Happy Birthday, un-Happy Meal!!

“Happy Birthday to you,
 Happy Birthday to you,
Happy Birthday to a very un-Happy Meal,
     Happy Birthday to you!!!”
It is official. One year has now passed since I purchased this meal and Annie freaked out over the smell of a McDonald’s drive-thru. Since then, this burger and fry combo have sat on our dining room hutch, and attracted many interesting comments from guests. One of Darren’s friends (okay, he’s my friend too) even ate one of the french fries just a month or two ago! He said it tasted like a McDonald’s french fry. I gagged. (And could barely finish the dinner we were enjoying.) 
Annie and Ellie now both scream, “EW!!! STINKY OLD McDONALD’S!!! PEOPLE DON’T EAT THERE!” every time we pass one, and every so often, Darren asks when we can just put the plate away. (He long ago gave up the idea that I would even consider tossing it at any point before the girls enter high school. Now, he’s just hoping I will put it up on a shelf somewhere.)
As for me, I giggle over the fact that Healthnut Foodie gets more traffic from Google because of this photo and this post than from any of the yummy food we’ve created. Well, except for pozole verde, coconut crusted chicken tenders, and the best grilled veggies ever. (The article I wrote on artificial colors gets a lot of attention as well.)
All of the buzz over this burger gets our family excited because it means that more and more family’s are realizing the risks that come with feasting on the standard American diet. Every day, more and more mainstream grocery stores are adding better for you choices to their shelves as well! We still have a long way to go, but I am pumped about the way real food awareness has skyrocketed over the past year!
To all of you that are sharing the real food message with your family, friends, and community, THANK YOU!!! Together, and by regularly voting with our food dollar, we will take back the integrity of our nation’s food source.
(While snapping this picture, I really wanted to put a candle in the burger or the bun, but they were both as hard as a hockey puck.) 

16 responses to “Happy Birthday, un-Happy Meal!!

  1. Happy Birthday burger! I took your idea and have a similar experiment going with Chick-Fil-A nuggets and fries. It hasnt changed much in the last 4 months. I think I need to try frying my own nuggets and see what happens. Or baking my own fries. I'm curious how the real food would look after months on the shelf.

  2. Once we were on a trip and had to eat at McDonalds an old man asked my kids if the food was good. My son said, “Keep the toy, throw out the food.” Sums it up for me.

  3. Joy — I am so glad you took the challenge with Chick-Fil-A! They try to market themselves as a “healthy” fast food chain, but if you look on their website, the all-natural grilled chicken sandwich has a LAUNDRY list of ingredients that are anything but natural! Keep me posted!

  4. Kids are sometimes just more “up-to-date” on what we should eat. Before reading up on real food and trying to be better, we took my then 2 1/2 yr old to MCD's for a Happy Meal so she should experience it. She ate the apples, one bite of burger (spit it out) and drank the milk. Oh and Loved the toy. She now knows what McD's looks like on the outside and wants to know if we can get a toy! HA!

  5. oh – sad to hear that about chic fil a. my 4 year old will yell out “ooohhh, chemical fries” when we pass a mcd, or when she sees somebody eating them!

  6. I am sad to hear about Chic Fil A as well. Love (and am totally creeped out) that that someone ate one of those fries. And even more creeped out that it tasted “ok”. Sick. Sick. Sick. Thanks for keeping us informed on how to be healthier Katie!!!

  7. Oh, that is straight up nasty. I stopped eating at fast food places back when I went vegetarian in '98. While I did start eating meat again a few years ago, I never returned to the fast food world… after reading your posts, I'm even happier that I stayed away. YUCK!!

  8. “Chemical fries!!!” I LOVE it! I'm just praying that Annie doesn't embarrass me at the playground this summer when she sees the other kids eating McD's. I have to remind her everytime we get there!

  9. Just out of curiosity, what made you decide to return to meat? When eating out, I often opt for vegetarian dishes if I'm not sure about the type of meat they our sourcing.

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