One of my proudest moments was watching my mother carry the Olympic Torch for the Salt Lake games. OK, I wasn’t really watching, I was snapping photos, cheering, smiling, and running ahead to snap more photos. It was a great experience which was all thanks to my sister, who mobilized a number of family and friends to nominate my mom, largely in appreciation for her great work as a hospice nurse. I’ve always loved the symbolism of the flame passing from person to person across such a great distance, as thousands of torches, and thousands of small touches, add up to a great collective journey and accomplishment.
As a parent foodie it makes me think about how we and others influence our kids in little ways each day. A long chain of influences and personal choices has led each of us to where we are today. And we in turn can make a great impact, through small daily steps like serving the kids a really tasty salad with enthusiasm and high expectations that they won’t turn up their noses. Hopefully that will counteract other influences, like a sibling’s chant for gum, a candy bar commercial, or even a Homer Simpson impersonation by me (“Mmmm, Dooooonuuuuuts”) in a moment of
honestyweakness. Every little “touch” counts. My five year old recently went on a health kick when her preschool spent a day discussing healthy food. She talked about it nonstop for days, and together with her big sister they made a book entitled “Helfy Food / Not Helfy Food.” If you’ve seen Eat This Not That, it’s the same idea only with cuteness. What surprised me, really, was the sudden impact her teachers had on her mindset, even though they were simply reiterating the eating principles we’ve discussed with them for years. Parents aren’t enough. It takes a village, and all that.
Torches and touches
How are you or others around you positively influencing eating habits? What are the threats or negative influences which most concern you? And what do you like best, helfy food or not helfy? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.