Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The magic powers of chocolate ice-cream

I gave Max a bowl of chocolate ice-cream over the weekend, and he had himself a slurp-fest. I couldn't have been more psyched.

Max has been an independent eater for a good six months now, though I remain amazed by this feat. All those years of spoon-feeding him aren't easily forgotten. Sometimes, he still tries to get Dave to feed him because he is Daddy codependent that way. One raised eyebrow from me and Mushball Dave backs off.

Max uses this cup for drinking, the Infa Trainer. It's easy for him to grasp and the tiny holes at the top mean liquid doesn't come pouring out; you can adjust the flow to slow, medium or fast. It works particularly well with beer, but not so much with tequila shots.

Heh. Heh.

Our speech therapist is working on getting Max to drink out of a straw, not yet in his repertoire of oral-motor abilities. It's one of those small things that blindsided me; I couldn't believe a straw was a challenge. Max has made some progress with boxes of chocolate milk—if you start by squeezing it so the stuff comes up through the straw, he gets the idea and sucks on it a bit. OK, it's not like using a straw is something he'll one day put on his resume, but it'll make it possible for him to down liquids in a can or bottle too wide or heavy for him to hold. Like beer.

So like I was saying, I gave Max a bowl of chocolate ice-cream. Three scoops, because he said "Eeesh!" ["Please!"] so cutely, and I am a sucker for his cuteness and for any words that come out of his mouth. Then I went over to the sink to do some dishes. When I turned around, I saw that he'd picked his bowl up with both hands and was slurping down the remains of his ice-cream, the first time he'd ever grasped a bowl like that.

Ah, the magic powers of chocolate ice-cream. I have to think of other ways to put it to use.


  1. Maybe melted chocolate ice cream shake from a straw? Ice cream does taste so much stronger than chocolate milk. :-)

  2. Hi Ellen,
    I don't know if this will help. But for our daughter, to help train her to drink (after MONTHS of feeding therapy) our therapist had us use baby food and applesauce in an open cup. This way the liquid would not gush to Boo's face but enter her mouth in a controlled fashion. Boo had a very delayed motor response, was an aspiration risk, and this trick really helped.

    At the time, her daycare was so intrigued they started using it to teach the young children how to drink from an open cup using this technique.

    Good luck!

  3. We used the same cup for N! He used it for about six months or so and then we were finally able to begin work with a straw sippy cup. It took us a few more months for him to get it, but now he is able to drink independently and the pride he has on his face.........priceless!

    Our feeding therapist also thickened the liquid used in the training cup for the first few months using juice and baby food or sometimes "drinkable" yogurt. Then she slowly lessened it until it was straight liquid.

    Best of luck with Max using the cup and Go Max for slurping up the ice cream!

  4. I always knew chocolate ice cream was magic! Thanks for validating.
    And drinking from a straw - this was a huge triumph of independence for Aidan that we were so excited about. Chug, chug, chug. chug! GO Max!

  5. I have absolutely love the posts these past two days! I love hearing about progress in our kids. Go MAX!

  6. Go Max! And go you for seeing the beauty in all these little-big things. :)

    Not that this was a post asking for advice in any way (and I am not usually a giver of unsolicited advice), but I wanted to share how we got Reid drinking from a straw.

    We used the Mr. Juice Bear. It was awesome!! Never too much coming out, could be squeezed so that the liquid comes up with very little sucking. Maybe it's worth a try, but more likely, it's something you've already tried. :) Thought I'd mention it just in case. Happy 4th!

  7. I love this post (okay, I love all your posts). Max is such an adorable kid - I'd be a sucker like his dad too.
    My parents are of the generation that does not understand sippy cups. Me & my brother went from bottle to cup - period & that's the way it was & that's the way they liked it. They ask me extremely frequently whether or not I've tried having my 2-year-old Autistic son to drink from a regular cup. And this is after it taking many, many months for my son to accept a sippy cup without fear or disgust. We only needed him to drink from a sippy to be in his part-time daycare class w/o too much fuss. And then we worked for months to get him to accept a less leaky sippy cup for his water (still drinking from his fav leaky one for milk - it's less leaky than the one he liked for water, so I accept & move on). I'm taking my time with this one.

  8. Hi Ellen! We used the Rubbermaid straw cups (they are called Rubbermaid Litterless Juice Boxes) with Mason because if you squeeze them the liquid will go up the straw. Mason learned how to use a straw with this cup. It is the only straw cup I am aware of that you are able to squeeze the liquid up the straw. Good luck and yah for the ice cream slurping!

  9. I'm curious about the headphones being on at home. Does he sometimes get overstimulated there, too, or has he just taken a liking to them of late?

  10. We also use the Rubbermaid juice boxes with the straw. My little guy isn't the best with it yet... He still uses his tongue to try and stop the flow instead of his lips, but it's a pretty good tool to work on straw drinking.

  11. No one is miserable with chocolate ice cream.

  12. Oh, the joys of the simple! We rave about the little things most parents miss in a blink. So thankful!

    Jasper, GA

  13. Ice cream + normal kid = happy
    Ice cream + special kid = OMIGOSH YEAH happy
    I'm also a sucker for cuteness. Esther, my praying mantis, is SO CUTE when she eats, so we feed her destructive garden pests. Elijah went down in big, mean crickets. Esther likes baby spiders, caterpillars, and crickets. Cicero and Augustus are HUGE and Cicero has WING BUDS!!!!


Thanks for sharing!

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