Friday, January 2, 2009

Koopas, Goombas, Bowser, and Food.

What do they have in common?
They are all heinous enemies, which should be vanquished from the face of the earth.

Jaysen's latest obsession with Mario still holds strong, and has expanded to include playing Mario on the Wii for hours at a time. Despite his frustration with the games, he would play from the time he woke up 'til the time I forced him into bed.

I have tried using a super-cool new visual timer to limit his game play, but as soon as the timer went off, he would perseverate "Can I play the Wii now? Can I play it now? How about now? How many more minutes?" etc, driving me batshit crazy.

Hence the new strategy.

I discussed the new strategy with Jaysen last night, and he's game (pun intended) for it. It involves his consumption of food, which has always been a struggle with him. I explained that he will be able to "earn" Wii time for the consumption of either healthy, or new, foods. He smiled and immediately wanted to make a chart. I told him I would think about how to devise such a chart (since he tends to outsmart me on these things, being the ultimate "loophole finder").

His suggestion was to make a chart with G, M, G, M, G, M, G, M.
Grape, milk, grape, milk, grape, milk, grape, milk.
Foods that he will tolerate in such desperate times.
Umm... no.
I explained that he will not earn Wii time by eating a taste of foods that have already passed into the "yellow zone" of not-desired-but-tolerable-at-times.

He can, however, earn time by:
1. Eating a serving of a "yellow zone" food, such as a half of an apple, or a small bowl of grapes.
2. Consuming a taste of a "new food" or a food which currently resides in the to-be-avoided-at-all-cost "red zone". Such as a bite of broccoli, or bite of chicken not in nugget form.

I know there will have to be some tweaking to the plan such as deciding exactly how big a "bite" actually is, or if a "taste" must involve the actual swallowing of offending item. I will have to make on the spot decisions according to the intensity of his actions concerning this. I can usually tell just how far I can push the limits by watching his reaction to things. Hmm... that bite of carrot was itty-bitty, but he's not red-faced and drooling? Try a bigger bite, buddy. Bite of mashed potato making him gag? Possible vomitorium eruptus approaching? That was a great try, and you may spit it out.

I have yet to determine how much time will be awarded to successful foodin', because as I have said, he has found loopholes in what I had thought were iron clad plans before. I don't know if I should even specify an amount of time. Just set the timer for 15-30 min depending on the amount and undesirability of the foods he did eat. I'll have to think about this one.

If all else fails, I'm sending him to Maddy.


kia (good enough mama) said...

Wow. If this works, I will bow down before you and proclaim your highness-ous-ness. Or something.

Nicki said...

Sounds like a great plan! I hope it will work! I remember being obsessed with Mario back when it first came out on the tiny little Nintendo in the 80's! Crazy that now kids can play it in 3-D, and on Wii, and everything else!

therextras said...

Does Maddy know about this? hehe.

Sounds to me like you know what you are doing.