We're just getting in to the joyous stage of the almost-toddler starting to refuse certain foods, generally on principle because what she doesn't like one day she will adore the next
I'm not sure how much choice to offer, though, if one bit of food is refused. For example, yesterday at lunch she only picked at her main, then refused the extra veg (normally a huge favourite) and ate the usual yoghurt dessert. As she had barely eaten anything I have her some rice cakes as well. We were thinking that if she refuses the main food, then what she gets eventually offered instead is much less 'interesting', though I don't know if that's the right approach. But when she finally got down from the highchair (having thrown a lot of the rice cake on the floor) she was clearly still very hungry, crying for food, and too unsettled to be left, so I gave her some fruit which she ate loads of.
She's 15mo and though she still loves her milk, she only has 14oz a day and it is well spaced out away from her meals. I don't mind her not eating much if she's just not hungry, but I'm not sure what's the best approach if she is hungry but is determindly rejecting everything that is offered. Any tips would be great, thank you!
With DS (13mo) nothing different is offered. There's a main, and then fruit and/or yoghurt. The fruit and yoghurt is part of the meal so I don't 'withhold' it if the savoury part isn't eaten. I don't offer anything else though - so if the pasta is left, I don't make toast for example.
Same as Fliss - main meal followed by yogurt or fruit regardless of how much of the main meal he's had. I don't offer any alternatives if he doesn't eat what's offered. After all, what seems like a boring alternative to us might be a treat for them!
Generally, when I get him down from the table when he's not eaten much, he's absolutely fine, suggesting he isn't that hungry. Once, when he'd refused his main meal and just had yogurt, he made it clear he was still hungry so I offered the main meal again and he ate some, so he was definitely testing me. (And yes, DS, I won that particular battle...I'm such a child!)
I think I was just stuck yesterday - she'd made enough of the mess of the main meal for me not be able to offer it again. I did the whole 'you have curry, yoghurt and veg, and that's your meal' but it just went a bit wrong. We had this the other week when she refused most of her lunch and seemed fine, and then an hour later was crying for food. So I really do have to give her something otherwise she won't nap etc, but it's not exactly possible to rehash the main meal, if that makes any sense?
You're right, though, maybe she wanted rice cakes all along!