The mother of three reveals the trick to getting kids to eat their veggies.
6:12 a.m. There are two things I can count on in the morning: One, my son Julian (the middle child) will wake me up before I am ready. And two, all three of my kids (ages 2, 4 and 6) will be hungry for breakfast.
6:45 a.m. For breakfast I try to pack in as much nutrition (i.e., pureed healthy foods) as possible, which is the basis for my new book, Deceptively Delicious: Simple Secrets to Get Your Kids Eating Good Food ($25, Collins). I make pancakes with hidden sweet potato, or oatmeal with hidden pumpkin and a little brown sugar and cinnamon. Berries are on the table while they wait.
7:10 a.m. I have a red grapefruit and a cup of coffee with soy creamer ... and the kids' leftover oatmeal and pancake scraps while we're cleaning up.
8:30 a.m. On a typical Saturday, we spend lots of time running around outside. During the week, my days are consumed with school commitments, play-dates and work for Baby Buggy, a nonprofit I started, which collects kids' gear for parents in need. So on weekends, I look forward to uninterrupted time with my family.
10:15 a.m. Snack time. We dip apple slices into natural peanut butter, and the kids pour some dry healthy cereal into little bowls (this can get messy, but the rule is they have to clean up messes with a mini dustpan, or there's no more self-serve). And they get lots of water and cold, low-fat milk--I find that when kids say they're hungry, sometimes they're actually thirsty.
1 p.m. I make mini pita pizzas with hidden spinach (a five-minute meal!), and we eat carrots and cucumbers dipped in low-fat sour cream--and more apples.
3:30 p.m. Self-serve snack time again. We have low-fat graham crackers and string cheese.
5:45 p.m. Sometimes the kids eat dinner first, and then Jerry and I eat later on. But I'm only willing to cook one meal, so it has to be good for all of us--like homemade chicken nuggets with broccoli puree hidden in the batter, or multigrain pasta with some plain pasta mixed in (to make it seem like "regular" pasta) and baby carrots and string beans.
7 p.m. After dinner, it's our Saturday Night Dessert Party. I usually try to limit sugar, especially at night, because it leads to wild behavior and blown bedtimes. But Saturdays are special, so I make oatmeal raisin cookies and put out lemon sorbet or vanilla ice cream and shredded coconut.
8:30 p.m. The kids are asleep (or in bed, at least), and Jerry and I eat the chicken nuggets, remade into chicken parmesan. I pour marinara over them, add low-fat mozzarella and whole wheat pasta, and presto! I've made his favorite meal. I chop up a salad of romaine and red and green peppers. Done--and so good for you.