Vegetarianism: How a Chicken Nugget Won My Heart

So….. Kristin and I discussed my writing a post about weaning as I am knee deep in the whirlwind of weaning Ellie off of nursing/bottles. Because you all, at this point, know us for our frankness (at least I hope we have not let you down yet) – I am going to be completely honest. I couldn’t write it. Not right now. It’s exhausted, my friends. I began to write the post a couple days ago and came back to it last night. As I reread my Pulitzer Prize-worthy writing, I was putting myself to sleep. My robotic writing only was further proof of my need to wait to write about this until I am done and I can laugh at all the trials and tribulations. For now, you get to hear about how at one time I planned to raise Ellie vegetarian until I hopped off my high horse and was swept off my feet by a chicken nugget. Sorry, Kristin, I am going off the rails this week. 🙂

In early 2018, I made the decision to go vegetarian. I, of course, have had meat a couple times, but for the most part I do follow a vegetarian diet. The reasons really are not important for this post, but this did present Zach and I with an interesting decision to make. Will Ellie be vegetarian? I was pushing for yes, Zach, being the good midwestern guy, was not on board. After going round and round, we decided that she would be vegetarian. It was pretty easy at first since so many purees are fruit or veggie based. Soon after our nemesis, Mister Yuck Face (see photo below), began coming around. At around 8 months old, Ellie began rejecting ALL purees. Ugh. She pretty much would only eat peaches. So I began getting creative. I spent so much time in the kitchen, specially cooking down veggies and fruits. In the end, her favorite things ended up being peanut butter, toast, Gerber puffs, peaches, and that’s about it. I didn’t fret about it since really she just needs breast milk up until she was one to get her full nutrition.

Fast forward to Ellie’s 12 month appointment. At that point I was still attempting to force feed her purees on top of breast milk, I started buying the really tasty fruit purees that I liked because I would end up finishing off what she wouldn’t eat (win win, amIright?). I talked to her doctor about her nutrition and that I am worried about feeding her enough. I discussed having Ellie follow a vegetarian diet and said that I am now leaning toward feeding her meat. Ellie’s doctor is vegetarian and was absolutely supportive of our choice to feed her meat, in fact, she said it will actually be much easier on us this way. What made me change my mind? To be honest, it is super easy to heat chicken nuggets and it takes far too long to cook lentils. Also – daycare does not offer a vegetarian menu and I am not about to brown bag it everyday. When you pay for daycare, you take advantage of ALL the benefits of daycare.

There are days, like today, that we incidentally fed Ellie vegetarian food, but it was not intentional. It’s just what I ended up making, and did not really think much of it. Today’s menu was:

Breakfast – Pancakes (frozen – yep, I’m not embarrassed to say I bought frozen pancakes)

Lunch – Hummus & pita, tator tots, and kiwi (hell yes, well-rounded)

Dinner – Mac & Cheese (I made this homemade, giving Martha Stewart a run for her money. Also – I have achieved my monthly domestic-goddess badge.)

Snacks – Gerber puffs (because if I didn’t, I am certain someone would riot)

The point of this is that as a mom, I have too many bees in my brain to make things harder than they need to be. Some days she is going to be picky and eat nothing. Some days I can only bring myself to microwave leftover pizza. But ya know what, I am fine with that. She’s getting fed and that’s what matters.

Peace out queens! Have a great week and eat some Ben & Jerry’s.


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