Cheeto or Carrot?

I love Cheetos, but I almost never buy them. In fact, I probably haven’t bought them in a bag for home since the kids were born. I’ll eat them occasionally at Subway, but I never bring a big bag home. The other day I was craving them so badly that I couldn’t resist temptation at the grocery store. I came home with a family-sized bag.

I offered one to Rose and she yelled “NO! NO I DON’T WANT A CARROT!”

I never realized before how alike baby carrots and Cheetos look.

I can see why she got confused, but she was denying herself delicious junk food over fear that the Cheeto might be a carrot. She usually likes carrots so I’m not sure what the problem was there! I tried to explain that it wasn’t a carrot, that it was a Cheeto and that it was delicious. As I was doing it, I wondered why the hell I was trying to convince my child to try junk food she didn’t want. It would probably be a good thing if she never realized what wonders Cheetos hold.

I was reminded of this time in the waiting room of my OB/GYN when 1.5-year-old Lily asked for an apple because she was hungry for a snack. I didn’t have an apple. All I had was 100-calorie pack Lorna Doone cookies. I told her I didn’t have an apple, so if she was hungry she’d have to eat cookies. She threw a fit while I tried to talk her into eating cookies over eating an apple. I felt like the worst mom ever because clearly an apple was a far better choice, but I was trying to force cookies on her! It was because she was hungry, but STILL. Why didn’t I have an apple? (Because they are a pain in the ass to carry in a diaper bag without bruising or turning brown, that’s why.)

She eventually did try a Cheeto, but didn’t seem to like it much. An hour later, she threw up. It was probably unrelated, but maybe I should listen the next time my kid tells me she doesn’t want junk food– even if the reason she doesn’t want it is because she mistakes it for health food!

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