Wednesday, 31 October 2007

Cheese and steamed veggies

Hannah's having problems cutting these teeth again, so was a bit upset and not very interested in food this lunchtime. I offered her some red leicester and emmental cheese, along with some steamed parsnip and carrot batons. She did spend a bit of time sucking at the cheese, but it was very lacklustre and after only ten minutes or so the crying started, so I took her out of the highchair.

She wouldn't breastfeed either, so ended up having lunch of expressed milk, as that's easier and less painful for her to eat. The Calpol and Calgel might have helped too.

We did manage to get a pic of the new bib in action though:

Tuesday, 30 October 2007

First taste of avocado

Hurrah for painting aprons, the postman brought us two just as I was getting Hannah into her high chair for lunch - how's that for good timing?! I can confirm that it kept her clothes clean and dry and was very easy to wipe clean, And there's plenty of room to grow, as technically it's for ages 2-3 years!

Anyway, on to lunch. A first taste of avocado, accompanied by some banana, was the main course today, and there was plum for pudding. The avocado was a bit slippy so hard to pick up at first, but Hannah is persistent and conquered it in the end. I'm not sure what she made of it, there wasn't much reaction to it at all.

The plum went down as well today as it did yesterday, except that today she managed to chew off a small chunk of it and made herself gag slightly, since I think she was still sucking at the main bit while it was in her mouth. Bit scary to watch, but she managed to spit out the offending piece without any intervention from me (which was easier said than done, I wanted to leap in and take it off her straight away). Shortly after that she started being much more interested in eating her thumb than the food, so I took that as a sign and put her to bed for a nap :o)

Hopefully we'll get some pics of the new bib in action tomorrow.

Monday, 29 October 2007

Two new tastes

I thought it was about time Hannah had some variety in her lunch, so today to go with her roast veggies she also had a bit of cheese, Emmental in fact as I didn't think that St Agur was very appropriate as a first cheese.

Cheese was a definite hit, she spent the first couple of minutes just sucking on the end of the stick I gave her and grinning. The roast veg went down a treat too, although I have discovered that it's best to break the shapes in half if you can as Hannah was having trouble getting at the soft inside bits Once I'd done that it was a lot easier, although seeing her with an entire roast potato in her mouth all at once is still rather alarming.

The other new taste of the day was plum. I really thought she'd pull a face at this, as it's a fairly tart flavour, but she didn't. I'm really impressed with baby led weaning - I know that it's meant to mean children eat a wide range of foods, but Hannah hasn't rejected anything yet. If you're thinking about trying it, it is a messy process though!

In other news, there are two painting aprons in the post to Hannah today from Grandma and Grandad (hello!) so once they arrive it should be a bit easier to keep Hannah fairly clean.

Sunday, 28 October 2007

Fromage Face

Lunch today was a swift affair conducted in the midst of a house cleaning mission, so it was more roast veg leftovers and a raspberry flavour fromage frais. Hannah seemed to be choosing the orange veg (carrot and sweet potato) over the other choices available.

Raspberry fromage frais was just as nice tasting as the strawberry one on Friday, and just as messy to eat. In fact this time we caught it on video:

According to the photo evidence below, this is today's verdict..

Flavour: Excellent

Targetting: Needs work

Saturday, 27 October 2007

Figgy Pudding

Today's lunch contained some familiar items, with a twist, plus a new item: fig.

For her main course she had potato, sweet potato and carrot all roasted with garlic, though she didn't have any of the roast garlic itself it did mean that the potato, sweet potato and carrot were infused with a garlic flavour. Very nice! She was especially keen on the garlic roast potato, though she had a bit of trouble because it was in chunks rather than batons. The carrot was also fairly popular, the sweet potato less so - I think that was mostly squished into mush rather than eaten.

Once she'd finished with the main course we cleared it away and brought out pudding: half a fig cut into 4 wedges. We weren't sure how she'd react to the fig pieces, but she dived straight in with gusto - definitely a fan! At times she was trying to cram 2 or 3 pieces into her mouth at once. By the time she'd finished, she'd completely eaten one wedge and sucked all the flesh off the others leaving three soggy slivers of skin.

Here she is chomping on one fig wedge while grabbing enthusiastically at another two:

So a successful lunch with two new flavours proving a hit: she lapped up the garlic roasties and seems to have found a new favourite food in figs.

Friday, 26 October 2007

How do you remove fromage frais from a baby's nose?

We tried something new today. Fromage frais. I loaded a weaning spoon (the one that came free in our latest Bounty bag) with some strawberry fromage frais and gave it to Hannah. She immediately smeared it all over her hands. The second attempt got into her mouth and for the first time I can say she definitely enjoyed her food - I could tell by all the "mmmmmmmm" noises she kept making! I think about half the fromage frais went down her, the other half she decided was a fantastic fashion accessory for the modern baby, and it also made a great face pack. I think there's still some up her nose that I didn't manage to get out.

As well as fromage frais I gave her some boiled potato that I'd reserved from our mash last night. This also went down well, and boiled potato has the bonus attribute of retaining its shape fairly well. The ubiquitous chips (shapes, not actual chips yet!) were given a good seeing to and the end result wasn't too mashed. For the first time I saw Hannah open her hand in front of her mouth to try and get to the food left inside her fist, she kind of pushed her palm into her mouth to suck it clean. Will keep an eye on this, as it definitely shows development!

Since I didn't have the camera battery charged, and there'd been special requests for pics of Hannah trying her first fig (hi Auntie Jo!) that's been reserved for tomorrow's lunch instead. Assuming we can find the battery charger...

Thursday, 25 October 2007

Not very interested in food today

For the first time, today Hannah wasn't very interested in her lunch. I think there was a combination of things going on. Firstly she was tired, she'd started yawning as I put her in the high chair. Secondly she'd recently had a really long breastfeed, more than twice as long as her normal feed these days, so she was probably quite full. Finally, the food on the menu might have been a tad annoying.

I served up a banana, three peach slices, and a rice cake with a bit of butter spread on it. I managed to break the rice cake into thirds which worked OK but wasn't ideal. The peach slices (out of a tin) turned out to be far too slippery for Hannah to pick up easily. She did manage to get one up to her mouth after a while, and seemed to enjoy it, but it escaped pretty quickly so she rather lost interest in them. And the banana was overripe too, so quite slippy to handle and falling apart at the least provocation.

All in all not a great success, but tomorrow, as they say, is another day.

Wednesday, 24 October 2007

Another roast dinner

We served up the last of Sunday's roast dinner leftovers today, something I'm sure Hannah will be pleased about - lunch has been a bit monotonous this week. The roast parsnip, squash and sweet potato was still popular though and it looked like more actually went down this time too.

There was a pear on offer for pudding, but it was rather overripe, so a bit difficult for Hannah to pick up and get to her mouth. I resorted to holding bits of it up in front of her as that made it easier for her to grab.

Quite a messy lunch, as proved by this photo:

Tuesday, 23 October 2007

A surprising success with courgette

Courgette is, to my mind, a pretty dull vegetable. Since there was one using up space in the fridge, it was cut up into 8 chip shaped bits and pan fried in a bit of unsalted butter (gosh that sounds ever so posh!). Along with the courgette I served some steamed yellow pepper, and a bit of banana for pudding.

I was frankly amazed, the courgette virtually all got eaten! About all that was left behind were strips of green skin, all the innards had been sucked and gummed off, and presumably swallowed. Hurrah!

The yellow pepper was still popular, but more difficult to eat as it seemed rather slippy so kept escaping. Bits of banana were devoured too - the size of some of the chunks was rather alarming, but Hannah seemed to have no problems with them.

The trick with the muslin made another appearance, equally successfully so I think that we'll be carrying on with that until we can get some of those bibs that cover them from head to toe (or at least head to waist).

Monday, 22 October 2007

Ladies who Lunch

Hannah had her first lunch out of the house today, in the middle of Tumbletime at a local leisure centre. Not organised to have done anything special for the occasion (for example relatively mess-free), there was cold leftovers on the menu. I'd taken a whole change of clothing after yesterday's mess, but didn't need it in the end as the cunning trick of tying a muslin around Hannah's neck before letting her loose on the food meant that remarkably, she didn't cover herself in it.

I definitely prefer feeding her in a high chair though, as having her sat on my knee at a small plastic picnic table wasn't ideal. Still, not bad for a first attempt at BLW out and about.

Sunday, 21 October 2007

Are cats edible?

Unfortunately it turns out that cat tails are chip shaped enough to at least attempt to eat them - we very nearly started the day with an early breakfast of fur. It was swiftly removed from the field of play, and actual food was served at lunchtime as normal.

Today was roast dinner, with parsnip, butternut squash and sweet potato on Hannah's menu. I prepared far too much, so there'll be leftovers on the menu in the week. All the items on offer seemed popular, although she pulled a particularly impressive face at the first taste of parsnip. The squash and sweet potato were softer than I first realised, and they quickly turned into mush when she picked them up, so I'm not sure how successful they were at this stage.

We had the first evidence that food has been going down today, too - definite signs of digested banana, if you know what I mean. Good job we were warned about what it would look like, else we'd have thought she'd got worms :o)

Not been able to get any full bibs yet, so we're still producing a rather large amount of washing. Today saw the first complete change, as the butternut squash had, as the name suggests, squashed itself into everything. We'd seen those bibs in Asda a couple of months back, but they don't seem to have any now. If you're reading this and know where we can get some, please leave a comment, I'm not sure how much more the washer can stand!

Saturday, 20 October 2007


Today saw the first taste of banana, despite dire warnings that it turns to black cement once squidged and dried onto various household items. It went down very well - in fact for the first time bits were bitten off and chewed without the help of hands being involved. Obviously the chewed chunks then dribbled out down Hannah's chin rather than being swallowed, but one step at a time!

Baby corn was on the menu again, too, as there was some left in the fridge from the other day. It made an impressive squeaky noise as she chomped down on it, and the little bits of corn made the clean up operation interesting after they were set in the banana cement.

It was the first meal en famille as well, as we were tucking into bread and soup while Hannah destroyed her banana.

Friday, 19 October 2007

One step forward, one step back

After yesterday's progress with carrot, today was a step backwards, caused by evil teeth. A broken night and not feeding properly today means there's not much to report, Lunch came straight out of the fridge, and was a couple of sticks of cucumber, some yellow pepper and a piece of baby sweetcorn. No new tastes, but I figured that the cold food would feel nice on hot hurting gums,

We followed it with a Calpol chaser and as s a result Hannah's now napping. Hopefully there'll be more to report tomorrow, when Daddy will be around to help with lunch :o)

Thursday, 18 October 2007

Baby corn and actual eating!

I've been thinking about this weaning thing, and I've decided that the next two weeks will feature one meal per day, as that will take us to the 6-month point when the World Health Organisation (and most health professionals) say you should start weaning. Since the BLW guidelines were based on babies who were offered, but didn't necessarily eat, food from 18 weeks old, I don't feel bad about having started 2 1/2 weeks early - in fact I'm really pleased that we got as far as we did exclusively breastfeeding. I'll see how we go after that point, and introduce the extra meals over a couple of weeks I think.

Today's new taste was baby sweetcorn, three bits of which were served along with three left over bits of steamed carrot from yesterday. Hannah headed straight for the sweetcorn and seemed intrigued by the texture. In fact she liked it so much that at one point she attempted to get two bits in her mouth at once, one in each hand.

The carrot on offer seemed to go down well again - possibly even literally. I'm fairly sure that today Hannah actually swallowed some of it. No evidence of carrot eaten yesterday as yet (if you know what I mean...) but I'll keep checking.

Two things I leant today, by the way: 1 - it's time to invest in some bibs that cover Hannah from head to toe, and 2 - it's important to either roll up long sleeves or remove long sleeved tops before getting started. Oh well, that's another thing on the washing pile...

Wednesday, 17 October 2007

A Forest of Food

Yes, as you might guess from the title, today Hannah had her first taste of broccoli. She didn't appear very impressed with the taste, but did enjoy pulling it apart and throwing it on the floor. And it turns out that one of our cats quite likes broccoli, so there wasn't even that much cleaning to do afterwards.

Along with small trees of broccoli, carrot and pear was on the menu. Carrot seemed by far the most popular, and a small amount might even have been swallowed - I'm sure there'll be evidence if it was, so I'll report back! The pear didn't really stand out against the colour of the high chair tray, and didn't get that much attention compared to the veg. I think putting it against a coloured background might help next time.

Tuesday, 16 October 2007

Pepping it up

Today's adventure in the Wonderful World of Weaning involved raw yellow pepper. Hannah seemed to prefer the taste of this - at least I didn't spot any grimaces this time. Like last time with the cucumber it took mere seconds to grab and gum the offerings.

As I was slightly more prepared this time, we even have evidence of our exploits, I give you Exhibit A.

I'm fairly confident that nothing actually got swallowed again, perhaps we'll move on to food that's actually been cooked in a day or two - she can't eat salad ingredients forever!

Monday, 15 October 2007

Hello World!

Welcome to our blog, all about Hannah's experiences of having baby led weaning inflicted on her by her parents. That'd be us then...

The cast:
Mum Cate, 32
Dad Neil, 29
Baby Hannah, 23 weeks

The plot:
I can't remember how we first came across baby led weaning, but having read up about it here, it seems like a fantastic approach for the inherently lazy mum who can't face all that cooking, whizzing, freezing in ice cube trays, defrosting, spooning malarky. Making chip shapes out of various foodstuffs has got to be easier...hasn't it? Well we hope so anyway, and we're going to be giving it a go.

Well I say "going to be" when actually, while on a visit to the grandparent's at the weekend, Hannah was trying to nab bits of cucumber off the kitchen counter. So obviously the thing to do was to cut off an inch or so, cut it in half and give it her to play with. After a few seconds she gave it a funny half chomp,. half lick, and screwed up her face as if to say "what's this nonsense you're giving me?". Apparently this wasn't enough to put her off though, and for the next 5 minutes the cucumber was thoroughly explored with fingers and mouth. I'm not convinced that any was actually swallowed, but we've been finding cucumber seeds everywhere since then - even on her knees, which since she was wearing trousers at the time was quite a feat!

So anyway, now I either need a large plastic mat or a dog to keep the floor clean for our next experiment. Thoughts?