We started the long and messy road of weaning a few weeks ago but despite trying hard we got nowhere fast. Molly either didn’t open her mouth for anything other than her bottle, or she spat the food straight out (not in distaste, she just couldn’t work out how to move food to the back of her throat and swallow).
We started and stopped as there was not point in forcing her to eat but just last week we turned a corner!
We bought one of the Nuby “The Nibbler” food feeder and almost instantly we went from having a baby that did not open her mouth for food to one who loved it. We put banana in the net and let her suck at it and found that, despite trying to give her mashed up banana previously with no success, that she loved it!
We then, over the course of a few days, tried adding in other foods that had not been puréed and found that Molly loved to gnaw on cucumber, melon and watermelon that had been cut into large chunks. We then went back to the purées and again she didn’t like them. This time we added a few slivers of cheese to them, heated, and tried again – she devoured them!
Now she is keen to try everything but we have found that things need to have flavour to be enjoyed. This would be the same as us as we don’t like bland food so why would she.
We also found that she preferred thicker than instructed baby rice and baby porridge.
So this got me thinking, how did you encourage your wee one to eat and what are your baby’s favourite foods?
My to five tips to help weaning:
1: If they refused try adding a bit of flavour – cheese was our favourite.
2: Try making your purées a little thicker – we almost instantly went from hating the baby rice/porridge when we made them thicker.
3: Make feeding fun! Over exaggerate how pleased you are that your baby ate a certain food. Don’t worry if this makes you feel stupid it will help.
4: One spoon to mummy/daddy, one spoon to baby – they definitely copy what you are doing so if you are happy eating the food they will see that as a positive thing. Don’t waste your time trying to pretend to eat the food, they may be young but they are not stupid! Oh and make sure you act like you love it (yep they are the best vegetables you have ever eaten, promise).
5: Wait a few minutes before giving up on feeding. Sometimes we found that Molly just wanted a wee gap between spoonfuls for a play, singsong, or just to relax. Many times we would have given up but found we managed to have another good few spoonfuls in her tummy. Repeat a few times – it may mean it takes half an hour or an hour for only a few spoons of food but what is the rush?