Thursday, March 28, 2013

BLW, My New BFF

Timmy's introduction to solid food was through the traditional route of purees. I had planned to make all his food, but to be honest, I wasn't a fan of doing that (which is weird, because I like cooking). So he ate a combination of homemade food and jarred food, along with plenty of Greek yogurt to help him chub up.

I knew that when Isaac was born, I'd have to make a larger percentage of his food, because taking two babies to the store every time we needed baby food was too impractical. For the first 8 months of life, Isaac basically refused anything but breastmilk. He showed all the signs of being ready for solid food--sitting up, mashing his jaw, grabbing at our plates and watching us eat--but try to give him anything on a spoon and he just wanted to eat the spoon. Since both Chris and I were way more relaxed the second time around, we figured he'd eat solid food eventually...I was just hoping for sooner rather than later, because I could tell he was waking up at night due to hunger. (15 minute nursing sessions at 2 a.m....not my idea of a grand time.)

I'd heard of Baby Led Weaning (BLW) and understood the philosophy behind it (teaching babies to chew and then swallow) but was convinced it was a choking hazard waiting to happen. Finally, at the encouragement of a friend, we tried it. I'm pretty sure the first food Isaac had was banana (though it may have been avocado) and people, it's awesome. I didn't read any books on the subject and only read a tiny bit online; we just did it and I am so thankful we gave it a try. We cut things like bananas and avocados into finger sized pieces and let him chow down. Now that he's a bit older, some foods are cut into more bite sized pieces. So far Isaac has loved just about everything he's tried. His favorites are avocados (he'll eat an entire one for dinner without hesitation), bananas, refried beans and shredded cheese.

Warning: BLW may result in super cute children wearing avocado on their noses
My one complaint about BLW is the mess. Oh, the messes that little boy can make. I put a towel under his highchair to help with the need to sweep multiple times a day, and I've heard that it does get better, but let's just say that he's needed a bath after dinner more than once because of food in his hair or eyebrows.

And that whole fear of choking? There have only been one, maybe two times where I was genuinely scared that he was choking on something. I remember being scared much more frequently when Timmy was transitioning from purees to real solid food.

I'm hoping the rest of our babies take this easily to BLW, because it's been wonderful for our family. No thawing baby food, needing to run to the store and buy some or make sure we have a jar or cubes with us when we go somewhere. (I do try to bring a banana or avocado along if I know we'll be out of the house and eating something he can't have due to not having enough teeth, etc.) Timmy also loves eating bananas, and I like being able to buy one food that both my boys can eat.

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