Wednesday, November 21, 2007

food for thought

The Spud has his appetite back. It’s hard to imagine my little larded roastie suffering from a desire not to eat but there he was, mouth clamped firmly shut refusing all food, even scrambled eggs which the spud NEVER refuses.

First we had the cold and then croup and then flu and then no Papa Frog for 5 days then a molar and then jet lag and then another cold and no Papa Frog for another 7 days and then walking and then another molar and then more jet lag and then another molar and then a cold and then another molar - and all over a 3 week period. In this three weeks he’s had 3 colds, cut 4 molars, learned to walk, gone to Canada, missed his Dad and been very sick. He was becoming extraordinarily un-spud-like – one might even have used the word 'lithe' – and I got a cross-channel bollocking from Grandmère on the subject because while French Women Don’t Get Fat, apparently French babies are supposed to be rolling in the stuff.

Anyway, now that the Spud has surmounted all his trials and unglued himself from his father’s trouser legs, he has re-discovered the joy of food. Pasta, potatoes, fish fingers, scrambled eggs, baby chilli, sandwiches, bananas, chicken, parsnips, peas, the lot. Further, he’s decided that being fed is for babies and since, according to one of the hundreds of toy catalogues that seem to have gotten my name on their envelopes he is no longer a baby but a ‘wobbler walker’, he insists on feeding himself.

This isn’t quite the disaster that I would have imagined it to be. Yes, he is only 14 months old and hasn’t got what one would call total (or even, sometimes, partial) control of his digits but he also hates to be messy. This is a child who will spend three minutes trying to lick a bit of food off his chin rather then let me just wipe it off. So, I can leave him parked in front of his dinner and he normally manages to get three quarters of it into him, which is highly gratifying given the care and attention I lavish on his gastronomic needs.

The other quarter, however, goes into the cat. This is not because Sammy is up on the table demanding a tithe with his claws out, or because the spud only has a 75% food-to-mouth success ratio. No, this is because the spud adores Sammy and has cottoned on to the fact that Sammy hangs around waiting for food to drop – so he feeds him. There we were yesterday, the spud stabbing away at the eggs with his baby fork and wrangling it to his mouth, me standing back adoringly thinking all sorts of insipid Motherhood things about how big and clever my son is when he put down the fork, grabbed a handful of egg, leaned back in his chair, waited for Sammy to look up and laconically tossed him the eggs. Then, he calmly resumed feeding himself with a new rhythm – two mouthfuls for the spud, one for Sammy.

This naturally made Sammy very happy, as he has a thyroid problem and basically needs his own fridge to get him through the day. This made the spud happy because he was getting Sammy’s undiluted attention rather then seeing nothing but a fuzzy little cat-butt disappearing from under his grasping fingers.

The only trouble here is that we are trying to break our deaf, 16-year-old rescue cat from what is likely the begging habit of a lifetime and he already sees the spud as a source of extra meals. I say ‘we’ however the Frog is also feeding the cat off his plate so I suspect, as in many things these days, like insisting the spud go directly to bed after his book and not play on the floor with his father for another hour, I am alone.

Still, he’s eating again and when he sits on the floor with his little belly out he looks like my very own laughing baby Buddha. I hope Grandmère will be happy. Now excuse me, I have to run out and buy cat food.

33 comments:

Jen said...

I didn't realize the Spud and Dylan are so close in age. What do I have to look forward to in 2 months? I'm glad he is finally feeling better. Hope it stays that way. Happy Thanksgiving.

Suki said...

So glad he's doing better!

Wish you could snap a picture of him feeding the cat - it sounds so very very sweet!
Much hugs and kisses to Charlie :)

Jennie said...

Yes yes, pictures please! Something that will embarrass him in ten years time would be great.

So, does Grandmère give you les bolloques en francais, ou? My own mother-in-law just sends me mails describing what she's having for lunch...

Anyway, that's the way it goes with those kids. They get all roly poly, then they grow a head overnight and look like a beanstalk. Then they get all chubbly wubbly again. Hope your bout of sicknesses and missing frogs is over!

Elsie Button said...

what a generous little chap for sharing his food! really made me laugh. you wouldn't catch betty sharing her food with ANYONE. glad he's over all his colds etc etc.

Self employed mum said...

You are soooo funny, glad he's feeling better, my 2 always got horrific colds when they were cutting teeth. Grandmere should be happy with her little buddha. x

Musical Midnight said...

Hi, Sparx. I've been following your blog for awhile, and only just now I've decided to come out of lurk-dom. I've enjoyed reading about the Spud's antics, and I tend to check back almost daily to see if anything new has been written.

I love the way you write about life; it makes me feel like I'm there with you. I giggled hysterically when you were relaying the story of his first walk, and the mystery of the vanished crayon. I don't have children of my own, but I do enjoy watching babies and toddlers figure out the world around them.

I'd like to invite you to come visit my blog, though there isn't much there, yet. I haven't gotten a knack for updating regularly, but I tend to post when I can. (when I'm not so busy reading everyone else's blogs!)

Jonny's Mommy said...

So glad your little spud is feeling better. We have been going through some similar things here..only I can't get the little one to eat anything but what the hubby calls "boob juice." We'll get there. he also feeds the dog, who is about as big as an average cat. Glad to have you back on.

lady macleod said...

Congratulations on living through the three weeks. We have all been there! I grant you it was much harder on you than the Spud, so don't worry.

I LOVE THE CAT STORY. Go Spud! I'm sorry but I'm on the side of the cat. I had the vision of a miniature Henry VIII tossing the egg from your description - I could just see Spud in the Royal Robes, crown askew, belly laugh flowing forth as he bestows scraps on his adoring public (the cat).

Sparx said...

Jen - I know - I actually thought they were closer for a long time! Good to see you!

Sparx said...

Thanks Suki! I've not been able to snap one yet but I'll put one up soon. Good to see you taking time from your intellectual pursuits!

Sparx said...

Jennie - thanks. He has grown another head recently as well. It doesn't say anything recognisable either but at least it's eating well! Good to see you.

Sparx said...

Elsie - yes, I get the impression that Betty is queen of the house! And good for her. Thanks for the good wishes, good to see you.

Sparx said...

SEM - thanks for that, it's true, he always does get a badly runny nose when a new tooth comes through. Good to see you!

Sparx said...

MM - thanks for de-lurking! We've all been kids and so I think it's all understandable! Keep up the blogging, it's gettin gstarted that's the hard part. Thanks for coming by!

Sparx said...

Jonny's Mom - sounds like our two are pushing out molarsa at the same time. Glad Jonny's ears are better. The Spud still wants boobs when he's ill too - when we will ever be free?! Good to see you.

Sparx said...

Lady M - I love the image of the spud as Henry VIII. Strangely, it's very appropriate... Good to see you!

Briget said...

Welcome to Mom-dom, yer doomed. The cat and the not-bedtime will win. but that's OK, you'll remember this stuff and trot it out at family dinners years from now (when everyone's already heard it)!

DJ Kirkby said...

Erm..if you buy cat food you just know the Spud is going to develop a taste for it! I have a pic of N3S at the same age, gleefully stuffing his mouth with hard cat food...yes I took the pic before removing the cat food from him... baaad mom....

Sparx said...

DJ - yes, he's already been sampling the wares! He takes the box out of the cupboard and plays with it. I found a few in his nappy once but I think he's decided they're inedible... at least I caught him spitting one out the other day...

ilana (Helen) Pengelly said...

dj your post reminds me of a story about my niece. Her Mum served her scrambled eggs when she was first learning to feed herself. She didn't want them so after several attempts to get her to eat her Mum put them in the cat's dish. We tried getting the baby to eat other foods but finally gave up and cleaned her up before putting her onto the floor to crawl. As soon as she touched the floor she beetled over to the cat dish and polished off the eggs!

Derric Peterson said...

I thought they were closer for a long time!

BOSSY said...

He was born an Animal Rights Activist.

Belle said...

Prepare to live like this forever :) Son and dad are a team, you're just the mascotte. *said the mum of a four year old son*

But isn't it wonderful to see your two 'men' get along so well?

Sue said...

Awww...

I haven't been brave enough to let The Bhablet loose on his own meals. Not much. For snacks I've let him munch his own finger foods. But mealtimes? He's so skinny anyway.

Help, I'm turning into a typical Bengali mother!

Sparx said...

Briget - so sorry, didn't see your post! Yes, I realise I am totally doomed... I can't wint at all. I like the idea of using it against them in the future though!

Sparx said...

Helen - that's really funny! I've got him to eat things before by pretending they were mine and not letting him have them for a while! Tricksy Mummies!

Sparx said...

Derric - who, Dylan and the spud? Not quite sure what you mean - thanks for dropping by though.

Sparx said...

Bossy - so long as he doesn't start spending his weekends chained to trees outside of farmyards I'm happy. Good to see you!

Sparx said...

Belle - yes it is good... I could use someone on MY side sometimes thought! Good to see you!

Sparx said...

Sue - LOL! Ah, you have to let them get their hands dirty at some point - maybe Bhablet will fatten up if you let him get his fists in his food! He doesn't look skinny, I'm sure he'd be fine! Besides, I do occasionally come by with a spoon and shovel in a few mouthfuls just to be sure...

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Amira Taylor said...


Nice post. I like the way you start and then conclude your thoughts. Awesome

Meggy Stewart said...

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