Saturday, August 8, 2015

|| baby talk ||

So here's a total "mom blog" post.  

While in the States, I received several surprised comments that Liesl feeds herself and eats whole food (no baby food - yay!).  

I thought it might be interesting to a mom or two to share my limited, one-child experience.  

Obviously, I've got to post the whole disclaimer:  This post is not medically sound or medically documented.  This post is not intended to replace the advice of your pediatrician or doctor or medical provider.  This post is simply the experience, not advice, of one mom.  Whew!  Hopefully, we are in the clear now.  :)

I first heard about self-feeding (technically called baby-led weaning) through another Christian girl's blog.  It got my interest and made sense and I did a little research (aka googling) about the topic.  One of the articles mentioned that Europeans adopt this method of feeding their baby.

Liesl began with avocado as you can see in the picture above.  That was probably the second or third time she'd eaten avo.  Also, I did feed her mashed veg (butternut squash with green beans) for a bit, especially when I was in a hurry for her to finish eating.  

But after a while, I quite enjoyed Liesl being able to feed herself.  The main reason is that it kept her occupied.  About 11-ish, Liesl would start to get cranky but I still had school to finish with the girls.  So, I'd put her in the high chair and begin to feed her one thing at a time.  Peas.  Then butternut.  Then chicken  (Meat wasn't until 8/9 months).  Also, baby biscuits (Americans call them cookies).  She also has eaten a lot of watermelon 9 - 10 months.  And currently, bananas are her favorite thing.   She even points and says, "nana".  :)

A huge disclaimer:  it is (very, very) very, very messy.  If you are a working mom, it probably won't work for you.  There's often times that Liesl gets a bath after lunch.  And I also have the luxury of calling the maid to clean up if I'm too busy (or tired!) to do so myself.  Also, I spoon feed her porridge and any soft or runny foods (creamed spinach, mashed potatoes, etc..).  Having said that, here's just a few more observations.

Liesl hasn't choked, yet.  I haven't had to administer the Himelech maneuver on her.  

Another reason I'm big thumbs up for self-feeding is that it is whole, natural food with no preservatives or added sugar.  Now I'm not a crunchy mom.  Yes, Liesl has sugar but I try to limit it.  (Although, she had a marshmallow today...I even feel guilty typing that.)  But the idea of limiting her sugar through self-feeding really appeals to me.  

I also feel (once again, I'm NOT a doctor) that the bigger the food, the better.  It's better for her to rub a slice of an apple up and down on her gums than for me to dice it up in small pieces.  Also, I don't feed her grapes or hot dogs.  And for the longest while, I cut her bananas in sixths (yes, I'm a new mom - hahah!).  Today, she ate half a banana; then, I gave her the other half.  

Also, I don't leave her to eat by herself.  If she were to choke, I'm very near.  

Another downside of self-feeding is travelling.  It took me a bit to find my groove when we were first in the States.  We ate out a lot and it is messy.  But soon, I got the hang of it.  We also discovered cheese sticks in the States!  Liesl loved those!!  I limited her to one a day but I know she'd have more if I let her.  As a side note, I met a Brit on our flight who also does self-feeding.  

So there you go.  A huge mommy post.  Has anyone else have experience with their baby self-feeding?  Love it?  Hate it?  Too nervous to try?  I'd love to hear!


Anne Williams said...

I didn't with Paul (deputation = a huge mess on the go!), and I waited to start Ellie on food until our return from the states over the holidays last year. She was 8 months when I started her on homemade baby food. Within two months she was eating chicken, pork, fish, fruit, steamed veggies, etc all on her own. To this day, she is a good eater! Much better than Paul but I think that's because Paul has some sensory issues where he literally can't swallow certain foods.

content2be said...

I didn't know that it had a name! Baby food is expensive and time-consuming to feed to them. Except for Elise, all my girls have been eating table food since 7 to 9 months old. So much easier to have them eat what we are eating. If my milk supply is low, I have supplemented with baby food at 5 or 6 months though. Your Liesl is such a doll; I just want to squeeze her!