Mellow Mummy: Travel With A 1-Year Old: Foreign Food! : Taking life as it comes...

Monday 5 July 2010

Travel With A 1-Year Old: Foreign Food!

I'm not a fussy eater and when I go on holiday, I am usually more than happy to sample the local fare. Thanks to our approach to weaning, Lara will eat pretty much anything we give her, and at 12 months old, she requires little assistance at meal times. On our recent trip to the USA I was extremely grateful for the baby-led weaning approach but even so, I did struggle at times to find food that was suitable for Lara to eat.

We were staying in a small town in upstate New York, not too far away from civilisation. On one occasion, myself and Mr. B. went out exploring to find food for a light lunch – a picnic of sorts. The only food shop in the town was part of a petrol station. There were aisles and aisles of food, and even a deli counter – it seemed promising at first sight. And it would have been perfect if we fancied a carb-fest. Crisps, Pastries, Crisps, Breads, Nachos and more Crisps. The deli counter turned out to sell (a) sliced ham by the kilo and (b) processed cheese by the kilo – that is all. We quickly moved on.

We managed to find a local pick-your-own farm where we bought copious quantities of raspberries, blueberries and strawberries for Lara to devour (messily). A few miles further down the road we found a supermarket where we planned to stock up on soft drinks, bread, cold meat and cheese. That was easier said than done. The choices were endless. We finally plumped for ham that was marketed as 'without added hormone' and cheese that was marketed as 'deli slices' rather than cheese. With these things we hoped to provide Lara with a healthy, filling lunch.

Eating out wasn't much easier. Most of the places we visited served grease, with chips. Fresh, home-cooked food but always served with chips. Lara ate way too many chips that week. We did find one gorgeous modern restaurant who were happy to accommodate Lara. The menu was totally different to anywhere else we had been, the atmosphere was great but almost everyone else in the establishment was eating... chips.

The most horrific food moment was in a motorway service station on the way back to the city. In the UK, even in the grimmest of service stations, I would expect to be able to find something suitable to feed a toddler – low sugar, low salt and preferably bearing some resemblance to it's raw material be it animal or vegetable. At this service station though, we had the choice of coffee & muffins, bagels & ice cream or Macdonalds. There was NOTHING we could offer Lara. It was a good job that I had a banana stashed away in the changing bag.

On our travels we took with us the Totseat and the Brother Max Travel Weaning Bowl. I couldn't have managed without them.
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