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Mealtime can be one of the most stressful times for parents and kids, especially when there's a picky eater in the house. Your little might get anxious about their food touching, requesting a completely new meal. Or, they might avoid the foods altogether, leaving you concerned about their nutrition. While helping your child develop healthy eating habits is the ultimate goal, you can also incorporate products that will make mealtime more fun for everyone involved.

Here are our favorite products that help picky eaters be, well, less picky (or at least enjoy mealtime enough to not worry about certain foods!).


1. Food cubby plate divider

food cubby food divider

These silicone separates suction to the plate to keep separate foods from touching, or to keep runny foods from spreading. Say goodbye to tantrums from peas and corn touching, mama.

$14.99

Noshi food paint

noshi food paint

This might look messy, but stay with us. If you're struggling to keep your little one at the table or looking to make them a little more adventurous in trying new foods, Noshi Edible Food Paint will be your jam. (Pun intended.) These organic fruit purees (strawberry, blueberry, and peach) are packaged to look like paint and invite kids to explore and be creative at mealtime. Let them doodle on pancakes, waffles, or toast and earn yourself fun mom status.

$6

ezpz tiny spoon

ezpz tiny spoon

The ezpz Tiny Spoon is designed to help baby learn how to feed independently. Designed with unique functional features, such as sensory bumps to prevent choking, this transitional utensil will help them to build a positive relationship with food and eating.

$14.99

Fred & Friends dinner tray

kids game dinner tray

Make mealtime fun with this board game-inspired plate. Instead of fussing about certain foods, kids will be enticed to eat what's in each section to make it to the end. We love the small sections that separate foods and allow your little to try small bites at a time.

$18.99

Munchkin sandwich cutter

munchkin sandwich cutter

Use these cutters to make fun designs with soft foods, like sandwiches and pancakes. Kids will be entertained by the fun shapes and can even help cut their foods.

$8.99

Training chopsticks

training chopsticks

Swap the traditional utensils for these fun training chopsticks. Designed to help kids grab food easily, the animal topper holds together both sticks to guide them as they develop their fine motor skills. They'll love trying to pick up as much food as possible with these. Added bonus: Remove the topper to try without extra help—it doubles as a chopsticks rest.

$9.95

Learning Tower

little partners learning tower

A great way to encourage healthy eating habits is to get your little involved in cooking or meal prep. They won't be surprised at what is on their plate at dinner and can become familiar with different textures. This learning tower brings them to a counter height and is durable, allowing them to safely help you.

$199.99

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

When I was expecting my first child, I wanted to know everything that could possibly be in store for his first year.

I quizzed my own mom and the friends who ventured into motherhood before I did. I absorbed parenting books and articles like a sponge. I signed up for classes on childbirth, breastfeeding and even baby-led weaning. My philosophy? The more I knew, the better.

Yet, despite my best efforts, I didn't know it all. Not by a long shot. Instead, my firstborn, my husband and I had to figure it out together—day by day, challenge by challenge, triumph by triumph.

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The funny thing is that although I wanted to know it all, the surprises—those moments that were unique to us—were what made that first year so beautiful.

Of course, my research provided a helpful outline as I graduated from never having changed a diaper to conquering the newborn haze, my return to work, the milestones and the challenges. But while I did need much of that tactical knowledge, I also learned the value of following my baby's lead and trusting my gut.

I realized the importance of advice from fellow mamas, too. I vividly remember a conversation with a friend who had her first child shortly before I welcomed mine. My friend, who had already returned to work after maternity leave, encouraged me to be patient when introducing a bottle and to help my son get comfortable with taking that bottle from someone else.

Yes, from a logistical standpoint, that's great advice for any working mama. But I also took an incredibly important point from this conversation: This was less about the act of bottle-feeding itself, and more about what it represented for my peace of mind when I was away from my son.

This fellow mama encouraged me to honor my emotions and give myself permission to do what was best for my family—and that really set the tone for my whole approach to parenting. Because honestly, that was just the first of many big transitions during that first year, and each of them came with their own set of mixed emotions.

I felt proud and also strangely nostalgic as my baby seamlessly graduated to a sippy bottle.

I felt my baby's teething pain along with him and also felt confident that we could get through it with the right tools.

I felt relieved as my baby learned to self-soothe by finding his own pacifier and also sad to realize how quickly he was becoming his own person.



As I look back on everything now, some four years and two more kids later, I can't remember the exact day my son crawled, the project I tackled on my first day back at work, or even what his first word was. (It's written somewhere in a baby book!)

But I do remember how I felt with each milestone: the joy, the overwhelming love, the anxiety, the exhaustion and the sense of wonder. That truly was the greatest gift of the first year… and nothing could have prepared me for all those feelings.

This article was sponsored by Dr. Brown's. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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My husband and I always talked about starting a family a few years after we were married so we could truly enjoy the “newlywed” phase. But that was over before it started. I was pregnant on our wedding day. Surprise!

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