Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Baby Led Weaning (or why we let Matthew eat weird stuff at 6 months)

* I accidentally published some of the videos as private at first, they should be viewable now without needing to friend me. I don't even know what that is on YouTube*

So, I'll admit that at 6 months, we let/encourage little Matt to eat things that are weird to many people. For those curious, we stumbled upon the idea of baby-led weaning and it totally made sense. Here's the wikipedia explanation if you're really curious, or worried Matthew is going to choke or think I'm ruining him or just made this all up because I'm lazy : )

Anyway, I can easily admit we may be doing solids this way because I'm lazy and find spoon feeding babies to be rather tedious and annoying. I'd like to believe that by allowing Matthew to choose his foods it will help with portion control (lord knows his dad and I ate an entire pot of cheese fondue the other day so we're not the best role models), help him make healthier food choices because he's been exposed to so many healthy tastes and textures, help so that he might not go through a super-long toddler "I only eat yellow foods" phase or that he'll develop table manners faster or all the other things to book says.

However, what I really like about it so far is that it's encouraged me to look at James and I's eating habits and prepare healthier meals that we sit down as a family to share. Unless it's super salty or sugary or full of lots of processed ingredients, we give Matthew whatever we're eating, and it's far easier to make one healthy meal than both an unhealthy meal and a healthy one. This means he's had garlic and onions and paprika and cinnamon and so far enjoyed it while James and I have eaten less salt, sugar and unhealthy fats (okay, except for our Valentine's fondue fest). While we eat, Matthew joins us at the table and does his own thing while we enjoy a nice, warm meal at the same time. It is definitely messy (thank goodness for dogs!) but completely worth it so far.

Here's some of the new foods he's tried and liked this week. P.S. If you find baby food pics weird (admittedly, it kinda is) there are cute animal pics at the bottom of the post.

Here he is enjoying some of Grandpa Ron's homemade sausage. Sorry Grandpa Ron, I'd say for now it ranks below steak, but definitely above lamb. At least he definitely picked your sausage over cauliflower :) So far, cauliflower is the only thing he hasn't picked up and at least put in his mouth. I think this makes James very happy.

And here he's having a waffle slice for breakfast.
And some more cucumbers. He loves cucumbers and they're a good go to food to round out a meal.
Here he's enjoying the stewed prunes and apricots from our lamb the other night. He's now figuring out how to use his thumb to get foods from his fist into his mouth.
Enjoying a meatball

Admittedly, this solids thing is always a learning experience. Though I'm impressed, Matthew is still learning how to move food from the back to front and front to back of his mouth. Our biggest problem is we tend to eat before naptime and before the end of the meal Matthew can get frustrated. Here he is trying to work through some carrot that he can't decide if he wants to keep or if it's too big

Grandma Watson sent June this adorable shirt. Luckily it was easy to put on since June is quite possibly the most submissive dog in the world. She may have even been a possum in her former life.

Olivia didn't quite know what to make of it
But I bet next time we get a deep snow, June will appreciate the covering on her belly. Thanks grandma and grandpa!

Laser kitties plotting their attack from the top of our closet

Matthew learning to play with the cats.
Practicing standing holding one hand.

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