Saturday, May 31, 2008

Been There, Chewed That

Or, "What Not To Do On A First Date"

Ethan has a new, erm, charming eating habit. He's developed a tendency to put something in his mouth, chew it for a considerable amount of time and then casually open his mouth and either go in for it himself, ever so generously handing it over to us, or he waits patiently for one of us to get the hint and pluck it from his mouth ourselves. This is not an attractive new table manner, obviously.

I don't know if he's part bird and acting out some ass-backwards instinct to provide US with his half digested food (let's take a moment to be grateful that he doesn't regurgitate, shall we?) or if he's simply trying to keep his lithe boyish figure and he's been watching too much America's Next Top Model for pointers, or what. Either way, ew.

I think the more likely explanation for this new "development" (and it's only occasional, really) is that in the last few weeks, Ethan's become more adventurous as an eater (read: is willing to eat more than frozen french toast and blueberries). In the past week, he's actually eaten entire sandwiches without stripping them for parts (meaning, the cheese) and leaving the rest. Thanks to his Monday and Friday mornings hanging out with Lilly, he's discovered a love of tater tots. There was also a mulberry picked off the ground incident (surprisingly he didn't try to get rid of that mid-chew). We have found that as of yet, there is no nasty reaction to peanut butter and he's a fan of salsa--apparently the spicier the better. He's also eaten entire plates full of steamed vegetables and last night our little shunner of all things meat took his first, second and third bites of a hamburger, to which Husband says, "Ha! Take THAT vegetarians everywhere!!"

So I guess it's not surprising that every once in awhile he's going to go out on a limb, chew something for a few minutes and think, "Um. Yeah, this is not food. Let's get this out of my mouth now." Think Tom Hanks in Big at the Christmas party, minus the frilly-shirted tux.

Sometimes, like tonight, I think he just gets a bit ahead of himself, now that he's also insisting on eating everything with a grown-up fork. On more than one occasion he's estimated the size of his mouth to be something just shy of Grand Canyon-esque and ends up with a bit more food in it that perhaps he should. So of course, some of it has to come out.

We're not encouraging it, but as long as there's more food making its way to his tummy than my hand (and he doesn't do it in public too much) I'm happy to wait out this food phase. I just hope it lets up before his first date--otherwise, can you say "awkward!!"


Becca said...

He eats vegetables? How did you do that? The last time Charlie willingly ate something green it was an enormous piece of brocoli tempura and I had to work to hide my astonishment as he ate every last morsel and asked for more. Maybe I should start frying them.

Alice said...

I can totally sympathize with you. My son absolutely refuses to eat anything that once had a pulse. However, recently the babysitter did inform me that he had several bites of KFC. Fabulous, just what I want him to eat. He also does the take a bite then if it's not what he's expecting, or if he crams too much in his chipmunk cheeks it all comes pouring out, hopefully into a waiting hand or napkin. Yeah, not so attractive. But I'm with you, he can't possibly live on marshmallows the rest of his life right?

Sarah said...

Eeeeeeeew. I just this minute cleaned a nasty chewed up ball of cheese of Harry's shirt-- he just spits it out all over himself. Blech.

Tress said...

"There's no goo!" said the new mother. And the lie was born.

Also, I think you should go ahead and dress E in a frilly shirt a la Tom Hanks. It might make the whole experience more tolerable.