Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Tomato Tango

We are trying to grow tomatoes in a container on our deck this year. My Uncle Gary helped us to plant them and our only responsibility has been to water and love thereafter. And in that regard, we've been doing pretty good, really. We had one branch, heavy with unripened tomatoes fall off when we were moving the container to a new spot on the deck, but otherwise, Eric and I are doing our part.

Oliver on the other hand is doing his part to sabotage the whole plan. The kid loves tomatoes. Not sure if this love is normal or not, but he especially loves tomatoes that he can pick right off the vine and plop into his mouth. Occasionally, he'll treat himself to 5 or 6 at a time, but right now there aren't any in the orange stage yet. (Despite the variety claiming "Husky Cherry Red," they are orange when ripe.)

He's tried a green one -- even chewed and swallowed -- but we're trying to teach him to wait, that he can only eat the orange ones. He gets it. I'm certain that he gets it. He gets it, but he does not like it. At. All.

Oh, the drama! As is the predominant toddler-parenting protocol, I have found myself brainstorming preventative measures. How do we avoid this type of breakdown moving forward and still teach him all the lovely lessons of self-sufficiency, organic gardening, and the nutritional benefits of lycopene? (Only partial sarcasm intended here.) So far, to that end, I've:
  • looked into plant foods to make the tomatoes ripen faster
  • blocked the path to the plant with rideable toys
  • smuggled store-bought cherry tomatoes to the porch for the ol' switch-a-roo
  • allowed him to pilfer unripened tomatoes from the plant (path of least resistance)
  • distracted him with watering cans (risky proposition)
  • and more
Really, brainstorming avoidance and prevention techniques pretty much occupies the majority of my brainpower these days. The tomato tango is just one of many situations that could produce a tantrum, really. I'm fairly certain we're going to hit the terrible twos full force within the next month or so. He's already showing significant signs of it. What can I say, he's advanced for his age. Ugh.

1 comment:

christa said...

hysterical! similar situation here. at least the meltdown part! not the tomatoes. my friend scott's son is the same way. can't get enough. i thought it was because he is of Italian decent. :)