I figured it was about time for a part 2 of our Adventures in Solids.
Part one I spoke about how we chose to go the traditional route – by introducing McKenna to solids via purees. That was all fine and dandy, until about a month in – where my little girl decided SHE was the boss, and no longer wanted to be fed via spoon. She started boycotting food and fussing during mealtimes, and I started stressing and pulling my hair out. It was a ton of fun for all involved.
So I did what I have done with every other parenting decision I have thus far – stopped stressing, revaluated the situation and adjusted our strategy in accordance with what our baby was telling us – that she (as she always does) wanted (/demanded) more independence. I went to the library, checked out Gil Rapley’s Baby Led Weaning book, and re-educated myself. And we haven’t looked back.
McKenna is now almost completely self-fed. We do, however, feed her the occasional organic baby food pouch for the days we are on the go, and unsure as to where and/or when our next meal is coming.
Baby led weaning has helped our family with regards to making healthier choices. Granted, there are days where Matt and I still have unhealthy dinners…. and on those days I do cook a separate meal for McKenna. But those days are becoming less and less, and Matt and I are eating healthy more and more. It has also been motivating me to visit farmer’s markets, to buy fresh and organic when time and money allows (although organic or not, I still cannot justify spending 7 dollars on a pound of blueberries), and to take a better look as to where our food is coming from and the nutritional value contained therein.
A friendly word of advice to any mothers who are looking into starting baby led weaning for their own children? Get a dog. Baby led weaning is messy, because we never intervene unless McKenna needs our help. This means that food ends up everywhere – in her hair, in her diaper, on the floor, on the walls.. which makes for a very happy baby, and a happier puppy at the end of the day.
Baby led weaning is messy, it can be time consuming (meals can take upwards of half an hour not including cleanup), but it has paid off, big time for us. I am now watching McKenna develop into a little foodie. There is nothing she will not try, and that is all we can ask for.
And now, for the pictures (WARNING: If you do not find pictures of babies covered in food endearing, as I do, do not scroll down. :)):