I am all for giving your kids a great start to the day. Having a healthy breakfast can do so much for a person. Yes, I know. My kids are in better moods when they have a big breakfast full of variety, sure. But in all honesty, that just doesn't happen here as often as the experts think it should.
The family is full of late sleepers. Eating right away after we roll out of bed is not something any of us do well. I've spent my whole life fighting this same issue myself, so encouraging the kids is not my best skill. I do try to avoid the cereals that are all high sugar or just plain junk. But this isn't a sign of me trying to feed better, eat better or anything better for THEM. It's simply because I eat the crap too.
Fruit Loops, Corn Pops, Honeycombs... Sugar Crisp (have I told you I can't get enough?) There was a time my brother was hooked on Pop Tarts. I felt his pain. What fixed it? He got a monstrous box of them as a gift for Christmas once. But I bet he ate the whole thing. And I bet he still has them now and then, just not like it was before. And now there's Chocolate Cheerios. Seriously. I wonder how much the nutritional values vary on this compared to other cereals. I heard this woman at the store one day talking about them...
"Oh My God. Really? Look at this? Yeah, sure, let me buy THAT for my kid. Like he's not crazy enough already." I'm thinking "Lady? You look like you might almost be 18. You have four colors in your hair. Peircings and tattoos all over. YES. Cereal IS your child's only issue." Let's just not mention the cartfull of chips and pepsi and pre-packaged dinners you have there. It's all about the cereal.
(no offense intended to those friends of mine who have multi-color hair, piercings or tattoos... It was the whole picture of this girl that was JUST WRONG.)
I miss the days of pregnancy when I didn't have to explain my crappy breakfasts to anyone. Not that I have to explain myself anyway, but I didn't get that quick shot of guilt when I read some random article about kids test scores and the relation to breakfast. There was about a month during my second pregnancy where I lived on Rice Krispies. Several times a day. Every day. Truthfully, there was more sugar dumped on the bowl than there was cereal. I NEEDED the milky sugar goo taste. Ahhhh... pregnancy.. how I miss you. (well, except for the labour part. And the kids after part... I've got enough now.)
Bah, I have smart kids. Lucky Charms or not. You know what has an equal effect on my kids moods?
MY moods. MY choice of menu. MY commitment to their bedtime.
Seriously, my kids are just as crabby on Monday if they have junk cereal or homemade low fat ... anything... with a side of serious fruit and a big old glass of milk. Mornings suck. Having kids that are late risers is a blessing and a curse. Three days to go and I get to shut the stupid alarm clock off for most of the summer.
My breakfast? Coffee. There's milk in it so it counts. That's two food groups right there. Beans and dairy.
Macboy mentioned this the other day, and it's had my head spinning since, that he loves weekends cuz there's only really 2 meals a day. "Something like lunch or breakfast or both, and supper." He's right. I don't have a structured game plan. My kids eat when they are hungry. And if left to graze through out the day they do make healthy choices. They will eat broccoli over chocolate, they will pick the candy of the candy apple and eat the apple. (Seriously, it almost hurt the first time I saw that. We PAID for that candy crap! I could have bought a bag of plain apples for the same price.)
Back to spinning heads. I do have a habit of beating myself up over silly things like this. I was pounded with bad mommy guilt when he said that. Really? I only feed you twice a day? But look at my kids. They are perfectly FINE. I am letting myself off the hook on this one too. My kids eat well. And I know that they are not junkfood junkies, because I see them make good choices.
I can try to force them to learn good eating habits but they likely won't follow those same rules when they leave home. I didn't. Most of us say "I can't wait til I live on my own and can eat what I want when I want." Right?
So my confession here is pretty simple. My kids eat junk breakfast cereals. But only in moderation. Because I eat the rest before they get back to it!