Happy Birthday, Let's Eat Junk


gimmesugarPick up time at my daughter’s nursery school is always hectic, but nothing like this. I could hear the shrieks from the sidewalk.

Walking into the church hall where her classes are held, the echo factor forced me to scrunch my shoulder up toward my ears. They were all on sugar overload. Oh yeah, and it was all my fault.

My daughter’s fourth birthday just so happened to fall on one of the days she attends nursery school, and I’d brought a cake in to celebrate. I cleared it with the teacher beforehand, and like Nan Mooney says in her Bad Parent essay here on Babble this week, “junk food is fun.”

It was her birthday, and I wanted her to have fun. Even if it meant another mom wagging her finger at me and telling me “it was your pound cake and frosting that did this!” She was joking – I think – her daughter had a to-die-for chocolate trifle at her party.

Even as a mom who is relatively lax on the sugar issue anyway (for many of the same reasons as Mooney, including my own battles with an eating disorder), I look at birthdays as the day you throw rules out the window. She ate yogurt for breakfast, but lunch was a hot dog and ice cream – a special treat at the ice cream stand in town. Dinner was starchy pasta (no whole grains tonight) in Mickey Mouse form covered in a rich homemade cheese sauce. We threw in ham and green beans to balance it out, but I’m aware I wasn’t going to win any big awards for my health-consciousness.

Do you let go of the rules on their birthdays?

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