On the days I work from home, Soren and I have breakfast together. (In terms of solid food, we feed him breakfast and dinner. We’ll probably add lunch soon.) As part of my new defattening project, I’m eating more like he does in the morning — a little bit and mostly fruit. Today’s breakfast featured a pear, berries, yogurt, and some “kids” bread.
We got “kids” bread because I’m allergic to wheat (not so much that it bothers me, as far as I know) so I don’t want to give Soren too much hard-core wheaty stuff. As a pretty much die-hard devotee of earthy wheat bread, I’m surprised I like this super-doughy white bread as much as I do, but it’s kind of delicious.
Soren really likes yogurt. We’ve been giving him plain Fage (no gelatin!) but to spice things up, just started adding fresh blueberries (microwave to make them squishy, mash them, let them cool, and then add yogurt). So he had the yogurt (I’m not sure I’m a fan of Greek strained yogurt), some pear, and toast (the toast is intended as a yogurt-delivery system more than anything). I had the raspberries and blueberries, some pear, and a slice of bread. And the coffee.
When I was learning about how to start feeding a baby solid food, I read a bunch of stuff on the internet and talked to our pediatrician. The general practice is to start off with something like rice cereal and then introduce other things, one food at a time. I figured we’d just make him various fruits and vegetables in some sort of mashed/pureed form — I’m too much of a smug hippie to buy packaged baby food.
The thing is, the rice cereal/puree process didn’t work for us. Soren didn’t like being fed with a spoon or rice cereal. As I learned from the glorious internet, many babies are like this. That’s when I learned about baby-led weaning, which basically involves giving your baby finger food and letting him eat it himself (or not, as often is the case). There’s a book about it, which I find pretty helpful; I refer to it sometimes but haven’t read the whole book yet.
We’ve settled into an approach that’s probably 75% baby-led weaning and 25% traditional spoon feeding. Ben has more luck with the spoon than I do, and I have more luck with the finger foods. Fortunately for me, I’m okay with the mess that results from, for example, handing a baby a piece of toast with yogurt on it. The cleanup process kind of sucks, but watching him eat a little and smear the rest all over himself is almost always hilarious to a new-ish mom who is easily amused.
He’s gotten much better at feeding himself over the past few weeks, but he still doesn’t eat a lot of solid food. I figure it’s more about learning than actually consuming anything right now, which is why I like the idea of baby-led weaning so much — he’s going to learn more about eating by actually doing it himself than he’d learn by having spoonfulls of stuff airplaned into his mouth.
One of the goals of baby-led weaning is to eat meals together and just give the baby some of what you’re eating. We’re not to that point yet — Ben and I tend to eat dinner too late in the evening, and sometimes we eat stuff I don’t want to give Soren yet (like fake meat products). We’re trying to give him as much natural, healthy, unprocessed food as possible. We’ve done mostly fruits and vegetables, yogurt, hummus, free-range eggs, blueberry pancakes (his favorite), French toast, a little cheese, bread, black beans, refried beans, and a little pizza. I’m going to make some homemade black bean burgers soon.
What’s cool is that, although we’re not always eating meals with him or the same things he eats, trying to feed him well is making us eat a little better, too. My goal is for the three of us to really enjoy eating really healthy food together. And for my defattening project to succeed (more on this soon).