If you haven’t heard of BabyLed Weaning (BLW) it is a method of adding complementary foods to a baby’s diet of formula or breast milk. Babyled weaning allows babies to control their solid food consumption by “selffeeding” from the very beginning of their experiences with food. The term weaning should not be taken to imply giving up formula or breast milk, but simply the introduction of foods other than formula or breast milk. And of course, this is yet another potentially controversial topic in some parenting circles so just take a deep breath and remember, to each their own…
So this is the method we plan to use with little Rose given she is getting ready to try solid food. She is already incredibly interested in water from cups and can even drink it – albeit inefficiently. This from a baby that won’t suck a bottle! She watches us eat like a sociologist studying the apes and she is a curious little one with great hand eye coordination so I’m pretty sure things are going to make it into her little rosebud of a mouth. Or at least in the proximity.
Her new high chair just arrived so once we get around to assembling it, we’ll be sitting her at the table during our meals to help her watch and emulate eating. Her halfbirthday is next week when we’ll have a house full of friends visiting so it will be a great opportunity to give her “the first meal”. We’ll need lots of photographers and videographers on hand
of course. With BLW, she’ll be feeding herself, when she is ready. We’ll provide food cut in pieces appropriate for her (think fingersized) so she can grip the food and have part of it sticking out from her little palm to gnaw on. (Don’t worry Mom, we won’t let her choke!) She’ll be eating the same food we eat instead of purees and she’ll be feeding herself (sans utensils) so it is going to be wildly messy. The drop cloth has been purchased and we plan to outfit the entire family and maybe also the neighbors in aprons.
There are some great blogs that outline BLW but this website is the best: http://www.babyledweaning.com/. My favorite part is the gallery of pictures of babies happily eating pork chops, pasta, and even lotus root. Not sure what that last one is but I like the sound of it. http://www.babyledweaning.com/gallery/.
At first meal times will just be another activity and really more about experimenting and playing than eating, and that is ok. I just can’t wait to see her reaction to this whole new world. Like most humans, we love food. We can really appreciate a fine meal and we both love to cook. With parents like us, I anticipate Rose will be a healthy eater. I love that the BLW approach allows her to explore at her own pace, feed herself, and begin her journey with food in a natural way. And yes, in a very VERY messy way. So we are stocking up on wipes and getting our tea towels laundered and ready to be put to work. I haven’t decided what her first food will be…bananas, steamed carrots, or avocado. I’m thinking avocados, yes definitely avocados. Wish us luck! MumsySus