Category Archives: Uncategorized

Picky? Puhleez!

Yep, I post lots of healthy eating recipes and ideas. HOWEVER, this mummy has a very good message here. It is hard to think “healthy” all of the time when you know your child has sensory aversions to most foods. At Play with Food Classes, we try different approaches to see where the selected fruits and vegetables lie on the steps to eating hierarchy for your child. We want you to learn where your child is at and we want you to have a happy mealtime when you find that understanding.
This is a US Blog so some of the terminology is different to what we may use. If you have any questions, contact me ( or ph: 0402696928)
🙂 Simone

Sensory Speak

This will probably be my 2nd biggest blog post to date. It’s going to offend some, but hopefully educate others. This post is long overdue, but especially needed in the “picky eating” community. Tread with caution. This post will consist of my own words, but it’s the thoughts and overall experiences of my 7 year old daughter, B, and may other children like her who have challenges eating everyday foods. I will also be standing up for the “picky” eater parents who struggle with their own issues regarding this topic. Stepping into my big girl panties…

Picky eater. That word offends me beyond belief. I know it’s all over the internet. Many books, articles, and blogs have been written on the topic. Yet, picky eating doesn’t even begin to describe what my daughter and many other children like her deal with on a daily basis. It goes WAY beyond picky…

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EAF principle 3…

A thought provoking piece by Johanna Cormack. This is one part of Emotionally Aware Feeding (EAF) and good reminder to think about parenting styles. Food encounters (both positive & negative) are very influential during your child’s eating journey, even away from meal times. Food encounters can be found everywhere!

Emotionally Aware Feeding

Background From Colorful Sweets Of Sugar Candies

Rewarding with food is standard parenting practice – for example, many parents use sweet treats to encourage their child to use the potty, or  to recognise good behaviour. This gives the child the following message: “I approve of you, and so you can have  sweet food” . To take it a step further, from the child’s point of view, it equates eating sweet food with feeling loved. EAF is all about separating food from feelings so that children eat for physiological rather than emotional reasons.

Rewarding with food  fuses food and feelings. 

Consider adult comfort eating

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Food Revolution Day 2014

Play with Food and Little People Nutrition will be getting together for an informal pot luck morning tea for Food Revolution Day 2014…. AND you are invited!

pot luck


For more information about Mandy & Little People Nutrition – have a look at her website!

Keep an eye out for pictures at the events via our facebook pages.

5 tips for “I’m hungry” complaints

The kids come home from school and wail “I’m Hungry”!

My daughter is only 2 years old and she is already getting in practice for her post-school “I’m Hungry” wails.  Is it built into kids to do this?

If you look at mealtimes across your day, you will see that going from lunch to dinner is a very expansive amount of time. Untimely grazing is the norm for many kids in the afternoon.  Grazing on inappropriate foods decreases a child’s appetite for dinner.  Also, if opting for quick and easy foods, it will unnecessarily increase sodium, fat and sugar intake.

Here are my 5 tips for nipping this afternoon ritual in the bud!  These tips when put in practice, have side benefits of: A) Decreased nagging B) Helping you keep your sanity C) A peaceful family dinner.

5 Tips for Handling the Afternoon "I'm Hungry" Wails by Play with Food (


#1: The Two Hour Rule

Afternoon tea has to be completed no less than 2 hours before your scheduled dinner.  So, if you eat at 6:30pm – do not allow the afternoon snack to go past 4:30.

#2: Be Prepared

This is essentially another meal opportunity that you are actively providing.  Don’t think of this as an inconvenience that the kids can just sort out & grab from the cupboard as they please.  Either prepare something ahead of time so it’s ready to go on time or get them to prepare it themselves with you when you get home.  In the picture , I have yoghurt, toasted oats and stewed fruit layered in a glass.   It’s super easy for the kids to make and covers off 3 food groups in one meal.

#3: Fix What’s Missing

This is your opportunity to fill in the nutritional gap in your child’s day.   If they are down on the recommended vegetable intake, use this as a vegie eating snack.  Likewise with dairy, fruit, protein or cereals.

For Australian readers, the Eat for Health website has easy to understand guidelines on what a child should be eating.  Use this website to help you work out nutritional gaps  in your childs typical diet and what an appropriate “serving size” is.

#4: Eat With Your Kids

Who says they are the only ones struggling to get from lunch to dinner time?  Its a great way for you to enjoy a nutritious snack and have some time to chat to the kids.  Role modelling the consumption of healthy foods is really important.   Don’t underestimate how much you can connect with your kids over a 5 minute snack shared together.

 #5: If all else fails….

Dinner is about 30 mins away but the wails continue – avoid sweet foods (yep, even fruit).  Sweetness suppresses the appetite and will leave you stranded with your lovingly prepared dinner & either a battle ensues or you just feel helpless.  Try giving a glass of water to make sure it isn’t thirst disguised as hunger and then assign some creative tasks to get them to help get dinner on the table – “Can you design us a centerpiece for the table tonight?”  Or (maybe less creative) “Can you please set the table?” Or “Can you taste test this sauce and tell me what it might need?”  Or “Try this carrot that I put into tonight’s curry.”

** BONUS**

A Plan Ahead Tip by Food Group:

Fruit:  Poach left over fruits & store them in an airtight container for during the week.  I stew all sorts of fruit with some cinnamon & a dash of vanilla extract – it doesn’t have to have lots of added sugar!  Remember that the cooking water holds nutrients too – so chill that and add it to a smoothie.

Protein: Make a chick pea hummus & store in an container in the fridge.

Vegetables: Vegies that cam be cut up and eaten raw include carrot, cucumber, cauliflower, broccoli, capsicum, snow peas, sugar snap peas, zucchini (peeled into ribbons), celery, tomatoes, fennel, cabbage, lettuces and green beans. Team these with a legume or nut based dip and you also get some beneficial fats and proteins into the day.

Dairy: Smoothies are a great way to blend fruit, vegies, cereals, nuts & seeds and dairy into one easy meal.   See this post of mine on green smoothies.  My daughter has been having rockmelon, spinach & chia  seed smoothies lately – what a powerful combination of food groups!  You can put all the ingredients for your smoothie into your blender, wack it in the fridge, do the school run and then blitz when you get home.

Cereals:  Cereals are a great base for adding other food groups.  Prepare ahead ideas include muffins that can be stored in the freezer & quickly defrosted.



Email Address

Hi Food Adventurers,

I am currently having difficulties with the email address – so in the meantime, please contact me on or PM me on Facebook or send me a tweet.    If you have submitted a form to register your interest in our programs over the past week, I probably haven’t received it – please shoot me an email if you are concerned.


A memo to all toddlers re. your diet

How to be a fussy eater
Hope you are having a great weekend!

Hurrah For Gin

I’ve noticed an alarming trend at pre-school, some of my fellows seem to be eating what is presented to them on their plates without query. I have also witnessed some voluntary consumption of vegetables. It makes me sick.

Take heed people, follow these simple rules and exert some fricking authority!

  • Set the tone – spend a week detoxing on jam toast.
  • Refuse anything but Cheerios for breakfast. Have them without milk on Mondays, Thursdays and every other Friday. Hyperventilate if they get this wrong.
  • Don’t try anything new EVER.
  • Just because you liked something yesterday does not mean you have to like it again today. It is perfectly acceptable to change your mind and you do not have to explain yourself.
  • Fruit as a pudding is bullsh*t.
  • Be suspicious of anything that was recently alive. Beige, dead looking stuff is safer.
  • Request a wide variety of food at the supermarket…

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