In June while we were in the mango capital of the world, also known as India, I was extremely dismayed and even embarrassed that my mango loving baby refused to even touch an Indian mango. My thought then, was, how did you so readily and happily eat all those Mexican ataulfo mangoes all these months in New York, yet now, you’re on some odd mango strike and just outright refuse to even look at a mango in the country with the best mangoes on earth?! How is this even possible?
Instead, and as though to insult her dad and me, when on a boat on the backwaters of Alleppey, Kerala, one of our servers offered a plate of cut mangoes and apples. And while completely ignoring the mangoes, Pookster turned to the huge slices of apples on the plate, skin and all. At first, I was initially wary of her eating such thick slices, but she seemed to manage them really well and even relish the fact that they were so fat. With each huge bite she took, she chewed and chewed, as though proud of herself and her amazing biting, chewing, and swallowing skills. On the one hand, I felt annoyed she refused the mango in favor of the apple. On the other hand, I was so damn proud of her eating skills. How many kids at her age would be trusted with apple slices that were that thick and fat? If anything, she likely could have handled them that thick earlier, but a) we didn’t really have apples in the house to test this out, and b) I was being a bit risk averse despite having her learn solids through baby-led weaning solely.
Today, she actually prefers fat slices of apple. And she rejects apple slices that are too thin! But alas, her eating habits have proven to be a bit different at home vs. at school. At school pickup today, her teacher let me know that Pookster prefers the slices fat, but cut in half horizontally. Say, what?! The weird toddler selectivity of my silly, cheeky Kaia Pookie.