Sunday, November 10, 2013

Simply Weaning

Gideon thinks he is big, and insists on holding his own fork and drinking from big people cups -
is a seven month old really suppose to be this independent?

In England, "weaning" means the introduction of "solids," or, rather, mush.  The Brits and my Australian nanny recommend you begin weaning at six months.  (I know this is somewhat arbitrary, as recommendations differ depending on what country you inhabit, but I generally followed the guideline.)

But my guess is that weaning took on a very different form than my fellow "mums" here in London.

First, I made one meal for everyone, Gideon included.  As I essentially cook all of our food from scratch and am trying to manage part-time doctoral studies and part-time work,  I don't have the time to make two meals or extra soft food for G.  Too, our blender-the faithful Magic Bullet that was one of the few wedding presents that made it on all of our cross-Atlantic moves, gave way just before weaning time.  Third, we eat a cave man's diet: meat, cooked vegetables and very little fruit anyway, perfect and perfectly soft for a baby.

So we just gave him what we were eating.  Plane and simple.  I started, based on the recommendation of our nanny, with one meal, and with protein.  Then veggies.  Then fruit. 

We re-arranged our mornings so that we ate at 7:00 a.m. when G got up so we could have one meal together as a family (Lance usually works till 9-10 long after G is asleep).   

At first I didn't have a high chair or any kind of separate seating contraption, so I just sat him on my lap for the first month while he played with his food.  There were frustrating moments, but he learned surprisingly quickly the difference in hand placement between thumb sucking and putting food in your mouth. 

At six months when we finally had a high chair (ours is getting re-painted yellow by the handyman who botched the job initially, so we are using the 10 pound John Lewis contraption picture above, which I love) so I could begin feeding him softer foods like sweet potatoes and Cafe Rio chicken.

Speaking of Cafe Rio chicken, I soon learned after my husband accidentally gave him the aubergine (eggplant for the Yanks) with the hot Hungarian paprika on it that he didn't mind spice.  So I stopped fretting about separating out his food before seasoning a dish and just leave out the salt till the food is on our plate (Lance and I share to cut down on dishes - are we weird?). 

So far, so good.  Now that he has cut his first teeth and been through his first fever, he is loving eating again and will essentially eat anything put in front of him--except for egg (I know it's a no-no anyway, so I don't force it).  We haven't really given him sugar yet or really grains other than pizza one night while out - hopefully we can keep this up till he is one so that we have a legitimately non-picky eater.  Here's hoping! 

Thankfully, he still feeds himself the bottle when the situation is desperate - here, I was getting a haircut   

We also had a very simple (read slacker but with pride) Halloween costume, and took advantage of the fact that
Gap put bear ears on his coat. 

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