Tag Archives: baby led weaning

Food Glorious Food

I’m participating in the Best Of 2009 Blog Challenge.  Every day this month, I write something different about what’s happened this year.  Here’s a belated post about my insight of 2009: it should have been written two days ago, but we are staying at the in-laws’ and I’m forced to be sociable and away from the computer.

David is a fussy eater.

Let me clarify that.  David eats four things: garlic bread, sausages, chocolate buttons, and Ella’s Kitchen fruit pouches.  David will not touch fresh fruit or vegetables, never mind put them in his mouth: they might bite back!  Rice?  Pasta?  Anything that might be served with a sauce or have a sauce touch it?  No way.  (Yep, he’s his mother’s son!)

Until last week, Joe and I could reassure ourselves that “food is for fun until one”.  We kept offering fresh fruit and vegetables, pasta, rice, different kinds of meat…  He would poke at them, look disgusted, and throw them on the floor, mostly before they’d been anywhere near his mouth.  We tried bribery: “Put this piece of banana in your mouth and you can have a chocolate button!”.  We tried letting him get on with it: more food ended up on the floor and none was eaten.  We tried all-out war: “You WILL eat this risotto.  Here’s a lovely spoonful…”.  It was spat out.  As a result, he “topped up” on milk, to the point where most of his diet was milk, with a few snacks thrown in.  He wasn’t sleeping as well as he should, he was waking up screaming hungry in the morning, and he was refusing to eat anything solid.

Two days ago, I did something mean, nasty and awful.  I took his milk away.

Not completely away, you understand.  I know that he still needs it for growth and development and vitamins.  We just drastically reduced the amount he drinks overnight.  We don’t offer it an hour before a meal or half an hour after: if he’s thirsty, he can drink water or juice.  We offer it in the newborn-sized Avent bottles, and when he finishes it he can have water, unless he’s desparate.  We’ve set ourselves the target of 5-600ml/day, and we’ve got there straight away.  David, as you can imagine, is unimpressed with this state of affairs, but still doing really rather well.

This morning, he got up with Joe, and for breakfast he ate a whole croissant and a serving of plain yoghurt with pureed blueberries and blackberries.  Half-way through this morning, he decided he was hungry, so ate a fruit pouch, two breadsticks, and a biscuit, and drank half a cup of juice.  At lunch he tried quiche and baked potato, which he wouldn’t previously have touched, and ate four slices of garlic bread.  At dinner, he spied the leftover profiteroles from Joe’s relatives’ Boxing Day family lunch, and was bribed into eating a fruit pouch.  That was followed by both profiteroles, a large piece of Stollen, and a whole cup of juice.  His total formula intake today?  500ml.

We’re not there yet.  He still doesn’t like the texture of anything runny, he won’t touch sauce, and vegetables are apparently the work of the Devil.  I was surprised that he ate the profiterole after the inital touching and poking, and still asked for more.  I don’t think it’s a taste issue, but to do with texture: it certainly explains why he’ll eat purees but nothing lumpy or slimy.

So, there we are.  My insight of the year: to do with taking away milk (and therefore being the meanest mother in the whole, world, ever, or so David will tell you) and making David eat Real Food.  It works.  I shouldn’t be scared to make parenting decisions and worry about what other people will think, because we need to do what works for us.  I needn’t worry about David’s reaction, because he’ll survive.  I am starting 2010 more confident as a parent than I ever was, and it’s fantastic.

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Filed under baby led weaning, David, Food & Drink, pictures

One

Dearest David

At 3.14pm today you turned one year old.  My word.

This has been an awesome month.  You’re still sleeping well, and having two or three solid hours’ sleep in the morning, and an hour or two in the afternoon.  This makes you happy and bouncy and full of energy when you’re awake, until you crash and fall asleep again: you’re hardly ever grumpy and tired.  You also like people other than Daddy and I.  This is a relief, I can tell you.

You’re still a fussy eater.  You won’t eat ANY fruit unless it’s pureed: if it’s not, you poke it and look disgusted, and refuse to put it anywhere near your mouth.  Vegetables are similar, but you do at least eat potato, peas, and carrots mashed together, and vegetable soup.  However, bread, biscuits, breadsticks, and ESPECIALLY garlic bread go down very well, as do Swedish meatballs from IKEA.  Oh, and chocolate birthday cake.

You’re getting better at walking: you can do it when you forget to be scared!  I don’t think your current growth spurt is helping, because it makes you fall over all the time.  You’re also too lazy to try sometimes: why bother when you can speed-crawl?

Daddy has been working a lot this month, and we haven’t seen him as much as we’d like.  You miss him dearly when he’s away, and you’ve figured out how to press the redial button on the phone so that you can talk to him.  (This means we need to keep his number as the last-dialled, so that you don’t confuse anyone else.)  When you’re together I no longer understand what you’re both on about, you’re so much on the same wavelength.  It seems to centre around fart jokes.

You play like a toddler now.  You sort things into groups, put things in places, try to fit one thing inside another or stick things together.  You are starting to use language and sounds to describe what you’re doing and what is happening around you, too.  New words this month include “Stop!” “Go!” “ERIC!!!” and too many others to count.  Eric prefers to hide (currently under the Christmas tree, which has the added bonus of things to BAT!) than to play with you.

You now travel in the front of my car.  I was getting fed up with the back of the passenger seat being kicked!  You have much more room in the front and you stay still while I strap you into your seat.  We then have a conversation until you fall asleep without a fuss, and I find myself talking to myself without realising.  When a traffic light turns green, you shout “GO GO GO!!!”.  (You have also done this when we followed an old lady in her Nissan Micra.  I’m teaching you patience, honest!)  The view in the front is much better than the view in the back!

You’ve had two birthday parties so far, and a constant stream of presents over the last few days.  That’s what happens when your birthday is so close to Christmas!  On Sunday we went to Grandma and Grandpa’s house and had cake and presents there, and today Kathryn and Harry and Benjamin and Naomi came to visit at Nana and Grandad’s house.  When you wake up from this nap you can open some more presents!  (And tomorrow, and the day after, and probably the day after that.  That’s why we’ve brought Daddy’s car down to Kent and not Mummy’s!)

A year ago today, I held you for the first time, and you were perfect.  You still are.  I love you.  We both do.

Love,

Mummy and Daddy

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Best Restaurant Experience of 2009

I’m participating in the Best Of 2009 Blog Challenge.  Every day this month, I write something different about what’s happened this year.

My best restaurant experience of 2009 is going to occur in about an hour, when David has woken up from his nap.  We’re going to get in the car, drive to McDonalds, and eat the dirtiest cheeseburger ever.  And then I’ll feel better about tidying up all day and my ENTIRE living space still looking like a bomb has hit it.

Also?  David will have chips, not a fruit bag or carrot sticks.  Who even likes carrot sticks, anyway?

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Herb Damper

Just a quick recipe for tonight.  I made a loaf of this at lunchtime to go with soup, and it was gorgeous. David loved it: I think he ate more than I did!

Damper is an Australian bread, traditionally cooked over an open fire.  The quantities I use make a small loaf, just right for the three of us. I reduced salt because David was eating it, and we very rarely add salt to anything now. It’s edible cold, but it’s best almost straight from the oven, in buttery chunks.

Ingredients
2 cups self-raising flour
pinch salt
1 tsp sugar
1 tbsp room-temperature butter
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup water
chopped chives/ dried mixed herbs to taste (I used about a tablespoon)

Method

Sift the dry ingredients together into a bowl.
Add the butter and rub between fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
Mix in chives and herbs.
Make a well in the flour mixture, and add the milk and the water. Mix together until a dough is formed.
Turn the dough out onto a floury surface, and knead until silky.
Form into a round loaf and cut a deep cross in the top.
Bake for 20 minutes at 200C, then reduce oven temperature to 180C and bake for another 10-15 minutes until done.

How do you tell it’s done? Pick it up (with oven gloves on!) and tap the bottom. If it’s cooked it’ll make a hollow sound.

Serve warm with butter.

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Eleven Months

Dearest David,

Today you turn eleven months old: only a month to go until you hit the big O-N-E.  Hasn’t this month been a rollercoaster?  I’m going to apologise now for not writing more about you this month, or taking more pictures, but in between the high-fever hallucinating and the throwing up, there hasn’t really been time.  (Swine flu.  Oh joy.  Incidentally, you ARE having the vaccine.)  Never mind, everything is OK when you have meringue.

I’m writing this as you sleep, during my precious work-time.   You are sleeping better in the day and at night because we’ve moved away from blankets and bought you a proper duvet.  The first night you slept under it you slept on your back all night with Donkey tucked in next to you: you haven’t done that since before you could roll over!  The fact that I could just take a photo of you asleep without waking you is testimony to the power of The Duvet.

This month, you mastered your walker, and then a few days ago you took a STEP!  And then another, and then another.  You’re not quite confident enough to walk on your own yet, but when you have your walker (or a chair, or your bead thing, or the high chair, or anything else the right height…) you can run!

We’ve had an interesting month with food, haven’t we?  Just after you turned ten months, you discovered chocolate buttons.  Daddy and I discovered that chocolate buttons are a brilliant bribe (sorry, reward).  This is good, because you seem to have hit the two-year-old fussy stage a year and a month early.  All the wonderful fruit and veg that you’ve been eating since you were six months old?  No thanks.  Pasta in a lovely spinach sauce provoked a tantrum.  Pears were even worse.  Why?  You ate pears last month.  At Rugrats and Half Pints yesterday you refused to even put cucumber in your mouth, never mind bite it.  It’s OK, though.  Daddy and I have come up with a solution: we’re just going to cover everything in hummous or yoghurt, then you won’t know that it’s vegetables.  That, or you can live on Mini Cheddars and chocolate buttons.  And meringues.

Your cousin Wilfred came to stay for a week this month and you had a great time together.  It’s the first time you’ve both been aware of each other, and it was lovely.  You’re (mostly) very gentle with him, although you do splash a little too much in the bath for him.  Watching you play peek-a-boo with him was one of the loveliest things I’ve ever seen.

Talking of baths: you adore them.  There have been days where you’ve had three or four in a day.  Not because you’re dirty (although meringue in the hair doesn’t help) but because you love them so much.  You can now request “bath!” and “splash!”, and there have been occasions when we’ve spent an hour in the bath, playing with ducks, bottles, the shower…  If you didn’t have to come out of the bath, I don’t think you would.

The way you play has changed so much this month.  You’ve figured out that stacking cups stack, and that the farmer in your farmhouse can slide down the chimney.  You’ve changed so quickly that you have next to no age-appropriate toys in the house, but your birthday and Christmas are only a month away, so you’ll have to hang on.  You love sliding the beads around on the bead thing, and you love your tambourine and maracas.  At Grandma and Grandpa’s house, you have a “phone” (a remote without the batteries in), which you pretend to talk to people on.  Talking of talking, you are learning new words almost every day, and you babble as though we can understand you.  You still have some very clear words, and yesterday you uttered your first phrase: “Get down?”.  I can’t wait to have a proper conversation with you.

Your understanding and social interaction are at a whole new level, too.  I asked you to sit down this morning, and you did as you were asked.  You hold your arms out and say “Up!” when you want to be picked up, and you frequently stop playing, give Daddy or I a hug, and then go back to whatever you were doing.  You also know when you’re being asked not to do something, and delight in disobeying us with a cheeky grin.  You’re visibly thinking more: we can almost hear the cogs whirring in your brain.

You’ve developed an unbreakable bond with Daddy now.  Well, you both laugh at fart jokes, find the word “poo” hillarious, and spend your time blowing raspberries at each other.  Maybe it’s just a man thing.  I love sitting back and watching you play together.

Son, I love you so much that I’ll almost think about forgiving you for throwing up in my car the other day.  (Yeah, thanks for that.)  You’re turning into a toddler so fast, and it’s amazing to think that this is your last newsletter before you turn one.  I miss my teeny-tiny baby, but you are so much fun now.  I’m not going to pretend that getting to this point hasn’t been hard, but now we’re here, it’s AWESOME, and I love you.

Lots of love,

Mummy and Daddy (who’s probably going to cry when he reads this)

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