For a long time, Natalie ate little more than chicken nuggets (which I swore I would never feed her) and pasta. She did this both because I indulged her and because for a while I was a working mom and it was a battle I had neither the time nor the energy to fight. There were some random things that she would eat, outliers if you will. ANY type of cheese, hummus, broccoli, carrots, cucumbers, tomatoes, V8, eggs, and berries by the pint. I convinced myself that this made her diet well balanced.
When we were three, making two meals didn't seem like such a big issue, mostly because much of what Dan and I ate was prepared from the freezer section of Trader Joes. But now, my main job is to feed my family and making two meals is just too much. Not to mention the bro eats anything and everything.
At first I bribed Natalie with a Zhu Zhu pet, a little motorized hamster (which she saw an infomercial for). I told her that if she tried at least once bite of everything I made, I would buy her this silly little toy. Game on. For one week, she kept her end of the bargain and I kept mine and Fluffy the Zhu Zhu pet entered the home. Wouldn't you know that the bro is more interested in this hamster than Natalie is.
Once she got her prize, I began bribing her with money-- twenty-five cents for every bite. I think I lost, maybe two dollars because for the past four days she has eaten whatever it is that I made for dinner with no eye rolling, no tongue hanging out in disgust, and no throwing of the body onto the floor. Turkey Picadillo, Teriyaki Chicken Meatballs, Asian Turkey Meatballs, Salmon, Chicken Sloppy Joes, Linguine with Clam Sauce....