Let me get straight to the point I’m lazy, I breastfed because it was easier than faffing about with bottles, sterilizing and timing feeds. When I heard about a weaning process which involved throwing sticks of food at a baby I knew immediately this was the one for me.
Surely though there must be more to it than learning to cut carrots lengthwise instead of into circles?
So I read the book. (pats herself smugly on the back for putting in such monumental effort)
To date it is the only baby book I have ever read (unless you include We Need To Talk About Kevin).
Let me summarize: Cut your carrots lengthwise instead of across.
Oh and there’s lot’s of gubbins about child development and health benefits in the book but the main points are throw food at baby, sit down and watch as your child redecorates the kitchen.
The question we got asked the most was won’t they choke? The honest answer is yes they do, but not in a bad way. Both of mine did the gagging, red face thing once or twice (usually raw apple to blame) we got used to thwacking them on the back and watching them pick the offending foodstuff back up and have another go.
Eeh Bah Daughter once started gagging in the pub on a whole chip she’d rammed down her throat – Grandad lovingly thumped his greedy granddaughter on the back and the chip shot onto the table next to us. We decided it would be rude to ask for it back.
Normal rules for baby feeding apply. Don’t leave babies alone with food. As I said throw food in baby’s direction, pull up a chair, sit down and watch.
Both my children are baby led weaned and here’s what I have learned:
Buy a plastic sheet for the floor. It will catch most of the mess.*
Embrace the summer months – as soon as the temperature allows strip baby naked and stick them outside – Bingo! No cleaning of kitchen required at all.
Have a camera at hand. Best. Pictures. Ever.
Never feed them spaghetti in tomato sauce indoors. Learn from my mistakes and leave it outside.
Be prepared to repaint the kitchen walls/ move house. Honestly what the fuck do they put in Weetabix? I cannot get that stuff off my kitchen walls.
Bibs. You know those pretty ones that fasten round the neck with cute pictures and funny quotes? These aren’t the bibs you’re looking for. Repeat. These aren’t the bibs we’re looking for. Move along… What you need is a cover all with sleeves type thing (get them from Poundland they’re um, a pound).
Give them cutlery from the start – we didn’t do this with my daughter and if she’s hungry she stills shovels her food in with her hands.
Restaurants and cafes are going to hate you. I always apologise for the disgusting mess my children make although the couple of times we’ve gone posh Eeh Bah Daughter ate impeccably (Booking a 6 course taster meal with a 9 month old baby was not our smartest move).
I can highly recommend moving to California to start the weaning process. The combination of warm weather and living in other people’s houses worked perfectly for us with Eeh Bah Son. I’m lazy enough at home but on vacation standards plummeted to new depths, each morning I stripped Eeh Bah Son naked, plonked him on a beach towel on the floor and handed him whole avocados.
Baby led weaning was great the first time round and essential for our second child as I simply didn’t have enough time or hands to spoon feed. My daughter is 2.5yrs old now and eats whatever we eat – including a Thai red curry this week.
So leave the pureed stuff for the Hollywood starlets, restyle your kitchen into Dexters Kill room and enjoy!
*This is a lie. There is not a plastic sheet in the world big enough to catch the mess. But BLW is really, really worth doing so please don’t be put off by the fact your kitchen is going to be ruined. Look at some nice pictures of our favourite foods instead: