Cereal C.S.I.

It would seem we have a break-through in the nutritional-deficiencies department!  If you have been here and read "Do You Want Fries With That?" you already know what Josh eats, which is to say, not much aside from potatoes in various forms and a lot of junk.  He won't touch a fruit or vegetable to save his lfe - mind you, I rarely do either, so I can't really blame him on that one (back off, people already yell at me enough about the not sleeping-thing!).  He does take a multi vitamin every day and most of the cereals and things he eats like that are "enriched" or "fortified", so he does get a decent dose of vitamins at least.  Protein however, is the tough one.  He's off and on with peanut butter, and has been in an off cycle for some time now.  No "Flintstones + Protein" that I know of, so it is truly a deficiency in his diet and I am always scheming to come up with possible ways to get some in to him. 

Recently I found a product by Kellogg's called "Special K2O Protein Water Mix". 

This seemed like the answer.  Josh will only drink 2 things: water or vanilla almond milk.  That's it.  No juice, no cow's milk, no shakes or mixes.  Nothing else.  The problem though, is that if it does not look like plain water, he won't touch it.  So no colors.  He's not big on flavors either, so I had really hoped this was literally just protein powder added to water, but no such luck.  It is both flavored AND colored.  Sigh.  It is a great idea though, and if he would go for it, it would sure help in the protein and fiber departments so I will continue to try. 

So not the break-through.  

Turns out, Josh discovered something on his own - I just needed to do some detective work to figure it out. 

Josh is pretty much set in his ways with most things and the cereals he will eat are no exception to this.  He will on occasion see something that someone else is eating and decide out of the blue he wants to try it.  I had a cereal in the cupboard from when my dad was visiting a while back, Post "Cranberry Almond Crunch" and Josh decided one day he wanted some.  So I put a little on his plate.  He did what he does with most things there, and proceeded to pick through it, crush various bits of it between his fingers, push it around and off the side of the plate and on to the table, some falls on the floor - this is all just part of Josh's routine while at the table, it doesn't always involve actual eating.  So I figured he was just going to play with it and left him to it.  He continued to ask for it, however, over and over and over until the box was almost empty.  Wow, what was in there that he liked ?! Was he actually eating some of it or is this a new sensory thing ?  So I tried to watch him.  He's a suspicious little toad, so he gets funny sometimes if he thinks you're watching too much, he often just gets up and leaves.  So I had to keep being casual about the observations.  It did look like he was picking through it specifically for something, but just what that was, I couldn't tell.  Why?  Well, Josh is what is known as a "grazer".  As the word implies, he mostly eats randomly/continuously throughout the day as opposed to any set time or size of meal.  So at any given time there is pretty much always something on his plate.  Normally if I try to clear off what he has left from something I put on there earlier, he will get very upset, so I usually just leave it alone and add to it as he needs me to.  My mother refers to it as his "trough".... thanks, mom.  She's right though, it can certainly achieve some epic proportions of food piling and sorting all around his place - the dog does his best to take care of the floor stuff.  So it is a bit tough to tell what he's doing.  Is he really eating something?  Is he just licking it (this happens a lot)?  Is he crushing it to make crumbs to play with?  Is he sticking it in his socks?  Inquiring minds want to know! I thought at first he just liked the "crunch" parts, those being the granola-esque clumps in the cereal.  So I bought a whole box of "Honey Bunches of Oats".  Turns out he does like those little clusters, but for crushing, not for eating.  So what was it?  Sadly not the cranberries, though a few of those did make it to his socks...  That left the almonds.  I think at first he was just licking the little slices because I did take a lot of those off his plate once he was asleep when he first started asking for this cereal.  But I did notice over time that those were disappearing.  So I went out and bought a bag of sliced almonds - when he saw it he asked for them immediately.  PAY DIRT!  I told him what they were, so now he asks for "ahminds" and is eating quite a lot of them.  It's a small victory, but I'll take it :)