I am looking for brand enthusiasts who love Dylbug! I am offering a 2 month arrangement for 40% off any mealtime sets. The Brand Enthusiast is required to purchase a minimum of 1 set (plate + cutter) and a maximum of 5 full sets within the one week of getting their discount so they have something to photograph during the 2 months. This is in exchange for a minimum of 4 quality photos per month (8 total photos) posted on Instagram and a minimum of 2 videos of you or your child using your set on Instagram stories. Enthusiast is welcome to share on Facebook as well but not required. Photo ideas include their child/children using their Dylbug sets (eating or dressing them up with food) healthy meals or snacks on their plate(s), flat lays or even Instagram stories of using their sets. All photos and stories need to be tagged with @dylbug_ and #DylbugDrivers or #DylbugDressUp.
Please only apply if you have an active PUBLIC Instagram account, can commit to a minimum of 4 quality photos per month that are divided into 4 separate posts and are genuinely excited about representing Dylbug. This collaboration will run from November 1-December 31 . You will also help spread the word on sales, Dylbug's monthly theme and new designs. In addition you will get a 10% discount code to use and share with friends and family. You will also get 5% "Dylbug Dollars" back on all sales I receive with your unique discount code. So the more you spread the word, the more store credit at Dylbug you make. You will also get to join my private Dylbug enthusiast Instagram group to connect with other parents. This is not a competition so please understand that I am giving you a discount as payment for our agreement not for winning a competition. Only apply if you are dedicated in committing to the agreement.
7 Fun Ways to Get Kids to Eat Carrots
As parents, we have our fair share of difficult tasks – from getting our children to brush their teeth to getting them to go to sleep at bedtime to having them do their homework before playtime.
But, I think one of the most difficult things to do as a parent occurs when it comes to mealtime…
Trying to get our children to eat vegetables.
Some kids love them, but unfortunately, most kids hate them. And, at mealtime, a picky child can be quite a task to conquer. Between the fussing and the refusal, I have easily given in my fair share of times and thrown my hands up – figuratively – when it came to getting my kids to eat vegetables.
But, thankfully, I finally discovered that if you just get a bit creative with it, sometimes you can convince them to give in – so, there are sometimes when you win!
Here are a few fun ways I found worked when trying to get my kids to eat carrots:
1. Make the setting fun.
When kids see vegetables on a boring plate, they just get bored. They already don’t want to eat the vegetables, but if it isn’t fun then they really aren’t interested… But, that is where Dylbug plates come in! By incorporating a fun and personalized plate you can almost turn eating into a game for your child. I always like to tell my children there is a pretty picture underneath just waiting to be uncovered. If you really want to make it fun, give them the carrots and have them place them on the plate along the drawing then encourage them to eat them to get the picture back.
2. Make it look like dessert.
Aside from making it look fun, another great way to get your kids to eat carrots is to disguise them. My kids love mini carrot cheesecakes and they have no idea it isn’t just a sweet treat! Of course, this isn’t the healthiest form of carrots because they aren’t in their raw state, but if you really have a picky eater on your hands, this is far better than nothing.
3. Create fun shapes.
Kids are just naturally attracted to things that look cute – for example, dinosaur shaped chicken nuggets. While carrots aren’t very malleable, you can combine them with other vegetables to make something. For example, I use a carrot stick as the tree trunk and add a piece of broccoli to the top for a treetop – then, we have a vegetable forest!
4. Make them your sous chef.
I know, bringing kids in the kitchen can be scary – all you can think about is the huge mess that awaits you. But, sometimes it might be your best option for getting them to eat vegetables. I have learned that if I have my kids help me cook the carrots, they are more likely to eat them because they want to try what they have made. Then, they feel like they are choosing to eat them rather than being made to eat them.
5. Feed them to everyone.
Of course, you should be eating your carrots right along with the kids, but what about their favorite dolls? We try to avoid bringing toys to the table, but every now and then we will have a special occasion. My kids and I like to do a veggie tea party where we all – dolls included – have our veggies for the day. When you show them that their dolls are eating their veggies too, they don’t want to be
6. Make it a game.
Especially when they don’t want to eat them, counting down how many they have left seems to help. It can help to make a game out of it – for example, I will give my kids a few different vegetables all mixed together and they have to separate them into groups by color and then count them down as they eat them.
7. Reward their success.
Last but not least, a little bribery never hurts.
I actually keep vegetable themed stickers around the house and they get to add one to our “healthy eating” chart each time they finish their vegetables. Then, it gives them an incentive to finish their plate. I know as a parent sometimes it can seem like an impossible task to get your children to eat vegetables… But, try and try again – you will get there and hopefully, these fun tips will help you.
By Annabelle Short, writer for Wunderlabel
Hello, I am Kim, a pediatric Occupational Therapist and Mommy to my preschool daughter -Kendall. One area we support as Occupational Therapists is with mealtime and feeding skills. I am especially passionate about supporting families with feeding needs as I myself was a picky eater as a child, and my daughter had reflux as a baby and had many feeding issues…I understand from both sides how frustrating and stressful mealtime can be.
I am loving Leslie’s Dylbug plates and food cutters as a great strategy and tool for supporting mealtime fun with picky eaters and encouraging food exploration!! I wanted to share with you some steps I have found helpful when introducing a non-preferred or new food to your child to encourage a stress free mealtime experience…
Step 1-Tolerate a new food on your plate-changing one food item on your plate is a good start with introducing a new food. Your child will then see and smell the new food. I would recommend keeping everything else the same-preferred foods, familiar plate, cup, etc. If your child does not tolerate the new food on their plate, that is OK, start with tolerating it on the table or even smelling it in the kitchen or on other’s plates is a good start.
*Depending on your child and their feeding needs, new foods might be a similar food to a preferred food, or it may be a preferred food prepared in a new way, for example, say your child likes apples, you could try applesauce or pears.
Step 2-Once your child has tolerated the food item on their plate or in close proximity, the next step would be touching and
interacting with the food. There are so many fun ways you can incorporate touching food into play, below are some activity ideas:
-move the food item from one side of plate to another, or to a new bowl
-veggie art stamping-use cut veggies and dip in ketchup/mustard or paint (see pic)
-putting food items on Lego trains or any train/car toys and transport around or put car items in food item (i.e., roll over cooked pasta or refried beans to make tracks) yes, its OK to get messy!
-feeding puppets-a great way to model they can taste and spit out food if they don’t like it
-have a “pretend” picnic, lay a towel on ground and have child pass food out and put on plates
-cookie cutter play with food (ie: cheese) to make designs
-food designs with toothpicks (ie: cheese cubes, grapes)
-cutting softer foods with scissors
-decorating Dylbug plates with food
-helping with meal prep
*If your child is adverse to touching the food you can provide them with a protective barrier to start with-i.e. put food in cupcake holder, or touch item when in a zip lock bag
Step 3- Kiss the food- usually the more solid the food the easier it is, as the more wet the texture will stay on your lips. When the kids I work with are at this step I often will have them kiss the food item goodbye and move it from their plate to another bowl next to their plate. You can also do “crumb kisses” where you smush a cracker like food (i.e.: saltines, graham crackers) and put lips to the food item and then look in mirror…kids often think this is hilarious!
Step 4 –Lick the food item-again, the more solid the food, often times the easier this is, you can use similar strategies to step 3.
Step 5-Taste the food-first have your child put the food on tongue and spit out. Have a napkin ready….then put on tongue, chew and lastly swallow the food. For this step, use of dippers can sometimes be helpful (i.e.: use of peanut butter, ranch, ketchup, yogurt, or any item that your child might be comfortable with.) Also, changing up the “size of bite” start with modeling a “baby bite, bird bite, dog bite, lion bite, elephant bite” and encourage your child to do the same as tolerated.
I have also used games for all the above steps as well. I love Leslie’s “eat the rainbow game,” which could also be used for the touching, kissing, and licking stages. I have also recently found some fruit related games (fruit stacking wooden balancing game, Fruitominoes) which could be tied to touching/kissing/tasting fruits as well.
Most importantly I truly believe in the “get permission” approach to feeding, meaning if your child is turning away (head and body) with their mouths closed, this is their body clue indicating that they do not want to try it, please do not force feed! Eating has a strong emotional component, so we want to strive for an enjoyable and stress free mealtime experience. If your child is turning away from a certain food at any step, I would recommend going back a step and trying again another day, or trying another food. Also, I would recommend having the parent or caregiver model and start with each of these steps/ activities and encourage other siblings to participate as well, many kids learn through others and like the group experience.
I hope you have found this information helpful, please keep in mind that every child is different and unique with their feeding needs and that these are general suggestions. If you have any feeding concerns with your child, I would recommend consulting with your Pediatrician or a pediatric Occupational Therapist or Speech and Language Pathologist with feeding expertise for further support.
Go visit Kim Heyer on instagram at @preferredtherapytoys
I'd choose fruit ninety nine percent of the time over any other snack I can think of. I look so forward to Summer when it's a little easier to get all of our favorites. Thankfully my daughter has always loved fruit too so I spend a lot of time making "fruit bowls" around here.
I wanted to make it a little more fun and use our cat plate to make the afternoon fruit snack time more exciting. Her cousin was here for a play date so it's was the perfect opportunity. She'd never seen the plate or dress cutter so it was pretty exciting to her.
I kicked the girls out of the kitchen while I worked on their surprise. They kept trying to sneak back in of course. I make sure to save all of the extra fruit, even the berries and other things that have had shapes cut out for the girls to use on their own.
When I had the cat ready for them to eat I also set the scrap bowl on the table between them. As they're eating the fruit dress on the cat they can move things around and come up with their own creations. Great right? Keeps them busy, allows them to imagine something new and they're getting a snack that's healthy. Plus I only had to fix one snack.
The first thing they came up with was a princess ballerina... see the cutout berry top? Even naturally scalloped at the top, funny how I would have never thought of that. The second dress up costume they made was a clown. I love the raspberry nose and the fact that someone took a bite out of the tutu. Lastly they made a mermaid. Most of the fruit was eaten at this point so they didn't have as much to work with. They were also thinking of other foods they could use for their next mermaid creation. Turkey meat, goldfish, cheese, etc.
I love making them smile with a few extra minutes of work. This plate is so much fun, we're so happy to have found them. Maybe next time I'll try some veggies. With these two the only chance I'd have at getting them in their bellies would be if they could play dress up again.
Go visit Dani Heart on instagram at @Simplymamabear
Autism, SPD, and feeding issuesAs you may know, something my boys struggle with is eating. Charlie is okay at feeding himself… Well, he understands the concept of using a spoon or a fork ,but what a mess! If you come by our house after a meal, it looks like a scared raccoon got trapped in the fridge and fought his way out. Crumbs everywhere, yogurt smushed in the carpet, ketchup splatter on the walls… You know what I’m talking about. Anyway, the main issue with Charlie is actually getting him to try new foods and textures for the first time. He’d be happy to just eat toast and bacon for the rest of his life, but unfortunately that’s not an option.
Jude’s feeding issues are different than Charlie’s but they’re improving. He’s definitely adverse to trying new foods and he has this quirk of gagging on many textures. Right now, with his therapists, we’re focusing on Jude sitting at the table and exploring different foods by playing with them. The goal is to make feeding fun. We’ve tried singing and playing with the food but progress is slow.
I was at my wits ends so I searched the web for a solution and came across this company, Dylbug. They make incredibly cute baby plates. Jude loves animals so I figured I’d give them a shot. A key thing about Dylbug plates is the food cutter they sell with it that makes food-clothing for your animals. How fun is this? Jude actually loves it. It helped with step 1 of the feeding process: touching the food.
Where it gets even better is that Jude now enjoys meal time. He happily sits at the table with us and yells “MEOW” when we tell him it’s time to eat, all because he wants the cat plate with his name on it.
I knew it’d be more challenging with Charlie. It’s hard to get him interested in anything but he does love lions. That’s why I got the lion plate and placemat for him. He likes to look at his new set so it helps him stay put at the table while we’re having dinner. He’s pretty inconsistent with trying new healthy foods but I didn’t expect a miracle.
How to use Dylbug as a teaching tool?
Another great thing about these Dylbug plates is that they are a great tool to teach children about generalization. Children with autism often struggle in that area, as well as being overly rigid. For instance, Charlie won’t eat toast unless it’s perfectly square. His rigidity is the cause of many tantrums. His therapists try to work on flexibility as much as they can. Toast won’t always be cut perfectly square, and it won’t always be the same brand. This is just a little anecdote but when I used the Dylbug food cutter to make a lion outfit, Charlie actually ate it.
These plates are also good for pretend play. This is linked to generalization, the ability for a child to see more than the actual object in front of him. Special needs children often can play less and demonstrate fewer varied pretend play behaviors than children with typical development. This is a very advanced skill for a child like Charlie so I didn’t get a chance to test it out but it worked wonders with Jude. We pretend we’re feeding the cat and the lion while making chewing noises.
Dylbug is also a great tool with which to teach children preschool skills like colors and letters. Every night, Jude points to different part of his plate or placemat to show us that he knows his colors. You can also work on animal sounds and counting.
Dylbug: A great tool for your picky eaters. These plates and accessories have so much potential. The mealtime possibilities are plentiful! If you need inspiration you can check out the Dylbug Instagram page here.
To learn more about Eileen Lamb and see her blog go visit The Autism Cafe.
If you have picky eaters on your hands or ones who think it’s fun to mix up the routine, give today’s activity a try! Since the weather is warming up, it’s the perfect time to host an outdoor picnic with your kids. Consider making it extra fun with Dylbug Little Me plates and a few rounds of the "Eat The Rainbow Game"!
Setting up this lunch is simple. Shop the grocery store (or just your fridge) for colorful food options to fit to colors of the rainbow. Our tray included red strawberries, orange baby carrots, yellow corn, green avocado, blue organic tortilla chips, and purple grapes. Tip: mix and match fruits and veggies and even textures, like crunchy chips with soft avocados. Let your kids explore a variety of flavors and textures when they eat.
Set up their places with their personalized plates and, if desired, a base sandwich or wrap. We started with ham and cheese tortilla sandwiches cut into dress shapes with our heart dress cutter and each girl got to dress up their plate as we played the game. We enjoyed our lunch on overcast spring day and with our mini picnic table set up in the backyard which they both thought was the coolest thing!
To play the eat the rainbow game, each child gets a dice and takes a turn rolling it. Whatever color it lands on, they can add that color item to their plate. If they’re older, you can get the colors and the numbers of the dice involved, adding colorful items that match the dice quantity to their plate.
Regardless, give this game a roll (pun intended) and see their excitement as they finally get to be involved in the lunch planning process! Those who love rainbows, identifying colors or just enjoy being outside will love this al fresco rainbow lunch!
Guest blog post created by the funnest mom, Tara with Spot Of Tea Designs. For more kid friendly ideas for crafts, parties and home decor you can also go follow her on Instagram.
We recently had the wonderful opportunity to team up with Leslie Mingo, founder of Dylbug. Her line of adorable personalized plates, placemats, cutters and bowls will get your kids excited to eat all those yummy fruits and veggies.
Easter is right around the corner and these sweet limited edition bunny plates could not be more perfect for your children's baskets.
Our Easter brunch for littles was so much fun. I loved seeing each child's creativity flow and I really enjoyed watching them eat so many veggies.
Snap peas were used for flower stems, spinach leaves for dresses and shredded broccoli for grass. They gobbled it all up and asked for more!
I'm all for making mealtime fun and with these adorable dress up plates, your child's imagination and creativity will be ignited. Aren't those strawberry butterflies fun? And how dapper does Mr. Bunny look in his blueberry bowtie?!
Leslie found these cute trays at Michaels. They're paint trays but they work perfectly for keeping all your food organized. Genius!
One of my favorite products that Dylbug offers are these dry erase placemats. The kids loved coloring and drawing on their little bunnies with markers. There is also a place where kids can practice their ABCs and 123s! Here is the front of the placemat, how sweet is that little bunny's face?
These sweet cutters are way too fun. They come in a heart dress pattern and star pants. Kids have a blast cutting out cute clothes to dress their bunnies. Who wouldn't want to eat a PB&J shaped like a dress?
My daughter loved creating raspberries bows, strawberry and almond flowers and blueberry buttons on her bunny. I don't think we've ever had so much fun at mealtime!
Be sure to check out all the fun products Dylbug offers to make mealtime awesome! You and your kids will have a wonderful time creating and dining together.
Guest blog post created by the amazingly creative Rachel with Fawn blog. For more great party inspiration follow her on Instagram.
It’s fun to have a table set for your little guests. My kids love having a special place setting just for them. One of my tricks when throwing children’s parties is to use coordinating wrapping paper as a table runner! You’ll eliminate having to wash a runner after the party and makes for super easy clean up! Pop a few Christmas decorations down the center and you have a cute centerpiece!
With any party, it’s nice to feed your guests. Since we were having an early afternoon gathering, we served a bite size brunch for our little friends. Mini pancakes, waffles, cinnamon rolls, scones, and donuts are always a hit alongside a few healthy options like eggs, sausage, and fruit!
Though it’s not always necessary, I love to send guests home with a party favor. I found these adorable Christmas plates from Dylbug.com and had them personalized for each guest. It’s a darling treat that they kids can use all season long and pull out year after year. The fun thing about these plates is that they double as an activity and a serving piece! Santa and Mrs. Claus are waiting to be dressed in your meal!
See the whole party at Jenny Cookies blog
We are so excited to be partnering with Dylbug in guest posting today! Many of the faces behind the scenes at The Baby Cubby are both full time Cubby Moms and mamas and, our busy schedules often find us feeling defeated when it comes to providing our kids with easy, healthy eating choices that our munchkins will ACTUALLY eat!
In our search to truly put an end to the endless drive-thru stops and never-ending “What should we eat” debate, we came across the darling plates created by the lovely Leslie Mingo of Dylbug. Dylbug’s products provide a fun way to present healthy foods to our kids, undeniably making mealtime much more successful—it’s about time, right?
The size of the plate is absolutely perfect for a child and, with the array of styles and cutters, the possibilities are endless! My kids felt so involved and connected to our first experience eating with Dylbug plates. They wanted to help with the meal prep, were beaming with pride at their creations and, as a result, happily ate the fruits of their labor! ;)
I found that I could easily create a lunch by simply slicing some fruits and veggies, create a sammy with the darling custom cutters and, voila, a nutritious lunch for my little ones that was super appealing to them!
We are excited to say that Dylbug's darling products definitely warrant the Cubby Mom stamp of approval! From all of us at The Baby Cubby, we are so thankful to Leslie at Dylbug for sharing her talents and creations with us all! From one mom to another, you will never know how much those small victories, like getting our kids to eat better, mean to us! xx
To read more of our thoughts and get the exclusive promo code for Dylbug plates, head on over to The Cubby Community blog!
As a busy mom, I like to putting together really quick meals for my kids. Lunches usually consist of some sort of "snack plate". Snack plates are made up of anything I have on hand. I usually like to have a fruit or veggie, a protein, a dairy and a healthy fat. My toddler can be pretty picky so I like to present her food in a way that is fun and exciting and will make her want to eat her meal! Since Thanksgiving is right around the corner I decided to use my Dylbug dress-up plate to make a cute little turkey "outfit" out of some of the typical snack plate items I use for lunches.
I gather all of the items that I'd like to incorporate into her meal. I then start playing around! To make the turkey you will need:
1/2 of a pear, sliced down the middle lengthwise
applegate turkey pepperoni
nitrate-free deli turkey, rolled and then sliced
cheddar cheese, cut into strips
I found that cutting the ends off of the raspberries made the "eyes" stay better on the pear. But other than that, everything was placed easily on the plate. I don't have time for lots of cutting and trimming, so this is a fun creation to make that will take you no longer than 5 minutes! My favorite kind of meal :)
For more simple, healthy meal ideas follow Lauren on Instagram @laurenbhealth
(Reuters Health) - Parents who have tried in vain to teach their preschoolers table manners may have a new reason to give up the fight. Playing with food may actually help kids overcome a fear of new flavors and eat a more varied diet, a small study suggests.
Researchers in the U.K. asked a group of kids to search for buried toys in mashed potatoes and jelly and found that the children who were comfortable getting their hands dirty at the table were less likely have a condition known as food neophobia, a fear of tasting new things.
"Although this is just an association, the implication is that getting children to play with messy substances may help their food acceptance," lead study author Helen Coulthard, a psychology researcher at De Montfort University in Leicester, U.K., said by email.
It's fairly normal for young children to go through a period when they are wary of unfamiliar foods or refuse to consume more than a handful of different items, though most kids outgrow this during elementary school. It isn't necessarily harmful as long as the children maintain a healthy weight for their height, pediatricians say.
But, because previous research has linked food neophobia to limited fruit and vegetable consumption, Coulthard and colleagues wanted to see if they could establish a link between touching food and tasting unfamiliar dishes.
They asked a group of 70 children ages two to five to play with mushy, slimy food while their parents observed, watching to see if kids would happily use their hands to search for a toy soldier buried at the bottom of a bowl of mashed potatoes or jelly. Children who wouldn't use their hands were offered a spoon.
Parents and researchers each rated how happy the kids were to get their hands dirty on a scale of one to five, with a higher number indicating more enjoyment. Children could get a total score as high as 20, a tally of the scores from researchers and parents for play with both the mashed potatoes and the jelly.
To understand what children typically ate, the researchers questioned parents about how reluctant kids were to try new foods and also asked how many portions of fruits and vegetables they and their children ate each day, excluding juices, dried fruit and purees.
Children ate more fruits and vegetables when their parents did, the study found.
Researchers also gave parents a questionnaire to assess children's so-called tactile sensitivity, quizzing them about things like whether kids disliked going barefoot in the sand and grass or avoided getting messy.
The study found that kids who liked playing with their food were less likely to have neophobia or tactile sensitivity.
The good news for parents is that many picky eaters can be taught to enjoy playing with food, Coulthard said.
Food art is a good place to start, she said. Parents can use food to make pictures or shapes on the plate, without pressuring kids to touch or taste anything, and then gradually encourage the children to make their own art and let them sample the results when they're ready, she said. Offering as much variety as possible from a young age also helps children experience lots of textures and flavors, which may minimize their fear of unfamiliar foods.
"Parents might think less about pressuring or forcing their children to eat fruits and vegetables, and more about ways to foster fun, curiosity, and exploration," Myles Faith, a nutrition researcher at Gillings School of Public Health at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, said by email.
"They might consider activities where children are 'food detectives,' tasting and rating new foods, or even being food critics," said Faith, who wasn't involved in the study. "Gardening or even crafts with fruits and vegetables is a practical activity. Caregivers might think less to pressure and more to pleasure, as controlling feeding can backfire."
SOURCE: bit.ly/1F8ixOO Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, online April 29, 2015.
Click on LINK for original article.
Written by Lisa Rapaport
LITTLE ME - DRESS UP COLOR GAME
I came up with a REALLY FUN after school snack game for my little ones and they LOVED IT! I thought of this game because I have one VERY picky eater. He is sensitive to textures and flavors. I wanted to come up with a game that would give him fun pressure to eat something he normally would frown at (grapes + peppers). This game was a success so I just had to share it with you.
Start with a rainbow dice and 6 different color fruits + veggies. Each color on the dice represented a fruit or vegetable. First child rolls a color (example: green) then has to place their green fruit or vegetable as a hat, shirt, pants/skirt or shoes. Each child takes a turn rolling a color until their Little Me Dress Up is covered from head to toe. Once their Little Me is entirely dressed they continue to take turns rolling the dice, eating the colors that they roll. If they roll a color that they do not have on their plate then their turn is skipped. First child to roll all the colors on their plate and finish eating everything, wins the game.
My little ones got really excited about what other foods they want to use for next time we play. We will definitely be playing this game again. Hopefully you give it a shot with your little ones and let me know how it works in your home. Enjoy!
UPDATE: We have played this game many times and love it! You can replace the rainbow die for one with numbers and just number the foods 1-6. That gives you more options on different types of foods and not just based on colors. Have fun playing with your food!