Friday, June 8, 2012

Baby Food Time!

Right around the 4 month mark, I noticed that my little one was reaching for my food.  Of course, at first, I thought I was just seeing things and assumed that it was a symptom of the "my baby is advanced and awesome" syndrome that so many mothers have.  Then, he tried to eat my raisin toast.

When we went in for his 4-month well visit, I mentioned this to his Dr., and she said to try some foods or cereal.  So after consulting with friends, family, and a random facebook group I'm part of, I decided to start with rice cereal, just in case he wasn't really ready for food...

I really expected it to be a disaster.  Spitting, coughing, smearing, and general displeasure and grossness all over the place.  But, boy, was this kid ready to eat.  He ate that first teeny bowl of rice cereal so quickly and eagerly that he started crying for more while I was mixing up another bowl!

We did some banana a few days after that, and MAN!  He ate half of it.  I could also see the sugar high in his eyes...but half of a banana!  And apparently a few days after starting the bananas, my husband ate one in front of the little guy, and he cried and reached out for it.  When they say, the baby will tell you what he wants, they weren't kidding!

Since he ate a whole banana, I haven't gone back to the cereal.  It literally has no nutritional content, and there are so many foods he can try that are good for him!  (And to the folks who say "he'll sleep longer with a belly full of cereal" I say, this kids has slept at least 6 hours at night since he was two weeks old...)

Last week, we tried avocado.  Little guy did not like.  So I mixed it with banana.  Little guy did not like.  So I mixed it with more banana.  Again, little guy did not like.  He ended up looking like a bird pooped on his face, and extremely unenthusiastic.  (As a rule, high eyebrows=happy; low eyebrows=annoyed)

This week, we're trying sweet potato.  I had to add a bit of water to it after mashing; little guy did not like the thickness at first, but thinned out a bit and we were good to go.

On the menu for next week?  I'm thinking pears, but the big guy gets to pick the little guy's next food, so we'll see.

I'm going to try to not go the pre-made baby food route.  I just don't see the point in spending the money on it when I just have to mush up some of what I eat for him now and eventually just cube up some stuff.  I've found some really great resources in friends and websites for ideas, and I realized that everything they're recommending for your kid, is stuff we eat anyway.  And maybe it will help me and my other guy eat better in the process...

Just to be clear: Am I ruling out ever buying/using store bought baby food?  HELL NO!  I'll probably get a few jars from the store for back up and to have jars...

How I'm making little guy's food right now:
-mashing up soft things (so far no food processor needed)
-introducing one new thing a week, while continuing to feed him the previous weeks' items as well
-once I know he likes something, I make a bit of it a time.  For example, after I realized he likes bananas, I mashed up a few in little bowls since it takes about as much time to it for three bananas as it did for a half of one.
-starting next week, I'll probably have to start freezing my mashed up bits in ice cube trays.  More than three items at one sitting might be a little too much for either me or the little guy to handle.
-I have not purchased any special "baby" eating items like a little spoon or plate.  I use a custard cup and a normal teaspoon.  Again, I don't see the point in the extra expense, but to each his own.

I found this website through a recommendation.  It has great lists of what's good to try at what time, and even some recipes, though I have not explored that part.  Of most interest to me has been (and probably will continue to be) the food preservation techniques (freezing, etc.).

I'm really excited to see what little guy will eat as our garden starts producing things he actually CAN eat.  Right now our options are non-options (rhubarb, strawberries, raspberries), but I've got squash, cucumbers, peppers, eggplant and I don't even remember what else for him to try throughout the summer and fall.  I might even try to through a melon in there real quick before it gets too late...

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