Similarly to breastfeeding, bottle feeding, pumping or formula people have a shocking amount of opinions when it comes to how to feed your baby or how to introduce solids. Some days are good, some days are bad, most days are a challenge.
Trying new food and new ways for your baby to eat can be stressful. Before Carolynn turned six months old we have the conversation with her pediatrician on how we planned to approach food other than milk with her. Baby led weaning, purées (store bought vs made at home) some type of combo etc. We were told they don’t encourage baby les weaning or solids right away due to an increase in likelihood of choking. Valid.
We decided to take the hybrid route. The idea of being able to have her join in, to some small effect, with what we eat for dinner sounded good to us. In terms of purées and pouches we’ve really come to love the Happy Family Organics brand, specifically the Happy Baby line. Carolynn has had their pats, pancake/waffle mix, teether crackers, yogis, puffs and pouches. You name it, we’ve had it. My one issue with these pouches is stage 3 is IMPOSSIBLE to find in stores nearby me. Almost weekly we do the rounds of three Targets, two Walmarts, Market Basket and Whole Foods to try to track them down. If anyone knows something I'm missing about how to track these down, please let me know!
That being said what we’ve found the main benefit of the hybrid to be is flexibility. Traveling, stick a pouch and some puffs in the diaper bag. Out to dinner? Order some steamed veggies as a side. I will say as someone who has some undiagnosed levels of anxiety when it comes to motherhood.
Choking is a real fear.
That’s why I bought the Dechoker to keep next to her highchair. We thankfully haven’t had to put it to use, but just knowing we have it gives me some comfort as we venture further into trying new foods.
Some friends of ours had purchased the Solid Starts program which they shared with us. This was SUPER helpful specifically to figure out what foods to try when, how to prepare them and when and how to allergen allergen foods. I’m definitely someone who thrives on a schedule so their “Allergen Free 100 First Foods” list was a God send. We definitely have followed this loosely since it can feel like a full time job to meal prep for Carolynn alone. I do love to go back and reference and cross off the 100 foods as well as check out the prepping tips and recipes. How small is really small enough for a bite of some new texture… I still don’t know.
Now that we’re at the 11 month mark, miss ma’am is really into feeding herself. We’ve gotten a fun system down where she gets her plays, usually of fruit, to feed herself while we feed her a pouch, usually of veggies. This girl can eat, even though she’s petite. Watching this sweet girl discover new things is a joy and constant entertainment, even though now she also enjoys feeding Porter about as much as she likes to feed herself. Carolynn also tried lemon for the first time and was a big fan, apparently she takes after her mama with her love of vinegar and tart foods.