I seem to do every “traditional” parenting thing differently. I co-sleep, I baby wear (my mother-in-law laughed when she heard me call it that), I breastfeed, so on and so on. Baby-led weaning, according to my husband, is most unusual of my non-traditional parenting ideas.
According to the website, baby-led weaning is a way of introducing solid foods that allows the baby to feed herself – there’s no spoon feeding and no purees. The baby sits with the rest of the family at mealtimes, and joins in when she is ready. Her parents offer her food in sizes and shapes that she can handle and she feeds herself with her fingers, choosing what to eat, how much and how quickly.
Peanut is 6 months old as of yesterday. While the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends breastfeeding exclusively for 6 months and then starting “solids”, there is research saying that it’s better to wait even longer. From what I got of it, they said that you should wait until your baby shows signs of being ready for non-breastmilk, such as: sitting up unsupported, reaching for food, lack of tongue-thrust reflex, watching you eat, and things of the like. In all of those aspects, Dea is definitely ready to start.
So yesterday we let her eat breakfast with mommy and daddy. Here is our lovely (messy) table. Ready to go.
I love her highchair (that we got at Ikea). It’s so simple and that’s what makes it awesome. She can get it all mucked up and it just comes right off. Here’s close up of Dea’s meal… since that is so interesting?
Eggs, toast (not bread, since that can get all mushy and hard to deal with in baby’s mouth), apricots, and bacon. Yes, I gave my daughter bacon as part of her first meal–and she loved it. Like father like daughter?
I gave her one half piece of bacon and it’s the first thing she grabs. She sucked on it for about 5 minutes before moving on to the rest of the food. She didn’t really ingest anything, but that’s not the point with baby-led weaning. We had a lot of fun with our food-toys!
We’ve continued to have fun with our food-toys since. She thought eggs were weird, apricots weren’t favored because they were hard to handle, she choked from a piece of melon last night (mommy’s fault for getting a not correctly shaped piece), she likes chewing on apples. Overall, we’re having fun with this experience. I’ve lost the pressure of keeping her away from the food (and oh boy did she want to be near it) and there’s no added pressure of actually feeding her. She deals with it. It’s so natural and easy!