My kids hate tomatoes. There, I’ve said it. And what’s more, they hate the tomatoes we grow in our vegetable garden the most.
I realize this isn’t some big, earth-shattering confession. (I hated tomatoes, myself, until I was in my early 20s.) But as a good friend of mine reminded me last week, with all my talk about school gardens and our own garden and how kids who grow veggies are more likely to eat veggies, I should really acknowledge that I have had very little success convincing my own family of the benefits of certain home grown produce.
It’s not like I’ve been pretending all this time. In fact, it never really occurred to me to mention it. Maybe it’s because I hold out hope that with enough oohing and aaahing about the joys of a vine-ripened tomato they’ll be convinced. Maybe it’s because I really believe those people who say you have to offer children something hundreds of times before they’ll actually eat it. But in the interest of full disclosure, there it is. My kids hate tomatoes. They think they’re squishy and seedy and gross. Of course, they eat ketchup and tomato sauce by the bucketful, but fresh tomatoes grown two metres from their kitchen window?—No way.
My point is, getting kids to eat vegetables or healthy food in general is not an exact science. Even when you do what “experts” say to do (grow your own, offer healthy choices), it doesn’t always work out. Maybe they’ll come around and maybe they won’t. At least my boys like the cucumbers.