sports outside and they absolutely love video games, too.

I have started to curb my older son's afternoon snacking. Now that he's 9, I finally feel secure knowing that he is not going to wither and die if he does not get to eat every time he says he's starving. My younger one can go a whole day without eating or just eating carrots. I don't get it. I used to just let him eat what he wanted when he wanted because I was so concerned about his lack of eating. Now the offerings are healthy ones first: cheese, nuts or fruit. If there is only healthy choices in the house, that's all they get.

Oh yeah, I have started to ask Jack (9 year old) whether he is truly hungry or just feels like eating something because it tastes good. It is so hard to be a good role model since I know for a fact that I eat for all sorts of reasons other than hunger. I have actually talked to him a bit about I gained weight because I ate when I was not hungry so I am also learning this along with him. He's probably like "yeah, whatever, mom, can I still have the goldfish?" I just don't get that girltalk with my boys:(

Kelly said...

Don't feel bad my daughter is above the healthy line too.It is the exact opposite of abusive to be concerned and talk about it! We eat healthily and I preach on the value of exercise to her. I believe being bigger is in her genes. It runs in my mom's fam and my ex's as well. However as she gets older she's getting taller and not gaining so much. Only thing is, I have to watch her because she will sneak food,which is, a whole other issue. Just take a loving approach, and Kid will be ok!!

Mrs Furious said...

"mostly because you put it out there and everyone responded with love and lifted you up"
Me too!! I was really worried that people would misread what I was saying. I love my readers!

And thank you for your kind words.

And YES Freeze Dance is fun... Kid used to have that to dance to in her old dance class. I'm going to hunt it down on iTunes.

Well you know this has been going on for YEARS.
I don't know which is worse worry wise... I guess it flip flops once they are school aged... before that you worry if they are too thin then you worry if they are too heavy.

Hide & Seek, Tag, etc... oh remember how much fun that was?! I wish we had more neighborhood kids to play or that Baby was a little closer in age it would help with more of that spontaneous play. Next time we move I am really going to investigate how many kids are on the street!

Mrs Furious said...

Funny... I don't know how dessert happened around here either. I think it had to do with Mr F & I having huge sweet tooths and my having more free time once we were married and kind of basing my role on old television shows. Seriously. That and going to pastry school ;)
We don't have cake, etc every night but we do have "dessert" about an hour after dinner and they have something... it might be cereal or yogurt or it might be a cookie and milk. At this point it is just routine. Mr F & I eat our later and it is not ... a bowl of cereal ;)

Thank you for sharing all of that.
"If we get a late start in the mornings so I feed them lunch food instead of breakfast, she's wanting to know when lunch is because that is her first meal and it's breakfast."
Haha... that sounds like Kid.

and OH to the weighing and not wanting to be fat.... I had a stepmom like that.

Thank you so much.
"me watching the kids on the playground equipment as I prefer to do."
I don't know anyone like that ;)

Okay now I am actually intrigued by the Wii. I wonder if it would have a prolonged interest? While the weather isn't as bad here there is still winter and we definitely sat on our ass all winter and I think that is part of the problem and what we're seeing with her current spike in weight. I think my mom has the WiiFit... we'll have to try it!

Mrs Furious said...

Sneaking food... yep... that was not an issue before for us but Kid has just started to do that these last couple of months. Thank you for bringing that up because it is a whole other issue and I think it is pretty common too.

Anonymous said...

The first itme I saw that kid would eat the stuff she does I thought you were lying. I now know your not but it has encouraged me to have my kids try everything. Just what everyone else is saying is activity. It sucks. I don't ever feel like it. But I see an almost immediate change in C's body when we are active as a family. It will be easier now that the weather is changing. C is ALWAYS off the charts for everything. Including that noggin of his. I saw it with my step...a little activity and a growth spurt and bam...healthy. Hang in there.

Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, the wiifit. So good and a challenge for me too..

Lauren said...

I remember being a kid and my stepdad making snide comments about what I would eat after dinner .. one orange was acceptable, but if I went back for another I was made to feel bad about myself.

So I'd get a big plastic cup and turn on the water, to make it sound like I was filling it & I'd put 3 oranges in it. That way I could walk back to my room w/o anyone saying anything to me about *all* the food I was eating .. Funny thing, as an adult I've never eaten 4 oranges in one sitting. Never even had the desire.

Trying to control someone else's food intake can have really bad side effects. (Lying, sneaking, low self-esteem, bulimia ... )

I'd make a monkey platter for Kid and keep filling it with what she wants until done. Make it interesting and colorful and fun.

If a kid (not just Kid, but any kid) feels deprived they will find away to fill that hole up.

Nintendo should have you host a Wii Fit giveaway, but I think they are done with that ..

Mrs Furious said...

Out of Hand,
" Including that noggin of his."
Kid too... ugh... trying to get her head to fit in shirt holes is sometimes comical (for us... terrifying for her).
And " I don't ever feel like it."
Honestly it's probably the biggest problem. Kid likes to hang out reading... and... who am I to stop her? That's what I prefer doing also. It takes a lot of motivation for me to *do something*. They always love it when I decide to take them somewhere afterschool... but I have to really battle myself to do it since by 4 I'm usually pretty *done* and ready for my coffee ;)

"Trying to control someone else's food intake can have really bad side effects."
I agree completely. I really don't want food to even be an issue. I struggle with even saying no to stuff just because I don't want to create any issues. For her I really want to focus on increased activity.

Heather said...

Sorry, I meant to come back yesterday!

I haven't watched the video, but the comments have taken an interesting turn.

I was always slightly thicker than my older sister, and from a very very early age, somehow I knew it. I remember being 4 or 5 and wondering if I was fat because I always ate my pop-tart crusts (and she didn't). When I was 5 or 6, my parents went on a trip and my grandparents stayed with us, and they called me little piggy and taunted me the whole time. I remember my mom looking incredulously at me when I would say I was “hungry.” My dad used to tell me that I walked just like this really fat girl down the street. Naturally, I assumed that he was saying I was fat. When he died I comforted myself with cheese puffs. Seriously. I also comforted myself with rollerskating, which got me into exercise to alleviate anxiety. To this day, I think my weight hang ups have been because I've had a hard time seeing myself as anything other than those very early ideas that were reflected back to me.

I'm not sure this provides any real advice. My dad took us on bike rides, walks and understood the value of having an outlet for excess energy. My mom is/was a non exerciser, and continues to recommend binge eating/fasting as a the diet cure all. Hello therapy. :) I think nightly walks and dancing are great activities to direct her energy. Maybe she's just an anxious little girl -- I was and once I had an outlet for it (rollerskating), I developed a lifelong habit and need for exercise as my outlet.

Christy said...

First, are you sure she doesn't have a thyroid issue? Because it really does sound like she eats pretty healthily. My niece, 9, has an underactive thyroid and it caused her to gain quite a bit of weight. She is on medication for that now but still has that extra weight to deal with.

Second, my oldest is a beanpole but I think it is genetics and has nothing to do with her eating habits. I think she has horrible eating habits, moty here, and am scared of the day it catches up with her. She can go all day without eating if there isn't something she wants but woah nelly, when there is something she wants, she gorges herself on it.

I like the dance party idea. I have a friend that lives in New Zealand and she has her girls run around their house every afternoon for a certain amount of time. I don't know what she tells them to get them to do it, but they do it and love it.

Christy said...

As for the mother who made the comment about Kid needing a bra, that was just unnecessary. i hope she didn't say anything where Kid could hear it. We get lots of comments on Chloe's skinny-ness too and they piss me off just as bad as the fat comments we get on my 2 year old. Girls have a hard enough time with self-esteem as it is without people making mindless comments.

Mrs Furious said...

wowza... I think it would be pretty hard not to have weight/food issues with those kind of childhood experiences. I can't believe the "fat girl walk" comment. Yikes.

"As for the mother who made the comment about Kid needing a bra, that was just unnecessary."
Infuriatingly she makes these comments IN FRONT of her. I really don't know how to handle it. I just try to not comment and not draw attention to it. It was really traumatic for me... it really made me feel bad. Argh!

Thyroid... no... we haven't had that checked. I'll ask her Dr next time we go. It is true that her eating is good and while there is a wider genetic range in our families and that could account for some of it... she is bigger than either Mr F or I at the same age or our siblings.

Christy said...

Ugh, hopefully it went right over Kid's head. I might would have to pull her to the side and let her know what's what :)

wootini said...

I CANNOT believe that other mom would say something like that in front of Kid. WTF?!!

Mrs Furious said...

I think it did... thankfully.

I know. I was shocked. And I typically like that mom... but she definitely lacks the filter between brain & mouth!

MommyTime said...

This is a great post and a fascinating discussion in the comments. I grew up in a family where food was about sociability but eating was very "normal" -- my sisters and I learned healthy habits and never had food/control related issues. But having had friends in college and graduate school who suffered mightily in terms of their relationships with food, I find myself wondering all the time how my mother did it, especially since she never exercised ever, and yet managed to give us a sense of good eating habits.

I try to instill good habits in my kids and to make up for my mother's lack of emphasis on physical activity by playing that up in our house. We I do the On Demand cable exercise tv together (kids' yoga, kick boxing, bhangra dancing, etc). I jog next to them while they ride bikes (keep in mind that their pace on a bike is so much slower than yours that you actually couldn't be on a bike next to them; your bike can't go slow enough). We climb trees, walk the dog, go swimming in summer, run races. It's hard being stuck indoors, but we do the dance party thing too. Also? I give up certain standards of cleanliness inside in favor of being able to spend time with them outside (no fence out front here either), since that's more important. I personally think that finding a physical activity that YOU enjoy as much as they do is the biggest battle. Then you'll all be more inclined to do it often.

Mrs Furious said...

" I personally think that finding a physical activity that YOU enjoy as much as they do is the biggest battle."
Good point. That is really a lot of the problem. Today I decided it was worth the longish drive to go back to the Biltmore with them afterschool... plenty of walking and running for them... but a beautiful environment for me. I really need to feel immersed in what we're doing and I just don't always feel like that (or can't maintain it) with yard type activities at home... there is always a distraction and once I'm distracted Kid is uninterested.

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