The Clean Plate Club

healthy-vegetables.jpgDo y’all know a picky eater? I’ve never been a picky eater. Lordy, one look at me will tell you that! I’m a bona fide member of the Clean Plate Club. I’m happy to eat healthy vegetables and fruits, and I love my bacon, too! I’m not fond of “organ” meats, but other than that I’ll try darn near anything. Perhaps because of that I’m not as sympathetic as I should be when folks have strong preferences about their food. I can understand choosing foods because of health concerns, but other than that, it’s all fair game.

I didn’t have much problem with my children’s eating habits when they were growing up. They were willing to eat anything I put on their plates (they also ate Crayolas, dirt and cat food, but that’s another story). Well, they were willing to eat what I served until they became teenagers. Then, things got a little wacky at mealtime (actually, with teenagers things were wacky ALL the time). One boy eschewed meat and became a vegetarian and the other morphed into a rabid carnivore. At mealtime, I just had to make sure I had plenty of both vegetables and meat, but I never had to worry that there would be leftovers. They scarfed it all up.

If you parents of small children are worried about your children’s eating habits, don’t be. One of my boys, unbeknown to me, ate French fries (that’s all) for lunch every day for an entire school year. He grew up just fine.

Until I met my Sweet Spousal Unit (that would be my SSU), I hadn’t really had to deal with a picky eater. He would not call himself “picky,” he’d say “discriminating.” And, I have to tell you that I don’t care for discrimination of any kind—especially when it’s about my cooking! That boy is NOT a member of the Clean Plate Club, I guarantee! Unless, of course, the plate is filled with steak.

The first indication of his idiosyncrasies at mealtime came when we had a date and decided to sit at the Sonic Drive-In to have hamburgers and share an order of fries from the sack. I took a couple of bites of my hamburger, a sip or two of Coca Cola, and then I reached for a French fry. They were gone! He hadn’t taken a single bite of his hamburger and had eaten all the fries. When I called him on it, he was chagrined. No, he was mortified. He apologized profusely and explained that he always ate his vegetables first. His and mine!

It turns out that when he was a kid, he didn’t like vegetables and his Momma forced him to eat them. The only way he could make the mealtimes enjoyable was to save the meat for “dessert.” I can live with that, but don’t get my French fries, Big Guy! Since then, I’ve learned that if we “share,” I get my portion away from him!

sweetpotato.jpgIf that was the only “peculiarity” to his eating habits, I wouldn’t chide him. However, I noticed others when I started cooking for him. I absolutely love to eat a baked sweet potato that has a swimming pool of butter in the center of it. It’s part of what I want for my last meal before I leave this earth. My SSU cringes at the site of a sweet potato. He cannot look a sweet potato in the eye (so to speak). This man was born in Charlotte, North Carolina, so you would think he could eat sweet potatoes. I mean, it’s a “Southern thang” and all. But, nooo! He gags when I eat sweet potato in front of him. So, I sit behind him. He’s not gonna stop this gal from eating sweet potatoes. I think his problem is that he grew up in California! Those people out there don’t eat the same foods the rest of the Nation does.

It’s not just sweet potatoes, though, it’s anything yellow or orange. He’s not that fond of carrots (though he will eat them raw), nor does he love pumpkin, and prefers not to touch summer squash. In fact he doesn’t like squash of any kind. Dang! He sure cut into my repertoire of recipes.

He was not proud to partake of my pecan pie. He doesn’t like pecan pie! Incredible! In fact, he didn’t care for pie much at all until recently. I don’t know whether the “calf slobber” (meringue) bothered him, or what.

I fried okra for him, and at first he wouldn’t try it. Then, he smelled the bacon that I fry so that I have grease for the okra. He took a taste, and now I have to cook a double batch when I fry it. As long as I get my share, I’m glad that he learned to like it.


Recently, I made a BIG mistake. I mean HUGE. We went to eat at a Mexican food restaurant. My SSU never would eat guacamole. I didn’t mind, because if it came on a plate, he gave his to me. I ordered Guacamole en Molcajete (which basically means they prepare it at your table in a bowl that looks like a mortar and pestle). Since he didn’t like guacamole, I just placed a “half-order.”


Well, y’all I started wolfin’ that down, and I guess that when I moaned and my eyes rolled back in my head in ecstasy, my SSU thought, “I’ll have what she’s having!”

We fought tooth and nail until it was all gone.

I guess the “moral” to my story (if y’all think you need morals) is that if you have a picky eater in your family, don’t try to change them. If they won’t eat it, it leaves more for you!

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

The Parent Bloggers Network and Deceptively Delicious are sponsoring a Blog Blast writer’s contest this week. Do you have a picky eater in your family? If so, you might want to write about it and enter for a chance to win in a random drawing.

I’m hoping I have some luck with a random drawing. I entered a “judged” contest last week that was sponsored by Sick of Lawsuits. I told about a hemorrhoid cream. 😯 I haven’t heard who won. I sure wanted that money! Should I file a lawsuit, ya think? I don’t know, maybe I didn’t deserve it. There was some awesome competition. Check them out for a laugh:

A Few Moronic Warning Labels

A Pain In the What?

Come on Crayola; Is It Washable or Not?

Crazy Warning Labels

Damn! Adult Supervision Required?

Eww, Ouch, Yikes & Duhhhhh

I Am Not Making This Up

I Mean, For Reals, Y’all?

In a Word: Yes

Just in Case You Wanted to Shred Your Hair

Okay For Levitating, But Not Floating

Positive IQ Required

Really? It’s a Fish?

Shaken Not Stirred – With a Splash of Detergent

The Warnings I Have Forgotten to Pass On to the Children

Wacky Warning Labels

Warning! Not For Use By Idiots!

What!?! No Smoking Near Fireworks?

Wow, Ultimate Baby Wrap

  17 comments for “The Clean Plate Club

  1. October 26, 2007 at 9:38 am


    “I guess the ‘moral’ to my story (if y’all think you need morals) is that if you have a picky eater in your family, don’t try to change them. If they won’t eat it, it leaves more for you!”

    is the wisest thing I’ve ever read, lol!

    And yes, with some kids, putting ketchup or whipped cream on anything will get them to eat it. Even Brussels sprouts. With my daughter, it’s bacon. Not entirely healthy, but you gotta start somewhere.

    Also, it’s very true that most kids outgrow their pickiness, but some kids grow into it. Of course, we don’t call it pickiness. But have you ever tried to make a meal for friends who include vegans, carnivores, gluten-frees, dairy-frees, and someone can’t eat eggs or anything smoked? Give me a roomful of three year olds any day, lol. And adults aren’t as easy to hold down while you’re forcing a string bean in their mouth.

    Just kidding…I don’t do that.

    Great post! I really enjoyed reading it!

    Thanks for stopping by to read! 😆 You make me laugh thinking about a dinner party for friends! As we get older more of us have to limit our diets anyway. But, I had friends over and one was on South Beach Diet, another on Atkins, another Weight Watchers…sheesh! It’s easier just to have them bring their own meal. I’m glad you don’t force string beans down anyone’s throat. The visual image is frightening!~skt

  2. October 26, 2007 at 9:48 am

    My DH is the picky eater at my house too. No avacados for him! LOL

    Found you via the blast. My entry is here:

    Yours is a good entry, Mama K! I like that you don’t force your kids to eat…and you reminded me that I don’t like sushi! :lol:~skt

  3. October 26, 2007 at 9:56 am

    Well I’m a super picky eater. But it’s not like I bother others with it. I will try anything once – but for the most part, I know what foods ruin the flavor of my meals, I know what textures gross me out and I can do just fine picking something from almost any restraunt.

    If I’m the one eating it, why does anyone else in this entire world have to care about it – it’s noone’s business but my own!!

    Yes, I’m very tired of being discriminated against for my eating habits and I just don’t understand why others worry about what I, me, myself, not them, eat.

    Other than that, sorry I haven’t been around lately – things have been crazy for me – I hope all is well with you!!

    Take Care,
    Frigga 🙂

  4. October 26, 2007 at 10:30 am

    My ex-husband was a picky eater (still is, so when he comes to visit the kids (adults, now) and grandkids and I have to cook for him, I try to keep that “somewhat” in mind. My youngest was the picky eater in my house -wouldn’t, still won’t -eat onions. The little 4-year-old granddaughter has some food issues but she is also autistic so Gram has had to revamp some of her feeding theories when she cooks these days. I used to tell my kids “sit up, shut up and eat; I’m not running a freaking restaurant here so you eat what gets put on the table.” I refused to fix double-type entres then but now, with the granddaughter and her issues, I find myself fixing one thing for the family and something else that will work for her. Ah the changes we make with age and also, for grandchildren, huh?

  5. October 26, 2007 at 2:21 pm

    Oh, now you’ve got me craving sweet potato fries. Mmm. And guacamole? My husband makes it, and my daughter learned, too. Yum. I think we’d like each other, if we didn’t fight over who gets the good foods. 😀

  6. October 26, 2007 at 3:05 pm

    Yes! The husband is definitely the pickiest of our bunch, yet he pretends that he isn’t.

    Me: “What do you want for dinner?”
    Him: “Whatever”
    Me: “Indian? Chinese? Italian? … French? Japanese?”
    Him: “No, no, no… no, no”
    Me: “Okay, what do you want?”
    Him: “Chicken.”
    Repeat every night.

  7. October 26, 2007 at 3:58 pm

    My 9 year old hates vegees. He can’t leave the table until they’re gone. Some nights he’s there hours.

  8. October 26, 2007 at 4:51 pm

    Oh M’ God ! There has never been an avocado that should go uneaten

    Strange food stories (told on my blog that others may have missed). When my mother took me to a Chinese New Year’s celebration and the filled chopsticks came towards my five year old face with, “Here honey, try the octopus”

    Advice to younger parents: Just put it on their plates. If they get hungry enough they WILL eat. Absolutely no one has ever died of starvation in the presence of even disliked food.

  9. October 26, 2007 at 5:50 pm

    I love the morale of this story. I agree with it too. What an excellent post. Have a great day. 🙂

  10. October 26, 2007 at 9:51 pm

    Leon is the picky one… more about quality than what it is, though he only tried fried okra for the first time last week! I’m still not sure why he gave in after all those years and tried it… hmmm. Guacamole made at the table? I’m there, I only recently started eating it, not that I am picky, just never was around it until we moved to WA.

  11. October 26, 2007 at 10:09 pm

    You have just described my husband!

    He loves steak.

    Hates onions. (I love them. And hello? Most recipes call for them.)

    And he, too, can’t stand sweet potatoes.

    How can you not like something that can be all sugared up in a variety of ways. I do not understand.

  12. October 27, 2007 at 6:29 am

    I have a whole houseful of picky eaters! I think I am the least picky one in the house as far as foods go, but I am picky about how things are cooked and/or seasoned. Not a fan of spices…..

    Your quacamole pictures are making me drool! LOL That is absolutely one of my most favorite foods. I just love avocados no matter what you do to them!

    Sweet potatoes are wonderful, too! My hubby makes me this bourbon mashed sweet potato dish that he saw Emeril make on food Tv. It is fantastic! He won’t eat it, though…LOL


  13. October 27, 2007 at 6:15 pm

    I just love really all the things you have on your site. 😀 I guess my husband and I love a lot of the same foods except he will not eat hominy because his mother made him eat it when he was a boy and he would get sick from eating it and now he doesn’t even won’t to smell it. I do like hominy but never have it since we eat out all the time and there are not many places that ever have it. Oh well, life goes on… 🙄

  14. October 28, 2007 at 8:55 am

    wow that sure look sumptous! its making me hungry now. I am definetly not a picky eater myself. I love food too.

    Love yah Shelly.

  15. JAM
    October 29, 2007 at 10:56 am

    I love how picky eaters call themselves discriminating. My Mother In Law was the most pessimistic person I ever met; of course she referred to herself as a realist. Yeah, right.

    That guacamole looks good.

    My Big Sis once made the mistake of calling an avocado a guacamole in our presence; we haven’t let her live it down. We’ve even gotten in the habid of calling them guacamoles ourselves without thinking.

  16. October 30, 2007 at 6:36 am

    Shelly, I never thought of it quite that way. Leaves more for me. A whole new spin on picky eaters. And, if we ever go out for dinner together, we’ll have to get a triple batch of that avocado stuff.

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