Monday, 10 November 2008

Sorry, sorry

Rather overwhelmed at the moment. Anyway, he doesn't like Weetabix and refuses to try green beans.

Sunday, 2 November 2008

Friday, 31 October 2008

Crawling, breakfast, first tooth, apple porridge pancakes

As the title says, he's been busy! We've had proper crawling for about a week now (he's nearly 9 months old) so have been manically babyproofing. He's much more adventurous than his sister was and has discovered all kinds of things we hadn't thought about, like doorstops and drawers. Plus as his pincer grip is very good now, I'm constantly hoovering up the detritus shed by a 3 year old girl and 3 fluffy cats.

I introduced breakfast a few days ago, as he was hanging round the table looking hopeful, like a puppy. Just toast with butter or cream cheese, so far. Easy to clean up in a hurry.

His first tooth popped through the gum today, hooray. Soon its mate should follow and chewing will be more effective.

Finally, I made apple porridge pancakes for dinner. It's 50g oats (ground in a blender), 30g flour, 1.5 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 whisked egg, 60ml apple juice, 50g yoghurt, half a grated apple. Makes 6 mini pancakes. Phoebe devoured 3, he's asleep so will try it when he wakes up. It was a lot of hassle to make, to be honest.

Friday, 24 October 2008

Cheesy nuggets, no chips

We went to Chessington on Wednesday. Surprisingly, it's perfect for preschoolers. Under 1m means they get in free, yet over 90cm means they can go on 90% of the rides. We bought annual passes as we live fairly nearby. Anyway, we had lunch in the "Goblin Family Pub." Again, surprisingly good. Rafs was offered chips for the first time, but threw them all on the floor without tasting any. Luckily I had packed rice cakes and a banana.

Yesterday I made cheesy veg nuggets, again from Aitch's site (see links). 7oz frozen broccoli, steamed till very soft then disintegrated in the blender. Mixed with 4oz breadcrumbs, 6oz grated cheese, 2.5 tbsp each olive oil and water, and 1.5 tsp baking powder. Made about 15 balls. Baked at 190C for 25 minutes. Very oily result, but he really enjoyed them. Rather chewy too; it's amazing what babies can manage with no teeth. Once my frozen stock runs out I shall make them again. Probably with mushrooms instead as he hasn't tried them yet.

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Orange mash (onion)

Taken from Aitch's site (see links). This was my version. Finely chop an onion, fry in olive oil till soft. Add 1 grated carrot, 200g chopped butternut squash, 2 tbsp red lentils and 200ml water. Simmer covered for 15 minutes. Mash up with some grated cheese. Add some breadcrumbs to stiffen, as needed. This made about 8 servings (now mostly frozen). He adored this and scoffed almost all of his portion. It is very yummy, I agree.

Onion is notorious for causing wind but he seems fine with it. So there's another food ticked off :)

Thursday, 16 October 2008

Jam, 8 month check

Not just any old jam ;), Duchy Originals Damson Preserve. It is absolutely delicious and I fancied some, so I put a little on Rafi's toast too. He was indifferent really. Ate it but not with any particular relish, so I won't bother again. Mainly sugar anyway.

Had his 8 month HV check today, only 2 weeks late. Pointless really - height, weight, "He looks like he's doing fine, here's your free books". Could have got those from the library, which is right next to Phoebe's preschool rather than miles out of my way like the clinic. But it's good to know how big he is. Still 91st centile for both height and weight (73cm, 22lb) - he was born 9lb 4.5oz so is following his curve nicely and it explains why he's in 12-18 month clothes and already almost out of them. Genetically he should be short; we're all 25th centile. Weird. I guess he already eats more than his sister does now at 3.5!

Monday, 13 October 2008

Smoked haddock fishcake

Made by my father: mashed potato and smoked haddock made into a big cake, coated in breadcrumbs, shallow fried. I can't think of much worse (I detest fish) but both children enjoyed it.

Also, I gave him a new rice cake topping today. Mashed banana with greek yoghurt and lemon juice. Went down a treat but left him very sticky!

Saturday, 11 October 2008

Boursin, smoked salmon

Yesterday I put Boursin on his rice cakes instead of regular cream cheese. He didn't seem to notice; I guess he's used to garlic through breast milk. So now I can use it in cooking with confidence.

Today he had a bit of organic smoked salmon with his lunch. Like the plaice last week, he chewed a while then spat. Texture, not flavour, seemed to bother him a bit.

Monday, 6 October 2008

Irish potato farl

Bought some today on special offer, to see how the kids like them. Toasted and buttered. Naturally the big girl refused to even try, but Rafi adored it and stuffed it in quite frantically. Also had cheese and roast sweet potato. Dinner was lentils spread on rice cakes and his favourite raspberry yoghurt.

Sunday, 5 October 2008

Summer pudding, fish

Tried the Plum Baby summer pudding. Gloopy so it stays on the spoon very well. He was indifferent to it really; ate it but without much enthusiasm.

Also had his first fish, a bit of the inside of a plaice goujon. He was puzzled by the texture I think, as he chewed it a bit before spitting.

Oh and I have discovered that he will eat lentils after all, if they are spread on a rice cake. Good result there.

Thursday, 2 October 2008

Proper sweetcorn

He had sweetcorn/carrot puree a few weeks ago and hated it. Today I mixed some kernels into his mashed potato and got the same reaction. Irritating as it's Phoebe's favourite veg.

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Wednesday

Lunch: cream cheese on toast, blueberry/banana puree
Dinner: pancakes (thrown on floor), mashed potato (tasted a few times), apricot yoghurt (devoured)

Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Lumpy puree

Lunch today: cream cheese on toast, banana.

Dinner: coconut couscous, steamed butternut squash, and lumpy puree. Well, a "Stage 2" variety (strawberry and mango) intended to teach 7 month olds how to eat tiny lumps. I bought a pack by mistake a while ago and Phoebe won't touch it ("I don't like bits") so thought it was time to try it on the boy. Interestingly it was quite gaggy; he clearly sucks the puree off the spoon straight to the back of his throat just like the theory says. As Rafs, who is happy with toast and pasta and could chew at 5.5 months, had this problem, it's no wonder so many exclusively puree-fed babies struggle to move on to stuff with more texture. He did get the hang of it after a few goes and does love "spoon-fruit", as it's known in our house.

Sunday, 28 September 2008

Catching up

Sorry, have been really busy. Meeting all day yesterday, then working on decluttering/babyproofing today as Rafs is so close to crawling. 5 charity shop bags, one bin bag, and I've almost done my bedroom...

Anyway, the only new thing he has eaten was cauliflower cheese. A rip-off frozen organic "home-made" thing from Waitrose. I thought it was really nice but he hated it so much it made him cry. So I quickly replaced it with a trusty yoghurt.

Thursday, 25 September 2008

Blueberry

yesterday: no lunch. Rice cakes with hoummus for dinner, and apple/strawberry puree pot (same as Phoebe).

Today, more rice cakes and hoummus for lunch, with an apple/blueberry puree pot (same as Phoebe). Dinner was mac cheese; he loves this. Tried a few squashed peas as I made some for Phoebe anyway, but he can't pick them up yet really. Then squash/carrot puree from the freezer - I made it so I'm determined to use it up.

Tuesday, 23 September 2008

Too much poo

After being a bit constipated for a while, now we have the opposite problem... Skipped his swimming lesson today just in case, boo hoo. He's fine in himself though, with a good appetite.

Lunch was plain mini rice cakes (now a firm favourite), broccoli and a peach yoghurt. I need to cut down on yoghurt I think - he now eats the entire pot and it's quite sugary.

Dinner was linguine (amusing), banana (to try to bung him up a bit) and a pot of pear/raspberry puree. He adores raspberry and got cross when it was finished.

Monday, 22 September 2008

No dinner again

Because he is still asleep.

Lunch was roast potato, broccolli and raspberry yog.

Sunday, 21 September 2008

Random pics

Smoothie-gulping big sister.



The "splat" technique. Surprisingly effective.


Concentration.


Finger-lickin' good.


Showing the baby how to use a fork.


Saturday, 20 September 2008

Still no kitchen access

Managed plum, plain rice cakes and yoghurt fot lunch. No dinner as he slept 5-7.

Friday, 19 September 2008

Parsnip and pea

Bit tricky today as my kitchen was being tiled. No freezer or microwave access.

Lunch: Mashed avocado on rice cakes, strawberry yog.

Dinner: Plum, tomato, Plum Baby puree of parsnip, pea and apple. Smelled revolting but he ate half the pot quite happily.

Thursday, 18 September 2008

More of the same

Lunch: mashed avocado on rice cakes, apricot yoghurt
Dinner: coconut couscous, plum, apple/peach puree.

Wednesday, 17 September 2008

Pancake

Lunch: Macaroni cheese, banana, apple/mango puree. He ate the entire pot!

Dinner: Phoebe begged for pancakes. Wheat, dairy and egg, all in one package. But I decided , what the heck, let him try it. Another hit :) and no sign of any egg problem so far. She ate three whole pancakes, so a great success all round. One left, now in the freezer.

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Catching up

Manic here, sorry. Anyway, the good news is that he likes macaroni cheese.

Sunday, 14 September 2008

Eating out

Went into central London for brunch with the ILs. Didn't know where we were going so packed a picnic of steamed broccolli and roast sweet potato for Rafs. In the end he ate very little as the restaurant was full of so many distractions. Phoebe did fairly well though with her veggie sausage baguette, and even tried a mouthful of her cousin's baked beans. Still doesn't like them but at least she tried.

For dinner he has eaten a fair bit more of the broccolli and sweet pots, along with some couscous and some rice cake with hoummus. It's fantastic that he likes hoummus; it's a great protein source for a veggie and as DH eats the commercial stuff for breakfast every day it's a family staple.

Saturday, 13 September 2008

Hoummus, coconut couscous

Had a cookathon today, as I want to get R onto slightly more substantial meals than just random bits of fruit and veg.

First I made hoummus. One can of Tesco organic chick peas (they have no salt), roughly mashed, then blended with the other ingredients. The trick with hoummus, I find, is to add way more liquid than you would expect. So I used about 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 3 of natural yoghurt and several good glugs of bottled lemon juice. Next time I'll add garlic, but I'm avoiding tahini at the moment because it contains the same allergen as peanuts do.

He had the hoummus spread on a rice cake for lunch, and seemed to enjoy it. He also had one with cream cheese, and some tomato pieces on the side.

Then he had some coconut couscous for dinner. This is based on a recipe in Carol Timperly's Vegetarian Baby and Child, one of my favourite books. Phoebe used to eat a lot of it when she was younger (she won't eat it now, of course).

I did 200ml carton of coconut cream, 2 tablespoons demerara sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 400ml water. Boil, make sure sugar is dissolved, stir in 8oz couscous, remove from heat, cover, leave till ready. It's good with raisins and dried apricots (simmered for 10 minutes separately to make them juicy, then stirred in) but he doesn't have a pincer grip yet. The couscous clumps nicely into big balls so makes good finger food, although it goes everywhere when dropped on the floor. It also freezes really well.

First taste gave him "the shudder" but he kept eating, so must have liked it well enough. He also had some defrosted carrot puree, left from my early "does he really hate carrots?" experiment, but rejected it. So he had an apple/vanilla puree pot instead.

I also made a big batch of macaroni cheese for the freezer. Won't give you a recipe as it's hardly unusual! Fingers crossed he likes it.

Friday, 12 September 2008

Pumpkin

Lunch: cream cheese on rice cakes, a Plum baby pot of pumpkin/carrot/mango. Disgusting in my opinion but Rafi liked it.

Dinner: steamed carrot and courgette (defrosted). Don't freeze cooked courgette, it goes quite slimy! Digestive biscuit, banged it on the tabke till it shattered, and so he managed to actually eat a few of the smaller bits. Then raspberry yoghurt, his favourite flavour.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

Digestive, strawberry yog

Lunch: Finally managed to find some large unsalted rice cakes. Not organic, sadly. Anyway, he had those with cream cheese on, which he enjoyed. Then an apple/raspberry puree pot. Phoebe turned her nose up at hers - she doesn't like raspberry.

Dinner: Banana. An organic wholewheat digestive. This was thoroughly sucked but he didn't manage to bite any off. Poor toothless fellow. Then a strawberry yoghurt. First taste of strawberry; it's very very unlikely that he'll be allergic, and he's been fine with raspberry, so I thought it was reasonable at 7 months 8 days. I'm tired of throwing away the strawberry yoghurts because nobody likes them. Luckily, he did.

Wednesday, 10 September 2008

More dullness

Lunch: orange rice cakes, banana, peach yoghurt
Dinner: plum, Cheddar slices, apple/blackcurrant puree pot.

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Big day

Phoebe started again at preschool, thank goodness. She is delighted to be back. And Rafi had his first swimming lesson. He loved it and was very splashy.

Lunch: the last of the roast squash, more orange rice cakes, and an apricot yoghurt.
Dinner: Plum, tomato and some of Phoebe's linguine. He did surprisingly well with it. His technique was to open his hand flat, pressing his palm against his mouth, and try to slurp it in. Very entertaining. Also offered lentils on a spoon, again. Wasn't third time lucky; he still doesn't like them. But I have a few more pots in the freezer so will keep offering periodically.

Monday, 8 September 2008

Orange rice cakes

Lunch: roast squash, rice pudding blobs. Messy but yummy.
Dinner: orange flavour rice cakes. Only 1% orange oil (it's an allergen). Loved them. Another Golden Globe plum. Offered Plum baby sweetcorn/carrot pot but he still hates it. Fair enough; I'm not buying any more. Soon he will be able to cope with proper sweetcorn.

Sunday, 7 September 2008

I must get more creative

Lunch: Cream cheese on toast again (DH made lunch today). He seems to like sucking the cheese off and spits most of the bread out. Tomato quarters again, and a Golden Globe plum (skinned and quartered).
Dinner: Pasta twists (not wholemeal) and roast butternut squash. Followed by mango/banana puree pot.

Saturday, 6 September 2008

Same old food...

Lunch: roast potato, Cheddar slices, tomato quarters and mango chunks. All eaten like it's going out of fashion. Phoebe was impressed enough to actually eat a tomato herself, which is a very rare event.

Dinner: avocado, cream cheese on toast. Toast still a bit gaggy so will leave it another week. He liked it though :)

Friday, 5 September 2008

I was out today

But am told that he had avocado, tomato and roast potato for lunch, then mango and more potato for dinner. I think he didn't get any spoon food as DH couldn't face the mess!

Thursday, 4 September 2008

7 months yesterday

But I was too busy to post, sorry.

So, yesterday, lunch was apple rice cakes, banana and raspberry yoghurt. He found the banana much easier to handle tha the last time a few weeks before. Dinner was steamed courgettes and carrots, then apple/something I forget puree pot.

Today lunch was more carrot and courgette, 2 slices of cheddar, banana yoghurt, and as he was still very keen, mango/banana puree. Dinner was apple rice cakes, banana, and lentils on a spoon. He still doesn't like them and only put the spoon in twice.

DH is in charge tomorrow as I'm going to a study day for my antenatal teacher training. Wish him luck!

Tuesday, 2 September 2008

Tomato

Uninspired today, as none of my fruit is ripe.

Lunch: apple-flavour rice cakes. Nicer than the plain ones; kept him amused for 20 minutes or so. Followed by mango yoghurt.

Dinner: made some wholemeal pasta but found it was too chewy. Phoebe objected as well. So more apple rice cakes. And a large vine tomato, skinned and with the hard green bit cut out. I know it's a potential allergen, but he's not genetically susceptible to allergies/eczema/asthma etc so I feel it's extremely unlikely to be a problem. Anyway, he gave his usual "what on earth is this?" shudder, but came back to it quite a few times so it can't have been that bad. Dessert was half a Plum Baby mango/banana pot. I've had a proper mango ripening for a week now, with bananas next to it, and it is still rock hard. So needs must...

Monday, 1 September 2008

Broccolli and blackcurrant

Lunch: more squash pieces and mashed potato cakes. Mainly thrown on the floor, as he wanted to chew his mat instead.
Dinner: Rice pudding as finger food. Broccolli for the first time, which he liked a lot. Finally something green! And then an apple/blackcurrant Organix puree pot (Phoebe had one too). Only about 2% blackcurrant though!

Sunday, 31 August 2008

Mashed potato cakes

Based on Jenny Maizel's recipe in Finger Food. Mix in some cheese, flatten balls, draw smiley faces with 3 year old, bake or fry. Phoebe ate them despite the cheese! Bit squishy for Rafs but some went in. Along with squash pieces, then raspberry yoghurt.

Dinner was avocado and plum.

Saturday, 30 August 2008

Cream cheese on toast

He struggled a little as it needed more chewing than he is used to, and gave up fairly quickly. About half a finger did go in though! Then he enjoyed some avocado and melon.

Dinner was steamed butternut squash (he adores it still) and the last of the melon. Slight choking episode with the melon, but one quick pat on the back sorted him out. I wasn't there but DH said it was definitely different to gagging :(. No harm done; just a reminder to always supervise them while eating and make sure not to give them melon or similar that is a bit too hard.

PS No spoons today.

Friday, 29 August 2008

Pretty in pink


Mmmm, courgettes and cheese.


Although I do fancy a bit of that ice lolly.



If only I could crawl... Who needs cheese when there are cat biscuits?


Thursday, 28 August 2008

Nothing new

Lunch - a very large purple plum, skin off because it was very loose. Apricot yoghurt.

No dinner. He slept 5:30-7:15, by which time Phoebe had eaten all his avocado!

Wednesday, 27 August 2008

Melon

Lunch - pasta twists and avocado. 3 cubes of butternut squash puree from freezer, then when that ran out, a whole apple/peach/mango pot.

Dinner - the rest of the avocado and some very juicy squishy melon. All a bit frustrating for him. No spoon food as he ate so much lunch and I don't want more constipation.

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

My boy likes cheese!

Lunch - more pasta twists and carrots. Phoebe also had sweetcorn, but he can't pick it up yet, so I offered Plum Baby sweetcorn/carrot puree. First taste was spat out with a shudder, and he refused to put it anywhere near his mouth again. Fair enough; it was a bit gross really.

Dinner was rice cakes, now definitely liked, and slices of medium Yeo Valley cheddar. Phoebe could sniff out (and reject) a cheese molecule like a shark detecting blood, even at his age. But Raf couldn't get enough of the stuff. This opens up so many options - macaroni cheese, cheese on toast, pizza, sandwiches... We're absolutely ecstatic!

Then he had a Hipp apple/mango/peach pot. It was very yummy; Phoebe ate two.

Monday, 25 August 2008

Eating again today, yippee

He "exploded" last night, but it didn't seem to bother him at all luckily. So back to normal today.

We went out to Kew Gardens. I don't recommend the Victoria Terrace cafe. Long queue, nasty soggy sandwiches and dry oranges. Phoebe's plain scone was nice though. Rafi had a banana/peach jar, as there was no suitable finger food available to buy, which was tricky. The high chairs were for toddlers not babies, so I did it on my lap. As he won't let me feed him, we both ended up covered in a sticky mess. Then he had two mini rice cakes. Last time these were rejected, but today he seemed to enjoy them a lot more.

Dinner (at home) was pasta twists and steamed carrots. He's still not overkeen on carrots but accepts them.

Sunday, 24 August 2008

No food today

All that eating has made him constipated, so we have decided on no more solids till he does a poo. 48 hours and counting. Neither of us wants to hold him, it's like playing "Pass the bomb."

We went out for lunch today as we didn't have to worry about him. Veggie/fishy options on the extensive childrens' menu included mini lentil burger, veggie hot dog, macaroni cheese, fish pie and spaghetti with tomato sauce. But none of these are acceptable to Miss Picky, so she had the bread from around my own lentil burger (luckily there was no sauce to contaminate it), half of DH's chips, and a side order of sweetcorn. It's immensely frustrating.

Saturday, 23 August 2008

Lentils

Lunch - quartered yellow plum, boiled courgette, mango/banana puree.
Dinner - quartered ripe pear, red lentils boiled for 30 minutes to make a thick soup. Neutral response really. Think he prefers sweeter things.

Friday, 22 August 2008

Bottomless pit!

Late lunch today (1:45) thanks to Phoebe's morning at a sports camp. Raf was clearly starving. He had his first proper pear and ate about half, along with a few bits of avocado. Then he went through an entire raspberry yoghurt and was still keen, so half an apple/pear puree pot followed. Of course he didn't actually eat all of the liquidy stuff because much of it got spread around, but still...

Dinner was just pasta twists and boiled courgette. I didn't offer any spoon-food this time, so he had a very long bf instead.

Thursday, 21 August 2008

Biscuit

Specifically, an Organix Baby Biscuit. Not great I know, but at least it wasn't orange. He was very puzzled because it was too hard to chew (he has no teeth yet) and soon discarded it in favour of squash pieces. Phoebe said it was yucky, and I agree - very dry with a weird flavour. Won't buy them again. Apple/pear puree followed.

Dinner was the last of the squash, along with rice pudding blobs as finger food. Both greatly enjoyed. Then I offered Plum Baby Super Porridge, banana and plum flavour, made up with normal full-fat cow's milk. He loathed it, and having tried it myself I don't blame him. It tasted like envelope glue. Will just do normal porridge with rolled oats next time. He enjoyed a Plum Baby banana/mango pot instead.

So I learned a lesson today about versions of normal foods aimed at babies. In my defence the ones above are new products that were not around 3 years ago when Phoebe was this age.

Wednesday, 20 August 2008

More and more



Lunch was more pasta twists with fried courgette. My mother's help V, who comes twice a week so I can do a bit of study or work, was here at lunchtime. She was flabbergasted to see him picking up and munching his food. He had carrot puree to follow and she couldn't resist trying to spoonfeed him, but he wasn't having any of it - atta boy! I think in the end they compromised; she held the very end of the spoon and he had it near the bowl. He was certainly less messy than usual.





Dinner was steamed squash pieces then mango yoghurt, both comprehensively demolished. He was very ready for two meals. I think he would like three but I can't face it quite yet.

Tuesday, 19 August 2008

Pasta and plum

Lunch - pasta twists and yet more sweet potato. This was his introduction to wheat. He didn't pull his "yuck" face, but really, who doesn't like pasta? It's utterly inoffensive surely. I think he swallowed about half a twist as it was a little gaggy. Then apple/pear puree again. Phoebe had plain pasta and puree too; that's a typical meal for her alas.

Dinner - a quartered yellow plum. I bravely left the skin on, quelling thoughts of "choking hazard!" . It was great, very easy to handle. We have a new favourite food; he demolished it! One quarter was completely eaten, skin and all. The rest was all sucked off the skin. After all that he wasn't bothered about his puree (homemade butternut squash) and started his "bored now" spoon-banging after only 3 or 4 mouthfuls.

Phoebe was over 1 before she ate this much! It doesn't seem to have displaced milk luckily. He has visibly gained since we started and now has lovely wrist and ankle creases and a double chin.

Monday, 18 August 2008

Up to 2 meals

Lunch - more roast sweet potato, very enthusiasticaly received. Boiled carrots, not rejected this time. About half a baton eaten. Banana yoghurt. Little Rachel this time. Runnier than Yeo Valley but no sugar.

Long wet afternoon at home. By the third showing of Little Mermaid II: Return to the Sea by brain was dribbling out of my ears. So I decided in my wisdon to give Raf dinner as well. Another half of a carrot baton went down, and some avocado was thoroughly squashed. Apple/pear puree was appreciated too, although his sister's antics (naked hula-hooping) were rather distracting.

Sunday, 17 August 2008

Roast

For a change, we made a roast lunch today. Well, sort of, as we're a semi-veggie household (apart from the cats). Quorn escalopes for the adults and sole goujons (posh fish fingers) for the big girl.

Rafael had roast sweet potatoes, which are definitely his favourite finger food so far. Just as well as I've got several days worth in the fridge now. He had a bit of normal potato but it crumbled too much in his hands. We intended to give him baby corn but it was still too crunchy after 20 minutes steaming. Phoebe liked it, at least.

Phoebe wanted to choose his pudding, and went for a banana/mango puree (Plum Baby). Apparently, because she doesn't like fresh plums and nectarines, she thinks he won't either. She is astonished that he likes sweet potato. It's very cute that she cares so much.

He'll turn orange at this rate!

Saturday, 16 August 2008

Learning fast

Gave him the rest of the cauliflower today and he managed it much better than yesterday. He still went for the stems first, but ate the heads too instead of destroying them. Much less went on the floor. Also offered avocado pieces but these were almost entirely ignored.

Followed up with raspberry yoghurt (a new flavour). It was quite sharp, and made him wince a little, but he kept going back for more. Now he smells lovely - think he still has some in his hair.

Friday, 15 August 2008

Cauliflower

Not a great success. He insisted on eating the stems, which were too gaggy, and then he crumbled the heads into tiny florets that he couldn't pick up. It was very frustrating and he got quite cross. So I got the apple/pear puree out again, and this made him happy.

Thursday, 14 August 2008

Apricot yoghurt

My fridge was bare and I was short of time, so that's all he got. Went down well though, and was apparently great fun to spread around his mat.

Organic box has now arrived and Ocado man is on his way, so tomorrow will be better. This will be much easier once I intoduce wheat and can just chuck him a slice of toast!

Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Courgette

Peeled, cut into batons, fried in olive oil till very soft. He seemed to quite like them so I will do it again.

Top tip - don't offer banana at the same time. It's even harder to pick up when coated in olive oil from the mat! I'm going to abandon it for the time being and try mixing it with porridge instead once he starts having more cereal in his diet.

Tuesday, 12 August 2008

Even more orange

The rest of the roast sweet pots were thoroughly squished today and quite well eaten, although we did have two dribbly little gags. I'm not sure he got any nectarine in as it was very slippery, but he certainly got juice on his fingers so got the flavour.

Then I offered loaded spoons of apple and pear puree (Hipp Organic) because I wanted to give a new taste and the fridge is bare. It's certainly a family food anyway, as Phoebe is addicted to "fruit pots". I limit her to two a day! She was delighted that he was having one too. He liked it, although as it was too thin to stay on the spoon well, most of it ran down onto his neck and chest. Oh well, it's only more laundry. The washing machine is on most of the time anyway as he possets a lot and can go through 4 or 5 outfits on a bad day. I do have some long-sleeved bibs but they are mainly pink. Fine with me but DH objects!

Monday, 11 August 2008

The orange and white diet

Must offer him something green soon!

Today he had roast sweet potato. Much easier to hold than the more slippery things I've been offering, and he definitely consumed a fair bit. Also gave the rice pudding I made yesterday. It was thick enough to give as finger food, and was a fun new texture for him to play with, albeit messy. He managed to get quite a lot of it in his mouth and seemed to enjoy it.

We've started to get interesting nappies with chunks of undigested food in them, so he is swallowing more and more. All good signs.

Sunday, 10 August 2008

Mango

Pieces were pushed about without much enthusiasm. He only tried to put some in his mouth when he saw his sister eating some - the power of family mnealtimes. When he was thoroughly bored and chewing on his bib instead, we offered Plum Baby mango/banana/quinoa puree (loaded spoons, as usual) which was happily accepted. I'm loathe to stop offering the spoon when he enjoys it so much, but feel somewhat guilty. Oh well, I'm sure he'll be doing better with his finger foods soon enough.

I have made some rice pudding for tomorrow. Dead easy, and much cheaper than buying jars. 1 pint of full fat milk, 2 1/2 oz pudding rice, 1 oz sugar. Put in greased ovenproof dish, cover with foil, bake for 2 hours at 150C. Nice with dried fruit and nutmeg for older babies. Lets hope he likes it as much as he did the jar.

Saturday, 9 August 2008

Sorry about yesterday




I actually went out in the evening. Not something I'll be repeating anytime soon; Phoebe begged to come with me, while Rafael apparently cried for 2 hours wanting to comfort-nurse. He still stays up with us all evening and comes to bed with me (we co-sleep), but Project Bedtime will commence soon. Just want to get weaning onto solids well underway first.

Anyway, back to the food. Yesterday he had more steamed butternut squash and a peach flavour yoghurt (Yeo Valley Fruit Tumble). As you can see above, the yoghurt was a hit. He had a bath straight afterwards as his hair was full of it.

Today, yet more squash. It was a big one; still have masses left and some frozen. Also some nectarine pieces. This surprised him a lot. Because it's the same colour, he hadn't realised it wasn't squash, and was not terribly impressed.

Thursday, 7 August 2008

No longer strapless!



It's bright red and cost a small fortune, but at last we can finally use the high chair. Rafs seems to like it luckily.

Today he played with some steamed butternut squash pieces and ate a little. Then, wanting to give dairy again, I offered him rice pudding (Hipp Organic jar). It was ground rice, milk, and a little sugar (bad mummy). Oh my goodness, I have never seen anything like it! I couldn't fill up his spoons fast enough. Usually he chews on them a bit before reaching for another, but today it was slurp, drop, grab at breakneck speed. After about 3/4 of the jar he must have been full because he suddenly completely lost interest and started trying to climb out of his chair instead. The mess was absolutely horrendous, but he was one very happy baby. I have some pudding rice somewhere so I will have to make my own lumpier version for him. I expected him to loathe it so took the easy option as a trial. Phoebe has always hated dairy foods even at Raf's age, so I'm extra-amazed. The only way I could convince her to eat yoghurt as a baby was to put peas in it!

We had friends over later on. Phoebe and her friend had a very boring meal - fish fingers, potato waffles and sweetcorn. Both of them are very picky in different ways so it was the best we could do. The other baby, a month younger than Rafi, had standard powder-based baby rice, and Rafi looked very jealous of her meal. I'm not ready to up it to more than one meal a day - it's so hard to cope with both children needing me at once - but I might have to do it soon.

Wednesday, 6 August 2008

Avocado and carrot, take two

We had a childless friend visiting for lunch today. She was very tolerant of holding the grumpy boy while I made sandwiches, of the two mid-meal nappy changes, the mess Raf made, and of my inability to follow a conversation for more than about 30 seconds. Once upon a time she was my manager; how different my life is now.

Rafs had avocado pieces and did pretty well with them. I think he actually consumed almost a quarter of the fruit. He has already started to open his hands to get at the squishy mess inside them, which is fantastic progress. He also had carrot puree, but was not keen. Am going to leave carrots for a while as they have never been very welcome.

He has been wanting to bf immediately after his meal, even though he usually feeds right before it as well. I think it's time to introduce a cup of water for him to explore. I'm optimistic that he will figure it out quickly; he has never had any problems with an occasional bottlefeed. I can't remember if I'm supposed to use cooled boiled water or not. Off to look that up now.

Tuesday, 5 August 2008

Yoghurt and weigh day

Took Rafs to baby clinic this afternoon. Very rarely do as in term time it clashes with Phoebe's weekly swimming lesson. At 6 months and 2 days, he weighs 18lb 10oz. Just over double his birth weight (9lb 4.5oz) but down from 91st centile at birth to 75th now. But what I want to know is, why haven't I lost 9lb?!

He is 70cm tall, just below 91st centile (was 95th at birth). This is why I can barely do up his 9-12 month vests and sleepsuits, but they are very baggy. It conerns me a little as his parents and sister are all short/plump not tall/slim. If he hadn't been born at home I'd be wondering about a hospital mix-up! It's also annoying to have two babies born in Feb, but one so much bigger than the first. Her cute Christmas sleepsuits went straight into the too small box last week.

Anyway, back to the food. There was no reason to delay dairy so took the plunge today with some plain natural yoghurt. He pulled his "is this poison?" face and wasn't very impressed, but kept spooning it in himself for 10 minutes or so. I think I'll put fruit in it next time. Banana was pretty much ignored. He did take one huge bite and looked very surprised, but did chew and swallow most of it.

I did mention BLW to the health visitor, but she wasn't very interested. Maybe I should have gone to their official weaning workshop after all, just out of curiosity. Have no idea what their policy is.

Monday, 4 August 2008

Nothing new today

The lunchtime scene here was one of controlled chaos, as I was feeding four children aged 3-6, three adults, and of course one 6 month old baby. So poor R was left until everyone else had enjoyed their tofu hotdogs, strawberries and toffee cake. Towards the end he was making it clear that he wanted some food too!

He had a banana just broken in half, and managed 3 or so small bites when I helped him hold it. It wasn't rejected, which is good - not a total spoon addict yet.I offered it first, then left it on his mat once he got fed up, and he did come back to it once his beloved squash was all gone. The butternut squash puree was a great success again. He must have spent over half an hour playing with it, and he has mastered spoon-swapping already. When I wave a newly-loaded one in his direction he instantly drops the used one in order to grab the new one. Definitely a boy who knows what he likes. Anyway, I defrosted FIVE, yes FIVE, ice cubes of the stuff for him and I think, despite the mess everywhere, most of it went into him. It's incredible to have a child who wants to eat! Those of you with fussy non-eaters will understand.

Sunday, 3 August 2008

Happy half-birthday!

Pink champagne for us! Rafael celebrated with rice cake. Well, I say, celebrated but what I mean is recoiled in horror and disgust. His face, on biting off a piece, was a real picture. Sadly I didn't catch it on camera. So I gave in, and let him have his first "ready meal", a jar of banana and peach gunge. We were visiting my parents so I had brought it along as a back up. Result was half an hour of blissful self-spooning and finger-dipping. He really really likes peach.

Only 9 days in and we seem to be getting further and further away from "proper" BLW. It's my own fault for giving him a spoon in the first place, but now I'm not sure where to go from here. I feel bad that we're not doing it as fully as planned, frustrated that he clearly prefers mush even though I know he can chew, and also feel guilty at not necessarily giving him what he wants. Should I be genuinely "baby-led" and let him have what he clearly enjoys? Does trusting your baby mean letting him eat just puree? Hmm... Thoughts anyone? I didn't have the problem with Phoebe as she wouldn't eat anything!

Saturday, 2 August 2008

Avocado

DH did Raf's lunch today while I took Phoebe out to the theatre. I am told that the avocado pieces were too ripe so were instantly squished into mush in his hands. However, when he was offered a spoon loaded with the resulting mush he seemed to like it.

I did make carrot puree yesterday. I'd forgotten what a hassle it is - I understeamed them and ended up scraping them out of the blender, microwaving, and re-blending. I haven't got time to do all that! It's enough to drive anyone to jars.

Phoebe, who loves carrots, tried the watery orange slop and pronounced it "Yuck." However, it seems that Rafael did quite like it and isn't anti-carrot after all. It can't be down to laziness, because he's using the spoon himself. Does he just prefer a smooth texture? He's perfectly capable of chewing; I've seen it. Well, I'm not going to pander to him and become a full-time mush-feeder. As his fine motor skills improve he'll be keener on proper food, I'm sure. Bring on the pincer grip.

Friday, 1 August 2008

Rerun of yesterday



Steamed carrots thrown on the floor or ignored. Squash puree devoured; much screaming when it was all gone. That's a new experience for me!

As an experiment, I will offer steamed squash and carrot puree, to see if it's the flavour or texture that is the issue. Does he adore squash, puree in general, or just the easier-to-hold nature of a spoon?

Thursday, 31 July 2008

Carrot

If there's somebody out there pushing up the price of Tripp Trapp baby sets on eBay, please stop it!

Tried steamed carrot today. He took one bite, spat it out, and wouldn't try any more. Clearly he has a sweeter tooth! Phoebe and her visiting 4-year old friend polished off the spare "chips" so it wasn't wasted.

Butternut squash puree went down well again though; he self-fed 5 spoonfuls before getting bored and deciding to chew his mat instead.

Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Potato and squash

Well, the banana definitely went in, as he had lovely wormy bits in his nappy this morning. Good to see!

Am out of bananas so had planned plums for today. They turned out to be way too squishy and juicy, so instead I microwaved a jacket potato and cut the inside into the required "chip-shapes". It was still too hard for him to pick up though, and crumbled in his hands. He did get some in, but it proved to be rather gag-inducing. That stresses me, especially as he has a blocked up nose from a cold. So I gave up on that after a while and moved on to (purists look away now) a spoon!

I happen to have some pureed butternut squash in my freezer. I overcooked some a few weeks ago so thought I might as well whizz it up and make ice-cubes. So as we weren't getting anywhere and I had wanted to offer a new flavour today, I zapped a cube for him. Don't panic, I didn't feed it to him myself! Gave him a loaded spoon to play with, and this made him very happy indeed. Much easier to hold, and he surprised me by putting it straight into the right place, rather than in his hair or up his nose. I think he consumed about half the cube overall. Which is more squash than Phoebe has ever eaten in her life, so that made me very happy indeed too. I shall buy another one and roast some for him soon.

So, new plan is to continue in this way, offering both finger foods and control of his own spoon. That's pretty much what I did last time and even though she's so fussy about flavour, she has never had an issue with textures so it worked well in that respect. Until she went on her spoon strike from about 10 months...

Tuesday, 29 July 2008

Phoebe pics






Haven't managed to upload any Rafi pics yet so thought i would experiment with some old ones. Hopefully, you can see Phoebe age 6 months, decorating herself with mashed avocado and carrot. I can't find any where she's eating proper food, oddly, so have also tried to put one age 12 months, begging for more breadsticks.
Hope this works!

More banana

More successful today. He clearly remembered liking it yesterday, and as soon as I had the mat/food set up he started making the enthusiastic puppy-like panting noises he does when he's about to get a much-wanted breastfeed.

I tried leaving some peel on as "handles" but he ended up chewing the peel. That bothered me so I removed it and helped him to hold the slippery stuff. He definitely bit off, chewed and swallowed at least three mouthfuls. So will be looking out for "banana nappies" (worm-like threads) tomorrow.

Not bad given that he only had about 5 minutes to do it in - Phoebe has a 2pm swimming lesson every day this week so lunchtime is very rushed. But her father is taking her tomorrow, so I'll be able to focus on Rafs properly. It's very hard to supervise him closely (still no strap so he's on my lap for his meal) with a 3 year old tugging on my arm demanding attention.

Monday, 28 July 2008

Yikes

I've just been browsing the archives a bit more thoroughly. Rafs was having his usual "snack and snooze" session while DH put Phoebe to bed - she sleeps about as well as she eats so 9pm-ish is when she usually conks out.

Anyway, I'm stunned by George! By 8 months he was eating more, both quantity and variety, that Phoebe does age 3.5. She has never, to my knowledge, eaten eggs, cheese, pizza, butternut squash, sweet potato, blackberries... She will however eat an entire mango in one sitting so at least they have that in common. We made broad bean soup today and she was very keen to try it, but the first spoonful was spat everywhere in horror.

Please please please let Rafael be an eater. I guess time will tell. On reflection, I need to give him things that are less slippery than bananas. At his age Phoebe had almost perfected her pincer grip but he has trouble even using his whole hand. Frustrated with him, she keeps picking things up for him and trying to stuff them in his mouth. Sweet but not actually remotely helpful! Especially when she tried to share her ice-lolly (homemade, just frozen apple and cranberry juice) this afternoon...

Bananas

Too slippery, but mush sucked off my fingers was a hit. Same again tomorrow I think. Then maybe plums.

Sunday, 27 July 2008

Here we go

Had lunch in the garden yesterday. Sat Rafs in his father's lap and offered him potato and rather mushy watermelon. He was more interested in trying to eat his mat, but did bite off then spit out a bit of potato.

Sama again today, but inside, using his still strapless chair. He did disappear under the table at one point but harness plus quick reactions saved the day. I won't use it tomorrow when I'm the sole adult and Phoebe is distracting me. Anyway, he had fun making a mess but none of it went anywhere near his mouth. He had just had a lengthy breastfeed (as it's very hot today) so maybe that was why. Oh well, all good practice. Banana tomorrow I think.

Friday, 25 July 2008

Nearly there

Still no high chair strap, as I was too mean to pay over £13 for one on eBay. Will keep working on it though.

Got my latest organic box yesterday (we get the Family Box from www.abelandcole.co.uk) and as well as the usual bananas there was a lovely watermelon, so we will be starting with that tomorrow. Phoebe, who doesn't even like watermelon, has been begging us to open it. Have also done some roast potatoes tonight, and we already know he likes boiled ones. So fingers crossed for tomorrow.

Only a week or so off 6 months, so that's not bad. I did privately celebrate his expected due date a few days ago (21st) and have some pink fizz (Camel Valley, bought in Cornwall) ready in the fridge to celebrate on 3rd August. 6 months feels like quite a significant milestone.

In other news, Phoebe pestered me endlessly today till I gave in and helped her make a banana milkshake that she saw on Big Cook Little Cook (a CBeebies programme that she loves). Dead easy, just blending a banana, a cup of milk and a tablespoon of yoghurt. One slurp through a straw and of course, "I don't liiiiiike it." Me neither, I hate milk. Luckily her father, who was working at home today, heroically drank the lot.

More tomorrow, and maybe a pic if I can figure out how.
Sarah

Sunday, 20 July 2008

And we're back

From a week in not-so-sunny Cornwall. Stayed at a lovely farm (http://www.higherlankfarm.co.uk/) for the third year in a row. Alas, collecting eggs every morning didn't make Phoebe any more inclined to actually eat one. She did enjoy herself though, and was even brave enough to bottle-feed the lambs. Lucy, the hostess, was very helpful as always with Phoebe's fussy eating and happily made her plain pasta, "butter sandwiches" and suchlike whilst the other young guests were tucking in to delicious nursery teas. Finding lunch places was typically challenging - I swear she will turn into a fish finger one of these days, as there is rarely anything else that she deems acceptable.


We felt very sorry for poor Rafael. He has started avidly watching every morsel of food we eat and looking pathetically desperate. On Friday we gave in and let him have a few rice grain-sized tastes of boiled potato. Couldn't give him the whole thing to hold for himself as it wasn't soft enough. The response was amazing! I was expecting him to push it out right away and cry, just like Phoebe did for months and months, but no. He seems to have lost the tongue thrust reflex already (age 5 months and 2 weeks) and chewed away with great enthusiasm. Definitely wanted more but we want to do it "properly" at home.


So today, in between loads of laundry, we dug out the high chair from the depths of his wardrobe and assembled it. Well, most of it. It's a Stokke Tripp Trapp; a beautiful wooden chair that in theory can be used for older children and adults too. Phoebe rejected it in favour of a grown-up chair, but it was great when she was small. It doesn't have a tray; this was key for us as we want the babies to be part of normal mealtimes and not separately seated. However, we cannot find the leather strap that goes between the legs. We suspect we noticed it was getting manky and thrown it out, assuming that she would still be using the chair so we would have to buy a second one anyway. Oh well, there are plenty going cheap on eBay so I should be able to get one by next weekend. I plan to start him on banana but won't have any till the organic fruit and veg box comes on Thursday, so they probably won't be ripe till the weekend anyway.


Thank you for the comments. I haven't blogged before so it's strange to think about having an audience. I do hope this will be helpful.



Best wishes,

Sarah

Thursday, 10 July 2008

Greetings

Hi everyone,

I’m Sarah, and as I’m about to start BLW I’ll be blogging the process on this wonderful website.

I had better start with a formal introduction. I live in SW London with my husband, my daughter Phoebe (born 23rd Feb 05), my son Rafael (born 3rd Feb 08) and three cute but demanding cats. In my pre-children life I was a medical researcher and then worked in healthcare marketing, but now I’m an almost full-time mother and a very part-time student (antenatal teaching for the NCT).

With Phoebe, I dutifully brought out the baby rice at 6 months, but she wasn’t having any of it. I don’t blame her; it’s revolting! So we moved on to a mix of purees and real food (primarily rice cakes and watermelon at first). She wasn’t impressed with any of it. From about 9 months she did start to be a little more interested, but only in finger foods, so I abandoned the spoon until she was old enough to sort-of manage it herself. She continued to live on fresh air (¼ slice of toast was a big meal) until she turned 2, and now, although she remains incredibly fussy, she does eat just about enough to keep a mouse alive! She seems to be thriving on her limited diet, and I give her an iron supplement (Minadex) stirred into her bedtime milk as insurance. It is terribly frustrating much of the time though. I love to cook, and she loves to help me, but of course she won’t touch most of the fruits of our labour.

I’m optimistic that Rafs will be an eater. He is 5 months and 1 week old today, and it’s getting harder and harder to stop him stealing my own food. He lunges for my plate making his little snorting noises, doing a great impression of a ravenous zombie from a Romero film! He did manage to chomp on a bit of banana a few days ago when I was distracted with Phoebe and screamed blue murder when I took it away. He has also started sitting alone for about 15 seconds now and I expect he will be stable very soon now. But I’m adamant that he has to wait a little while longer because we are going on holiday next week. Breastfeeding is so much more convenient; why faff about with solid food when you can have a nice peaceful sit-down? Many people are keen to rush into weaning as early as 3 or 4 months, but I bet most of them are first-timers.

Anyway, we will be re-assembling the high chair and digging out the bibs as soon as we get back from Cornwall. He won’t quite be 6 months, but hey, he was 2 weeks late in arriving so *technically* he’s old enough, right? The great thing about BLW of course is that he won't be able to get things in his mouth and/or swallow any if he's not ready after all, but he will still be learning about food and mealtimes. We shall see what happens.

Will update you when we get back.

Sarah

Friday, 4 July 2008

Update & Fame at Last!

Well Hello lovely readers,

Mel here for a mini update on us! Bur first, check out the new link to the Rapley Weaning site - where our own lovely blog gets a mention! Woo Hoo!

Well, believe it or not, my beautiful little George is now 2. OMG how did that happen. You would never believe that he is the same little boy about whom I had all the weight concerns. He is chattering away, and is a little minor bird, so we have to be careful what we say around him.

The last time he was weighed he was back up to the 75th centile, so never think that BLW is a poor substitute to puree for a little baby! we are proof that it works well.

Finally, if someone is just starting out on their BLW journey and would like to contribute to the blog along with Kat & I please let me know.

Love

Mel x

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

BLW picnics and teething.

The sun is back (again) and we have been camping out in the garden. We're trying not to rely too heavily on sanwiches but they are so easy! Of course this means I'm trying to get my lazy brain working on alternatives. Millie recently tried some of our fajita filling so maybe I can work on some baby friendly version of this.

After spending most of her first year toothless Millie has been adding to her collection with gusto. We have had some fraught moments when they are bothering her. Melon seems to be a teething friendly food. It comes nice an cool from the fridge and she uses the rind as a teether once she's eaten the flesh. Tidy.

Happy Days,

Kat x

Friday, 6 June 2008

First Birthday.

How has a whole year passed already? We're having a lovely time celebrating Millie's birthday. This is a photo from her birthday lunch yesterday - yes she is trying to use chopsticks!

Happy Days,

Kat x

Saturday, 31 May 2008

Six Months of Munching.

Wow, a whole six months have passed since I joined this blog and began BLW with Millie. The time has gone by so quickly! I just read my first post back in November. I had forgotten how daunting it felt to begin, how worried we were about her weight, how sad I felt about giving her formula (lasted about two weeks!) and how haphazard my approach was. Millie has gone from strength to strength, overcome the weight issues and grown up into a....toddler. It's her birthday next week and as other babies are learning to self feed she is confidently eating from a spoon and drinking from an open cup.

For your amusement, here is a (not quite) alphabetical list of what she has eaten so far...

Avocado, aubergine, apple, asparagus, alfalfa sprouts, amaranth grain, artichokes, aduki beans, apricots, arame, banana, broad beans, butternut squash, butter beans, Brussels sprouts, bread, blackberries, blueberries, broccoli, basil, beetroot, beef, blackcurrants, cabbage, courgette, cucumber, cauliflower, chilli, chickpeas, coriander, carrots, cinnamon, coconut, cavolo nero, celeriac, celery, cod, chicken, daal, egg, fennel, figs, grapes, garlic, ginger, haricot beans, kale, kohl rabi, kidney beans, leeks, lettuce, lemon, lime, lentils, linseed, mushrooms, mint, mango, mustard, melons, mussels, millet, mustard seeds, parsnips, parsley, pear, peas, polenta, peppers, plums, potato, pumpkin, pop corn, papaya, pinto beans, prawns, poppy seeds, onion, olives, oats, olive oil, quinoa, raspberries, raisins, rosemary, rice, shallots, sweetcorn, spinach, spring onions, strawberries, swede, swiss chard, satsuma, sweet potato, squid, salmon, sesame seeds, turnip, trout, vanilla, watercress, watermelon, wakame, water chestnuts, yoghurt and no doubt plenty more!

Happy Days,

Kat x

Tuesday, 20 May 2008

Quick Hello

Hello folks! Just wanted to let you know what was happening. I'm a busy bee at the moment, I'm doing a couple of evening classes and setting up my own business. Also, I've started contributing over at Bambino Goodies so I've been a little tied up. I have got a few recipes up my sleeve so please forgive my absence over the last week and I will get them up ASAP along with some other treats.

We are still looking for someone who is starting out BLW with their baby who would like to share their experiences here. Have a look at this post for more details.

For those of you who love free stuff (who doesn't) come on over to Bambino Goodies where we're in the middle of a month long givaway extravaganza!

Happy Days,

Kat x

Tuesday, 13 May 2008

Reviewed: What should I feed my baby?


I have got lots of cook books some I love and others leave me uninspired. Of course having a baby opens up a whole new genre (be still my heart) but are the reams of baby cook books worth the money? And, as a BLW family, are they any use?

Overview:

This book is written my nutritionist (and mother) Suzannah Olivier. The larger portion of it is given over to guiding you through the nutritional mine field of what your child needs and why. There are recipes from 4 months to 2 years.

What I liked:
  • I like the accessibility of this book. I started reading it on a long car journey and flicked through reading the odd page here and there. As the sections are succinct you can dip in and out of it like this, reading only the part which interests you at that point in time.
  • The information is level headed and easy to understand. Having read a few books about nutrition when at uni I know they can be a little cumbersome but this is written in plain English.
  • There aren't any areas left unexplored, IMO. The book covers introduction of foods, allergies, vitamins and minerals, food hygiene, what your baby does NOT need, food labels to name but a few.
  • The recipes are yummy! There are even suggestions for birthday menus.
  • It is well illustrated, I'm a sucker for a monkey.

What I didn't like:
  • Well, not much really. Would have prefered more recipes but then I always feel like that!

What about the recipes?
  • Yes, there are puree recipes (use them as sandwich fillings) but these are only a small proportion of the sum total.
  • The recipes are sorted into age ranges and at the beginning of each section it tells you which foods are safe to introduce (the kind of thing I love).
  • I have tried a few and found them all to be easy to follow and a hit with Missy Moo, which is the main thing.
Worth the money?
  • Absolutely yes! I will be recommending it whole heartedly to my friends.

Happy Days,

Kat x

Saturday, 10 May 2008

Birthdays.

Millie had her first birthday party today. I know she's not one yet but as it was a joint party it was a little early. In BLW news: They. Ate. Cake. Well, my version of it :0)



Friday, 9 May 2008

Starting BLW.

It feels like forever since we started out on our BLW journey, nearly six months. Looking at Millie now, roaming around and chatting to her new dolls, I can scarcely believe how far we've come. Of course if you're new to the blog chances are you are starting out and my ramblings about picnics and birthday cakes aren't what you're looking for. You can go back through the archives, Mel began this blog in 2006 and I joined last November. We've charted our babies' journeys into weaning, the foods we tried and how it all went down (or ended up on the floor). This is post number 400 according to the stats - woo hoo! We're working on a few bits and bobs together and will make things a little easier to navigate eventually. Until then, here are some ideas for getting started.

What food to choose?
BLW means pretty much any food is on offer. That said, here is a (not exhaustive) list of fruit and veg which seems to be popular with the BLW babies I know.
Root Veg: parsnips, sweet potatoes, beetroot, carrots, swede, celeriac.
Other Veg: Broccoli, cauliflower, spinach, butternut squash, beans, peas, asparagus.
Fruit: bananas, pears, apples, melon, mango, grapes (cut up).

How to prepare it?
Cut the veg or fruit into 'chip' shaped sticks, about twice the length of your babies hand span. My preferred method of preparation is steaming (I find a bamboo steamer very useful). I am rubbish at judging the time so check every five minutes or so until it feels soft enough to squish with the tongue. You can also roast or dry fry depending on what it is you're preparing. If you have a teething babe, melon from the fridge is very soothing.

What to expect?

Not a lot! Keep offering a range of foods, expect that plenty will go on the floor and stay calm. It will change and they will get the hang of it. At first Millie ate half of each stick and dropped the other as she didn't know how to get it ut of her hand. Very quickly her fine motor skills developed to manipulate foods and she became more sucessful. From the beginning she was quite accurate with a spoon although we often need three or four to get through a meal!

The gag reflex will seem alarming at first - do some reading about what it is and what you should do, I am not qualified to advise. This stage passes quite quickly!

What next?
Well, that's up to you! Every food is a possibility. Millie was eating curries and spiced food within a month of starting. So long as what you prepare is low on salt and appropriate for their age - why not?

Are you starting out? Would you like to write about your experiences? Get in touch as we're looking for the next baby blogger to take this forward.

Happy Days,

Kat x

Tuesday, 6 May 2008

Promises, promises...

Oh I make so many promises to you and rarely deliver. Am I, dare I say, a flake? The recipes and book reviews are coming, I promise :0) I have been working on a few other bits and bobs (and hanging out in the garden).

I took Millie to be weighed today and she has crossed another centile line.....in the right direction! Hurrah, she is finally gaining weight in a steady and healthy way. I was talking to another mum in the waiting room who was a bit worried about how little her baby was eating. Well, until we worked out the portion size from the recipe was 5 times the amount WHO recommend for a day! She said she felt a little more relaxed about the amount that went on the floor. It takes conversations like this to remind me of the early days of weaning, with an eleven month old who is confident and capable at the table I find it hard to remember. I have been exchanging emails with another Mama (If you're reading Sonia, I'm half way through a reply!) who is starting BLW with her daughter. I love hearing how well she is doing and how happy they both are, it reaffirms my belief that BLW is a lovely and gentle way to bring in solids. Sorry, lots of rambling tonight!

Here's to everyone starting out, enjoying the sun and to everyone who is a little older today. Cheers all round!

Happy Days,

Kat x

Thursday, 1 May 2008

Egg Fried Rice.

I realised that although we had given Millie egg yolk we had not progressed to whole egg. As the more canny of you will have guessed, we gave her egg fried rice :0) Not from the take-away, I hasten to add, but egged and fried by my own fair wok. I haven't written a recipe for you as Ken Hom's is the best I've found, I just left out the salt and groundnut oil. She absolutely loved it and especially enjoyed rice balls. She had it with a simple vegetable and chicken stir fry which I will post for you in the near future.

Happy Days,

Kat x

Friday, 25 April 2008

Double Helpings.

Despite frequent April showers the sun has been shining and we have been having some lovely picnics. I still haven't totally got my head around sensible picnic food, note to self: yoghurt is messy :0) Still no inspiration for the beans, I'm going to see my chum this weekend and pick her brains...

I have been teasing you all for days with promises of new recipies so here they both are for your enjoyment. Firstly, Zingy Chicken Nuggets it took Millie a while to get used to the texture but once she had these little beauties disappeared quickly. Secondly, Beany Spread / Dip a seriously yummy addition to our lunchtime menu. Millie is particularly partial to the inclusion of a bit of yoghurt before serving. Best of all for us Mamas, it uses store cupboard ingredients and whips up in under five minutes - perfect for those last minute panics (or is that just me?). Hope you all have a great weekend.

Happy Days,

Kat x

Wednesday, 23 April 2008

Magnificent Seven.

So after blogging about the sun I wake up to rain drops on my window pane, Grrr. Not for long though as the sun is out and we are planning a trip into town to buy some goodies. When I was at The Better Food Company last weekend I picked up a delightful mix of seven beans from Essential.



As you can see, Millie is so impatient for them that she wouldn't even let me photograph them without assistance. The mix is: Red Kidney, Chickpeas, Pinto Beans, Aduki Beans, Haricot Beans, Mung Beans and Black Turtle Beans. I am just not sure how I'm going to use them. Should I make a new pie, a stew or even a salad? I could make all three or something I haven't even thought of yet! Oh the possibilities. While I ponder feel free to add your ideas to the pot by using the comments section.

Happy Days,

Kat x

Tuesday, 22 April 2008

Hurrah for the Sun!

Hurrah, the sun looks like it's here to stay! We had a glorious back garden picnic today with one of Millie's friends. The girls had pitta with hummus, grated carrot & pear with yoghurt to follow (note to self, yoghurt in the garden is a bad idea).

I have recently had some success with chicken nuggets. Not from the frozen section as one of my chums thought but some zingy Jamie Oliver inspired delights. I will post you the recipe soon as well as the one for my butter bean spread.

Happy Days,

Kat x

Friday, 18 April 2008

Funny Lunch.

Last week I made Bubble & Squeak Cakes for Millie's lunch. She thought they were hilarious and giggled every time she picked one up. I gave one to our neighbour whose seven month old is one month into BLW. She liked them but was frustrated by the squishy-ness as she couldn't release them from her fists. I guess this just shows how skilled our little ones become in such a short period of time - there is only three months between the two babies.

These freeze well so are the ideal convenience food. I have suggested cooking the ingredients freshly but of course bubble & squeak is classically made from leftovers - we just never have any in our house :0)

Happy Days,

Kat x

Toddler Food.

I had a friend and their toddler round the other day. I made some risotto which was instantly renamed Rainbow Rice. I thought that was absolutely adorable so I have re-posted the risotto recipe with a new name. I know it's cheating to do the same recipe twice but I figured that a new spin on an old idea was acceptable.

Happy Days,

Kat x

Thursday, 17 April 2008

Book Reviews.

There are so many books on feeding children it can be difficult to know which ones will suit you and which will end up gathering dust. I have recently gone a bit crazy on ebay and have a huge pile of books for inspiration. Although I am a bit of a cook book collector (and have been banned from buying more) I will be using these books for my childminding business so I'm hoping to get away with it.

Over the next few weeks I hope to publish some reviews of the best and worst. I have already done a couple of small reviews on books and online recipes. I would really like to publish your reviews as well. If you have a book review please email it to me by clicking here and I will put it up both here and in the equipment section of the blog. Likewise, if you have a recipe (I know you do!) send that across too and we can all enjoy them.

Happy Days,

Kat x

Picnic Food.

Millie's first birthday is fast approaching and we are celebrating by holding a picnic party with two of her chums. We went for a picnic with one of the babies this week to scope out our chosen spot. As it was an impromptu trip I hadn't got suitable picnic food and ended up taking fish cakes. Big mistake. Huge. For a start, I hadn't got them shaped very well so they just crumbled. Of course Millie wasn't keen on taking them from a spoon when she could reach forward and take them from the tub. I'm sure you can picture the scene after that - one very fishy picnic rug and baby! So now I'm thinking I need to get on the case of picnic friendly food. I have a Butter Bean Sandwich Spread which I will post soon. Of course your ideas are most welcome, I'm sure you are all light years ahead of me on this!

On the subject of cake, which I posted about here, I am still not sure so will leave it out for now. Strangely enough, when I saw my HV the following day she kept telling me it was ok to give babies cake. I wonder if she's a reader...?

Happy Days,

Kat x

Friday, 11 April 2008

Hurrah for Beany Pie.

My testers Millie and Zachary are very happy with the beany pie and so it is now available on the recipe site. I hope you all enjoy it as much as they have. You will probably notice that it has both beans and millet, this is because I am trying to give a good protein source to Millie in every meal. My efforts are paying off as she has gained some weight and is looking much more healthy than she was a couple of weeks ago. She has been very busy this week and seems to be getting over her clingy phase and feeling more comfortable in groups. Hopefully this is the shape of things to come...


Happy Days,


Kat x

Tuesday, 8 April 2008

BLW and Tomato Allergy.

I have mentioned before that I am allergic to tomatoes. I have no idea whether Millie is / will be but as I can't prepare them or even have them in the house I won't be finding out any time soon.

When people find out I have an allergy to tomatoes they always say something along the lines of 'But what do you eat?!' as if there are no other foods in the world! Well I do just fine in avoiding them most of the time. It can be a pain as so many recipes have tomatoes or tomato sauces so I have come up with substitutes. My favourite is no-mato sauce which has taken me years to perfect (to the point of changing the recipe about a month ago) but is brilliant in stews or bakes which want tinned tomatoes etc. I am posting the recipe here for you as I will use it as an ingredient in the beany pie (the final version of which is waiting to go in the oven for tasting tomorrow). You may wish to change it to suit you. I use the pre-roasted red peppers from a jar as fresh peppers can become bitter but I would check what preservatives have been used before you use them for babies.

Happy Days,

Kat x

Let them eat cake?

I had a few friends and their babies over yesterday. Naturally I made a cake for the mamas, nothing fancy just a victoria sponge. I was totally shocked that they all let their babies have some cake. Is it just me that thinks this is weird or should we let them eat cake?


Happy Days,


Kat x

Monday, 7 April 2008

Be Prepared.

I am finding that I have to be prepared and I'm not as organised as I think I am. The other day I started making a risotto at ten to twelve. Unfortunately at some point long before I was finished, Millie lost patience with me and I had to finish the cooking with her clinging to my legs and wimpering. Mmm, not an ideal situation! So, I have been trying really hard to be preparing a meal in hand and so far it is working.

I mentioned in my last post that I had made a cottage pie. Well, Millie really enjoyed it (as did DH) so she has eaten her first meat. Yikes to the meaty poos though... It seems that anything is a big hit when combined with mashed potatoes. I think I will be using a lot in coming weeks.

I have been busy creating recipes for you which I will post over the next week or so. I have a super beany pie amongst other things which I hope you will enjoy with your little ones.

Happy Days,

Kat x

Tuesday, 1 April 2008

Fish Finally.

Well after months of Millie being less than interested in fish we have found the solution. Fish cakes. Although they take a little effort I really think it is worth it in the long run. After all, think about the time we have saved not pureeing everything for the last few months. I figure if I make a big enough batch with some for the freezer it is a worthwhile use of my time. DH was so impressed with them he chomped a couple before I got them to the freezer and Cat is over the moon that there is something interesting being dropped on the floor so a very happpy family :0)

Very pleased to have got a recipe up after all of my slacking! I have also made a cottage pie which I will post ASAP with an account of how it went down (she's yet to accept meat).

Happy Days,

Kat x

Sunday, 30 March 2008

Long time no blogging.

Hello! Sorry I've been so rubbish of late, as Mel says I've been super busy. I've barely managed to get the computer on twice a week for mail and Facebook - obviously a dire situation :0) Apologies to everyone who reads regularly for slacking!

So, what has been happening? Well, sadly Millie is once again failing to gain weight. She has only managed half a pound this year. We're hoping that it is down to a calorie intake / expenditure imbalance but we'll know more once we've been back to the hospital. We've upped the amount of grains, pulses and beans Millie has in an attempt to give her a good protein source in every meal. As for the rest of it, just trying to get higher calorie foods into her. She still refuses meat and fish and we don't give her dairy due to family history. Any ideas are most welcome! Does not help that in the last week we've all had this vomiting bug and she hasn't eaten much of anything.

Really excited at the prospect of a new blogger on the site......who will it be?

Happy Days,

Kat x

Wednesday, 26 March 2008

Anyone stating out who wants to contribute to the blog?

Hi Ladies,

as you might have noticed Kat is around less and less these days - and she has said she is going to get more busy rather than less.

After the time that we have both put into the blog I would hate to see if falter, but as George is soon to be 2 his experiences are hardly relevant to newbies any more! As such I cannot really add much to the blog.

Are you starting out, or do you know anyone who is who might like to contribute to this blog? If so, please reply and we can have a chat.

love

Mel x

Monday, 17 March 2008

Whistling Toddler!!

Okay...another theory to test!

George has today started whilstlin properly...previously whn he tried he just "breathed" through pursed lips! (lol)

I wondered when anyone else's lo's had started, and if this could be put down to good oral control courtesy of BLW??

Any thoughts or ideas??

love

Mel x

Sunday, 16 March 2008

An interesting theory

Hi Ladies & Babies...

An interesting question for you mummy's of older babies/toddlers.

A friend who has twins the same age as George has commented that the twin who elected to be BLW'd very quickly now chews food significantly better than the twin who was "conventionally" weaned with purees.

This makes perfect sense to me, but I wondered if anyone had any experience of this...either with twins or with noticing the difference between older siblings and new BLWers?

Anyhow...I hope you are all okay? Apologies as ever for being rubbish at posting, this last week has been filled with the joy of suspected chickenpox (false alarm!!). It never ends does it?? lol

love

Mel x

Sunday, 2 March 2008

Snack tastic.

Happy Mother's Day to everyone celebrating today. I was very touched by the hand painted daffodils on the card I received (yes Caramama, she is a supergenius!).

We don't tend to go in for snacks much. I'm guessing that as we move away from milk and towards solids they will become a feature of our day. Here is a simple popcorn recipe, well I say recipe but that is a loose description! Millie and I often have some plain popcorn at lunch time and DH and I like spiced sugar popcorn with a movie.

Happy Days,

Kat x

Friday, 29 February 2008

BLW Espanol stylee.

Woo-hoo, we survived! Very glad to be back in the UK although my feet are a little cold.

Buying food in Spain: if you're not too fussed about organic food then there is a wealth of lovely produce at the markets and supermarkets. Organic is a little more tricky but we managed to turn up enough variety for the week. HiperCor in El Corte Ingles is the best source but woefully inadequate compared to the UK. We heard rumours of a chap called Organic Mick but never made contact.

Eating out in Spain: a total joy! The Spanish love babies and welcome them into restaurants so you will be guaranteed a stress-free experience. Be prepared for a lot of attention - Millie has been passed around so many people that I wonder she recognised us when she came back. High-chairs aren't always available or suitable for babies under 12 months so if you can take one out with you I'd recommend it. Sadly smoking is still allowed in establishments under 100 square feet (I think that's the rule) and not all who should enforce the ban. Most restaurants are willing to make a special baby friendly dish in my experience.

Sadly there was not much time for creation so no new recipes just yet but give me a few days...

Happy Days,

Kat x

Thursday, 14 February 2008

Lots to say, never any time...

Hello, hello! I've had some trouble posting recently - Millie has given up one of her daytime naps and I never seem to have any time! We were both subject to the vomity bug last week so not much eating going on :0(

I have come up with a baby friendly hummus which I have been munching on all week. I have also been finding inspiration in the sunny weather; I love salad and this grated salad has been on our lunch plates the last couple of days.

I'm going to be away over the next two weeks so posting will be sporadic (nothing new there!). Any tips for BLW in Spain, let me know as we're headed to my mum's for a visit. Not feeling confident as she claims that you can't get organic veg...

Happy Days,

Kat x

Saturday, 2 February 2008

Remember us????

Hi again everyone....

We are still dealing with the joys of teething, tantrums and other toddler related fun.

We haven't really had any new food to speak of, but George is now eating every meal with either a spoon or a fork, but tbh he was mainly doing this before Christmas.

As promised, I have finally managed to upload some pictures, so I will add some old ones! I know the new readers will have no idea what I am on about, but those of you who have been with us for a while will remember all the unfullfilled promises of pictures from months ago....

so, we have a curry in Rusholme....



the reason for never giving chocolate to a baby on a long journey...



and a general warning of the perils of sloppy food!!!!



I am also pleased to report that I have completed my peer support training - and we had our first meeting at my maternity hospital where we will soon be going to help out ladies. Our "graduation" is soon too - and I will post a link should we make the press! And, joy of joys - the midwives at the hospital have finally come round to BLW...they did think I was a little crazy to begin with, but have been to a seminar on breastfeeding, and the speakers really advocated BLW...YAY YAY YAY!!!!

Now, I know I say this every time, but I will promise to make a better effort to post more. And again - my thanks to Kat for being so ace!

love

Mel x