For those of you who know me I have been a little hippy in my methods of bringing up Ida so far. No hours of pureeing food for Ida and me. Noooooo!
Ida and I decided that finger food and baby led weaning was the way forward for us when it was time to move onto solids. A friend who had used the same method to feed her son recommended it to me. Watching him eat his little pitta bread sandwiches while we were out one day and be totally self sufficient (as far as a toddler can be) rather then being spoon fed by Mummy and Mummy not being able to eat her own tea sold it to me. I bought the book, Baby Led Weaning by Gill Rapley and Tracey Murkett and read how, why, what and when and felt totally prepared when Ida was ready to start.
She started a little later then other babies on her solids as with baby led weaning it is better to let their gag reflex move a little further back in their mouths and their gut to develop a little better. So at 5 ½ months the steamed sweet potato, carrots, courgette and broccoli were cooked and we were off. As the book says it takes a little while for the baby to work it all out. The whole process is based around playing with the food and learning how to use there mouths and tongues. So lots and lots of mess! But hey, every mum knows it’s a messy process feeding your baby any way. So after a month or so of “playing “ with her broccoli floret and watching Mummy chew her’s she finally started giving it a hair cut and digesting it. Eureka!! Progress.
And since then we haven’t really looked back. We have days where we decide no we won’t be eating that today. At the moment it is bananas. A once favourite is now mashed onto the table and pretty patterns are made in the mess! But generally she eats anything, ask Sarah! Even other people’s lunch! But we are getting there with that too! We share meal times together and Miss nosey wants to know what we are eating too. Just incase she is missing out on some new tasty food. Who can blame her? Food is great!
I would totally recommend BLW. I know it’s not for everyone, as a lot of people worry about choking and can’t deal with the mess baby makes. For Ida and I it was perfect. It promotes a positive attitude towards food. It makes meal times a shared experience rather then a battle. She has never choked! Gagged yes (don’t all babies who have a further forward gag reflex then us) but never choked. She loves eating, food and really there isn’t anything she won’t eat. Ok, she is only 15 months old and I am sure she will become pickier as she gets older but so far it has been a doddle.
Now she is a little bit older she is even eating from a bowl, plate and cup and has been using her spoon and fork daily. She went through a phase of clearing the table in front of her when she was finished eating. Food, bowl, plate and cup would be pushed to the floor if we weren’t quick enough. Now we are a little older she just say’s “gone” when she is full. We have only ever had one breakage of a plate as she pushed it from the table when finished her tea of falafels and avocado. As she is now a big sister with new responsibilities and duties, I am treating her (and myself if I admit it….as I love them) and buying her a bespoke, hand thrown and hand painted Breakfast set from our gorgeous maker Helen Beard. When it’s finished we’ll be putting images of it up for you to see…. obviously covered in Ida’s lunch. Unless she is having one of her piggy days where she licks the food from the bowl.
Piggy Wiggy, oink oink!
For those of you wanting to BLW or even just traditionally spoon feed, check out the Tidy Trays website. They are great for when eating out with baby.