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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 11:23 am 
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I started off smooshing up beans, or breaking them in half. As far as oatmeal and lentils, I put a spoon in the bowl, which he'll use for about one bite before shoveling it in with his hands. In fact, the other night he ate several helpings of lentil soup with his hands!


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 12:01 pm 
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We cook oatmeal dry enough that it can be eaten in chunks. But generally I follow the rule that things that grown-ups eat with spoons can be spoon-fed to babies (if they will tolerate it, Malka didn't tolerate being spoon-fed in the beginning) and things that are normally eaten with forks or hands can be eaten by baby hands. Malka was very good at using her fingers to spoon soup into her mouth.

She also likes to try to "drink" solid food. Her new fun game is transferring a chunk of tofu into one of her tiny bowls (we use prep bowls for her portions instead of bowls designed for kids - they're a more logical size at this age) and then tipping the bowl into her mouth and fishing out the chunk with her tongue. She thinks this is utterly hilarious.

For beans, it's only recently that she's been a fan of whole, unadulterated beans. Soups seem to be the favored presentation (split pea or red lentil would be a great starter soup, Malka also loves black bean and those beans are small enough I wouldn't worry about real choking), otherwise I'd try mashed.


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 12:05 pm 
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I made the beans so soft you could mush them between your fingers and served small white or black beans and lentils. When we started w/chickpeas I smushed them. And oatmeal was on a loaded spoon to start but then devolved into fingerfood.

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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 1:08 pm 
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Thanks so much - it has been fun but I am still a little nervous about how/what to do so it helps to talk to a been there done that crew.


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 7:01 pm 
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We still squish chickpeas, but other beans are okay now. I used to just mush them once or twice with a fork. And like Ariann said, if we eat it with a spoon, I would spoon it to Will and just give him something else to eat on his own in between.. Or sometimes I would scoop out the chunks and serve over rice.

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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 8:38 pm 
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I was worried about starting solids, too. It's scary I think for all new parents. That being said, I pretty much did it exactly the way it's described in BLW. Maybe that was stupid of me, I don't know, but we never had any problems with choking and she loves eating. It's important to me that she doesn't just eat "baby" food. So she really does eat the same foods we do, just not super spicy (hot). The very first foods we did were chosen because they were easy to hold and soft enough to gum, so steamed broccoli spears and strips of baked tofu and that kind of thing. She also ate a lot of avocado strips with the peel on (because that was easier to hold). At first she just played with it, but then she got the hang of it and we did more stuff you could hold like dumplings and avocado rolls.

One rule I had was not to spoon feed at all at first. I didn't feel comfortable forcing anything into her mouth. Now that she knows how to feed herself, I spoon feed her sometimes.

I'm sure I have lots of posts in this thread chronicling all my worries and successes. It was fun! I really enjoyed that intro time.


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 8:59 pm 
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Oh I forgot another really easy to eat food we did a lot at first: sweet potato fries. I would just slice a sweet potato into fry shape and roast until soft and that was perfect for her to hold and gum.

At first I didn't get how big the chunks of food needed to be. It has to be long, kinda like a French fry, in order for them to grasp one end and gnaw on the other. She couldn't handle little bits of food until she was ready for the pincher grasp.


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:24 pm 
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Yes I am still figuring out how big to make the chunks. Tried a spear of avocado tonight - it was fairly firm so I thought I could take the peel off, but it just slipped from his grasp everytime so he gave up and just focused on the broccoli. He completely and totally ignored the spear of cucumber. Poor lonely cucumber. I had to eat it later ;)


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:28 pm 
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We found avocado is really tricky. It only worked as guac or with the skin still attached. Still, she's never much liked it.


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 2:29 am 
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I make avocado smushed on toast fingers. She holds the toast and eats off the avocado. She at 1/4 of a big avocado that way today. She also loves avocado sushi. Mmmmm avocado!

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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 5:11 am 
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Not sure if I mentioned this before, but I didn't know about baby-led-weaning until Beetroot was 9 months old. I'd seen a book at a bookstore while we were out with my parents and I flipped through it (just trying to pass the time) and decided to try it. Instead of pureeing B's broccoli-tofu and feeding him, I just put it on a plate and he fed himself like it was no big deal. I was so surprised! Purees and spoon-feeding was kind of fun with B because he was my first baby and stuff, but byt the time I had Raygold, I was so glad I'd learned about BLW because I feel like I saved so much time by not having to mash or puree everything up every single time we ate. (I still did some mushy purees, but it was nice to not feel ball-and-chained about it.)

Also:
Butternut wrote:
Oh I forgot another really easy to eat food we did a lot at first: sweet potato fries. I would just slice a sweet potato into fry shape and roast until soft and that was perfect for her to hold and gum.

At first I didn't get how big the chunks of food needed to be. It has to be long, kinda like a French fry, in order for them to grasp one end and gnaw on the other. She couldn't handle little bits of food until she was ready for the pincher grasp.

Yes! I did roasted parsnips, too.


Mmmmmm...Roasted parsnips.

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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 1:24 pm 
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I'm eager to do more of this BLW but the only things we've had any luck (and by luck I mean no choking-type incidents) with are:
avocado, messy but it worked when the avocado was at the perfect slightly overripe stage
steamed or roasted sweet potato spears and parsnips
some steamed broccoli in large spears, but it's difficult for me to get it to the right stage of soft-enough but not so soft it disintegrates as she picks it up hmmph

She's sooo interested in our foods but sometimes chew I guess so she lets it hang out in her mouth and starts freaking us out. I'd love to hear some ideas, the BLW "recipes" are soo meaty.


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 1:41 pm 
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BLW seems to push back the stage of actually consuming quantities of food for a lot of kids. Malka didn't eat much of anything until 10 or 11 months, despite being offered at every meal and having interest and sticking stuff in her mouth. She sucked on things, practiced chewing, and usually spit them out. There was a LOT of gagging and her fixing it by pushing food back to the front of the mouth - that is normal and okay. I would keep giving her your foods and let her keep trying to figure it out. We also did spears of various soft fruits (melons, mango, kiwi, citrus wedges, etc.) and softish raw veggies (like cucumber).


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2013 2:41 pm 
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That wasn't our experience. I can see how my friends that didn't do BLW got more food into their kids earlier by shoving in spoonfuls of puree, but Leela really seemed to eat well from the start. I've read that its normal for BF'ed babies to start eating more/nursing less at 9 to 10 months, but I haven't seen anything showing that that correlates with the use of BLW.

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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 12:17 pm 
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There were lentils in his diaper today!!! A lot of lentils! Who knew it would be so exciting?!


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Mon Feb 18, 2013 3:13 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
That wasn't our experience. I can see how my friends that didn't do BLW got more food into their kids earlier by shoving in spoonfuls of puree, but Leela really seemed to eat well from the start. I've read that its normal for BF'ed babies to start eating more/nursing less at 9 to 10 months, but I haven't seen anything showing that that correlates with the use of BLW.


Pretty sure the opposite of BLW is not shoving in spoonfuls of puree. Carlos eagerly eats spoonfuls of puree-consistency foods (cereals, yogurt) and also finger feeds other foods. No shoving involved.


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 3:35 am 
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kimba wrote:
Tofulish wrote:
That wasn't our experience. I can see how my friends that didn't do BLW got more food into their kids earlier by shoving in spoonfuls of puree, but Leela really seemed to eat well from the start. I've read that its normal for BF'ed babies to start eating more/nursing less at 9 to 10 months, but I haven't seen anything showing that that correlates with the use of BLW.

Pretty sure the opposite of BLW is not shoving in spoonfuls of puree. Carlos eagerly eats spoonfuls of puree-consistency foods (cereals, yogurt) and also finger feeds other foods. No shoving involved.

I didn't have to shove before I discovered BLW, either (Beetroot was eager to eat at about 5.5 months and totally didn't mind being fed, unlike Raygold who only tentatively started solids at 7 months and pretty much refused to be fed), but I totally have seen a lot of shoving -- I think this happens when babies aren't ready for solids, but the parents are excited to start them or think that's how it has to go down or want to top up their kids and get them to eat a little more than the kid might want. My sister fed baby rice to her 3 month old (I only know this because I saw a video on her ex-husband's fb page) and there was definitely shoving involved. I know she was just excited to feed her kid and had been given bad information (my mom told me to start Beetroot on cereal at 3 months, too -- he'd "sleep better" and I wouldn't have to nurse "all the time"), but her kid didn't really seem to realise what was happening.

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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 8:55 am 
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kimba wrote:
Tofulish wrote:
That wasn't our experience. I can see how my friends that didn't do BLW got more food into their kids earlier by shoving in spoonfuls of puree, but Leela really seemed to eat well from the start. I've read that its normal for BF'ed babies to start eating more/nursing less at 9 to 10 months, but I haven't seen anything showing that that correlates with the use of BLW.


Pretty sure the opposite of BLW is not shoving in spoonfuls of puree. Carlos eagerly eats spoonfuls of puree-consistency foods (cereals, yogurt) and also finger feeds other foods. No shoving involved.


Yeah, I thought I was such a good hippy parent for filling my freezer with ice cube-sized portions of lovingly prepared organic pureed foods! I admit, it hurts my feelings a little that feeding my baby with a spoon could be perceived as "shoving" food in her face. She loves it so much, it's more accurate to say that she shoves her face towards the spoon. We give her things to "feed" to herself about half the time, but it mostly ends up in her face, hair, clothes, chair, etc, and honestly I'm too lazy and busy to clean up after that multiple times a day. We're certainly not opposed to BLW, though, and it's fun to see her learning how to feed herself more and more!


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 9:54 am 
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I don't mean to hurt anyone's feelings! Sorry mooo and kimba! I haven't seen much of puree feeding - just a friend, who was literally trying to get one more spoonful in before her child took off, while her child was crying, because her daughter needed to eat more, and I can see that you can get more food in them that way than trying to wait for them to put it in their own mouths, not that anyone who doesn't BLW is shoving food into anyone's mouth.

Leela is getting so much more picky now. Its a bit frustrating. I make her a healthy meal and she tends to eat a ton of snacks that aren't as good for her. The playdates can be annoying because she is eating fistfuls of crackers instead of lunch, but she has also figured out that my husband keeps a cookie stash and she will stand in front of it and sign "cookie" over and over until he crumbles and gives it to her.

I am trying to remember the advice I got here - to measure things in weeks rather than meals or days. Otherwise there would be days where all she ate were pretzels and all other food ended up strewn around or fed to the dog. Our dog is gaining weight.

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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 1:00 pm 
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Has her pickiness started with her not feeling well? Miles gets very picky when he's teething and sick. These past few days have been horrendous food wise. He wouldn't even eat pasta or a bagel.

Regardless though if it just coincides with her sickness or not it's a very normal age for pickiness to start no matter how good an eater they were or if they ate puree's only or did BLW. Miles started getting picky around Leela's age. He still eats better then Reno did at his age but it sucks when you could make whatever you wanted for dinner knowing they will eat it and now having to make sure there is at least something he/she will eat.

I would have your husband move his cookie stash when she's not around and then not eat them around her if you don't want her to eat the cookies. Then when she signs cookies in front of where it was show her that they are "all gone." I've had to do that with Miles and some snacks. I don't mind him having things like that but I don't want him helping himself to cookies and such or screaming for them! It was so annoying. :)

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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Wed Feb 20, 2013 8:59 pm 
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You know, I think it has. Thank you for that. It has definitely been more challenging to have her not enthusiastically eat whatever we put in front of her. But I do think she is also clearer about her preferences. And maybe we shouldn't indulge her as much as we do. We get a bit excited when we can understand her, so we then reward that :)

She brought me a block of tofu this morning and asked for some now and we then made scramble, which she ate some of. But the roasted cauliflower over polenta was a no-go this evening. Instead she asked for and got a smoothie (she asks for a banana and then points to the vitamix).

Do you just give your kid what they want to eat (provided it isn't absolute junk) or do you say "okay well, you eat what we give you." I don't know when it makes sense to "make" them choose between eating good food or not eating so that they are hungry for their next meal and would appreciate thoughts.

This food thing is hard.

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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 3:00 am 
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Tofulish wrote:
Do you just give your kid what they want to eat (provided it isn't absolute junk) or do you say "okay well, you eat what we give you." I don't know when it makes sense to "make" them choose between eating good food or not eating so that they are hungry for their next meal and would appreciate thoughts.

When they are young, I am more like a full-service restaurant with them, catering to their healthy whims because I really just want them to get stuffed and put on weight (my kids are beanpoles like my husband and I'm worried the health visitors will blame it on us being vegan, they've already given me lectures on the dangers of non-fat diets (what the fizzle?!)). But now if my kids don't want my food, they get PBJ or nothing.

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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 12:31 pm 
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TheCrabbyCrafter wrote:
Tofulish wrote:
Do you just give your kid what they want to eat (provided it isn't absolute junk) or do you say "okay well, you eat what we give you." I don't know when it makes sense to "make" them choose between eating good food or not eating so that they are hungry for their next meal and would appreciate thoughts.

When they are young, I am more like a full-service restaurant with them, catering to their healthy whims because I really just want them to get stuffed and put on weight (my kids are beanpoles like my husband and I'm worried the health visitors will blame it on us being vegan, they've already given me lectures on the dangers of non-fat diets (what the fizzle?!)). But now if my kids don't want my food, they get PBJ or nothing.


I totally cater to Dahlia a little bit but it's tough to not end up on a slippery slope. It all started when she proclaimed a dish too spicy - I kinda agreed with her, it was ok for my tastes but pushing the limit. Then for a while she started proclaiming everything at dinner too spicy, so we had to really make sure H was leaving the red pepper flakes out of dishes (he gets super-anal about following recipes to the letter and it took some convincing) and also that she wasn't just trying to test our boundaries. Her go-to was always a grilled Daiya sandwich and while I think that's ok once in a while, especially on some nice whole wheat bread, I'm not thrilled with Daiya as a go-to food. But like Crabby, I don't want people telling me she's too skinny and I don't want food to be a source of struggle, so we never pull the "eat this or you're going hungry" card. Lately we try to make sure there's at least 1 thing she really likes at dinner - tofu or some roasted sweet potato are surefire - and concentrate on eating lots of that and a couple bites of everything else.
I hope Leela's pickiness is a phase, it probably is!


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 12:43 pm 
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Eh, I don't really cater meal by meal, I just try to offer things I think he likes frequently. I usually ask what he wants for breakfast, and if it's reasonable I'll do it (he almost always asks for "smoomie" and "hot toast"), but today he asked for popcorn and I said we could have popcorn in the afternoon instead. Lunch is usually kind of a tapas situation, and he eats enough of the things he likes to fill up. I'm pretty inflexible about dinner, because it's the meal I put the most effort into, and it's supposed to be a family togetherness time, etc. I always offer whatever I made, even if I think he won't eat it (how will he ever learn to like curry if I never give it to him?), plus some type of bread or tortilla as a fall-back, and lunch leftovers if he has any. Sometimes all he eats for dinner is tortillas and soy milk, but then he eats a big breakfast the next day and it all works out.*

*my child has plenty of extra padding, so I've never felt panicked when he doesn't eat well for a few days. He could live off his reserves for weeks.


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 Post subject: Re: BLW and Playing with Foods
PostPosted: Thu Feb 21, 2013 2:25 pm 
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OMG, "hot toast." I am dying of cuteness!!

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