In a homeschooling house full of 7 kids & 3 guniea pigs....there is never a dull moment! A lot of people show genuine concern for us and want to know how we are doing, as the road we've left behind was not a pleasant one. So, here I am, to tell some of our stories...share some of our days...and open up a part of our world to you! Come join us on our journey so you won't miss the moments that take our breath away!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Every calorie counts...How to pack a big punch in even the smallest bite!

For some parents, getting their children to gain weight isn't a big deal...but for other's, it can be one of the most frustrating parts of parenthood.  Out of my six children, I have two that don't grow as they should.  One has an unconfirmed growth hormone deficiency (he will be hospitalized in a few weeks for further testing)...the other, our precious little Duckling, has undergone more tests than I could even remember over the course of the last 2 1/2 years.  Weight gain has been an issue with her literally since day one!  She has seen specialist after specialist and nobody can find anything "wrong".  She is not dehydrated or malnourished.  They have been unable to find any medical problem, syndrome, disorder or genetic abnormality to cause this issue for her, but yet, I have a thriving, active, developmentally on target, 22lb. little girl who will be turning 3 in less than two weeks!  She is monitored very closely by her pediatrician and her specialists.

Through the years, I have been given handouts by her speech and occupational therapists and nutritionalists who have treated her for her feeding problems in the past.  I have come to realize that the mounds of information and tips I was given are not very easy to come by, as I have not been given any such information by anyone who is on her current team.  A few weeks ago, I pulled out all of these handouts, as the need for increasing calories for her are once again top priority.  The main source of her calorie intake is her special formula, however, it seems that now that she is older...even her daily intake of those calories is not enough.  As we await her next visit with her GI Specialist...I fear a feeding tube may once again be in her future.  We looked at the possibility of that neccessity right around her 2nd Birthday, but she narrowly escaped that neccessity. 

In the meantime...I am doing everything I can do to increase the calories/protein in every little bite that goes in her mouth.  This is a task that many find extremely difficult and I know that there are other parents, who struggle with this same frustration.  I wanted to share the wealth of information that I have been given, in hopes that it will also help someone else.  There is a lot of information in these pages, some of it is repetitive.  Once you educate'll find that you start coming up with ideas on your own.  I no longer buy the convienent ready to eat puddings, but yet I make them myself...instead of using milk, I use half & half.  Everytime I cook something for them, I always try to come up with at least one way to add calories/protein to it.  I try to stay away from more unhealthy ways to add calories, such as butter and oils. 

Calorie Boosters that Pack a Punch page 1
Calorie Boosters that Pack a Punch page 2
Fueling with Food Group Variety
Fueling with Food Group Variety page 2

The following ideas all come from here

Adding Calories
Adding Protein and Calories
Adding Protein and Calories page 2

Super Snack Recipes
Super Soup Recipes
Super Main Dishes Recipes
Super Veggies Recipes
Super Drink Recipes
Recommended Resources for more recipes and/or ideas for promoting weight gain

Other ways to increase Calories for Children:
Page 1
Page 2
Helpful Hints!
Practical Ways To Increase Calories for Children
More tips on adding calories
Easy Ways to increase Calories

More Recipes
Good Nutritious Snacks with hidden calories Page 1!
Good Nutritious Snacks with hidden calories Page 2
More High Cal. Solids/textures

I wish that I could credit all of the resources from which all of this information came from, but since these were given to me as handouts...I just don't know where they came from :(

Here's hoping that you can rest a little easier knowing that you have some great ways to sneak more into every bite!  I'm sorry that this post didn't come earlier as planned...we have been down with the Flu at our know what they say....better late, than never!


  1. I can not get any of the documents to load. Google pops up and says "sorry, the page you requested is not available"

  2. loads when i click on it. Do you have a pop up blocker?

    Can anyone else load it?

  3. I do have a pop up blocker, but the page opens, it just says there is no doc avail. Is it supposed to open in google docs or is there a way I can try to open it in a different program?