That is the question being asked every afternoon and I have no idea why they do that because we. have. dinner. every. night. It's almost as if they are hoping to skip that meal!
No chance in my books even though I have been been tempted on numerous occasions to skip that last meal of the day because of the antics that come my way, sometimes.
Dinner time for most families is also one of the most stressful times of the day because we are all tired. I have been assured by mothers with older children that the dinner time antics do. not. end. GREAT.
Here are our rules of engagement at dinner time:
- We sit at the table
- We eat the same dinner
- The children receive dessert of fresh fruits when they have finished their dinner
- The children will also receive a bonus of a single marshmallow each when they finish their dinner and dessert of fresh fruits
- If dinner is not (mostly) consumed, no dessert and definitely no bonus because if you don't mostly finish your dinner, that means, you are not hungry so you don't get anything else. That's our explanation to the children.
- If the child throws a tantrum for not being offered dessert and bonus, she / he is sent to their bedroom to sit on their couch and wait for bath time.
My children know that we stand by those rules and they cannot pit one parent against the other. It is like Fort Knox between the husband and I. Most of the time, the children will eat up their dinner and they always enjoy their dessert and bonus. For the times that they don't, they KNOW they get nothing else.
What about you? How do you tackle the dinner time antics?