Friday, 24 September 2010

YEAH - I've got the book.

Well I had to give up with the library and rely on my friend to lend me the book.

I'd been waiting for over a month for the book and you're only allowed them for 3 weeks so the borrow better have a big fine.

Fortunately Sally was in my area and popped in with the book about 2 seconds after I texted her for it!

I'm so excited to start reading it.  The husband wants to watch a dvd.  I'd better choose one that I've seen before so I don't get distracted!

If you don't hear from me for a few days you know why.

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Baby Weaning Party

On Monday I went to a weaning party at my local sure start centre.

Personally I went just to see what they were recommending and I thought I'd be one of those women sat at the back saying "yes but what about this, and what about that?" but I was pleasantly surprised.

I told her I was interested in baby led weaning and what she could tell me about it.  I was the only one who mentioned it but when she started talking about it a few women (mostly second time mums) all said they were interested.

The girl who did the talk was very non-judgemental and catered the talk to all of the mums, whether breast or bottle feeding, weaning before or at 6 months and definitely encouraged baby led weaning.

This was so different from a talk I went to in New Zealand (2008) where everything had to be liquidised and each new food had to be tried for 3 days before starting a different food.  I can honestly say I hated weaning my first daughter.

So to hear someone talk about giving your baby what you eat (within reason), large, easy to grasp foods, lots of different foods and even 'try to hold off giving them chocolate and crisps if you can!' was so refreshing.

In New Zealand I was given a list of all the foods that could be introduced to the baby only at certain months.  As a vegetarian, I was dying to give my daughter lentils, baked beans, brocolli, chick peas and other iron rich foods but most of these foods couldn't be introduced until she was 1 year old.  I was on a constant struggle with her iron levels and health care professionals kept trying to get me to give her meat.  I asked a health worker what is the best thing to give a vegetarian baby. Her reply - meat!

They even sent her for blood tests to check her iron levels and they were perfectly normal, which made me very happy.  But I also got conflicting advice too.  Another doctor was telling parents not to give children under the age of 4 or 5 meat.  He wasn't even vegetarian but said young children can't digest meat.

No wonder I was confused.

So second time around I'm much more relaxed, as second time mums are.  The lady giving this talk was talking about 'a window of opportunity' at 6 to 12 months.  She said if you want your child to eat certain foods then it is best to introduce it to them between these ages.  They are more likely to continue eating those foods if eaten early on during the weaning process.  (Better stay clear of the chocolate for a while then!)

Though I was a little disappointed with the description of it being a weaning party. I was expecting food, balloons and little gifts.  I got leaflets and a plastic spoon!

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Where's my book?

I reserved the 'Baby Led Weaning' book from the library about a month ago and it still hasn't arrived!  I'm itching to read it.

I'm off to a weaning party tomorrow at my local sure start centre and it will be interested to hear what they have to say.  I do hope they cover baby led weaning as it still seems like a 'new' concept.  I say 'new' but what did they do before blenders were invented?  And who decided that we had to introduce only one type of food every three days?

Obviously we know more about allergies now and introducing new foods every 3 days will help to establish a link between foods and allergies but surely by the time babies reach one year and are generally eating what adults eat they'll encounter foods that they haven't before.  That could start allergic reactions and I would hope that any responsive parent would realise what the problem is.

Before blenders were invented everyone would've been doing 'baby led weaning' perhaps just mashing things up a bit or even chewing them a bit then giving them to the baby.

Let's hope my book arrives soon, otherwise I'll have to buy it (or at least send a text to my friend to borrow her copy!).

Monday, 6 September 2010

Busy Busy Busy, Hungry, Hungry, Hungry

We've been so busy lately.  My husband is a wedding photographer and we've been visiting wedding fayre after wedding fayre.    We're not really routine people which suits us but I'm hoping this baby led weaning will also suit us as Anya has been coming with us and will continue to do so until she stops breastfeeding.  So we've been snacking on whatever we can get our hands on recently.

I love my food, always have and always will.  I'm not fat but I'll never be skinny!  Anya has now started to reach for my arm and drag it to her mouth whenever I'm eating anything.  I'm sure she'll be the same way regarding food.

Can't wait to get started!

I just have to think of what to give her for her first meal. Any suggestions?

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Which Highchair?

Anya is nearly 5 months old.  I'm getting very excited about starting to wean her and am waiting in anticipation of the Gill Rapley book I've reserved at the library.

She is grabbing at everything I put into my mouth.  I was having an orange lolly today to cool down from this gorgeous hot weather and she got very excited.  I let her have a tiny taste and she just grabbed it even more when I pulled it away.

I like the idea that baby led weaning is all about exploration and play at first.  That way I don't have to worry too much about nutrition and is she getting enough of her vitamins and minerals.  We're vegetarian and a doctor in New Zealand used to go on at us all the time about our iron levels.  She even sent my daughter for blood tests just to make sure (didn't do that with the meat eating babies) and her iron levels were great. That shut her up.  I'm sure her iron levels would've been even higher if I'd been doing the baby led weaning as her range of foods would've been so vast.  Over there I was following a chart which said what foods you can eat and at what age.  I was just waiting for the time to give Mia iron rich foods such as chickpeas, baked beans, lentils and all the rich green veg.  Now I won't have to.

My dilemma now is which highchair to buy.

We brought back a highchair with us from NZ which was fine at the time but as I spoon fed Mia I didn't use the tray much.  Thinking about it now I'm not sure which tray would be best for baby led weaning.

Do I get one that is really wide to avoid any spills, but does that also mean Anya will have farther to reach for her food? Or do I get a smaller tray so it's easier for Anya to reach things but find it falls onto the floor too much, or that I can't even get a drink on there too?

Baby led weaning is good for hand eye coordination as the baby is reaching out for the things they like rather than waiting for a spoon to be given to them.  Will the size of the tray make a difference?

I think I'll consult my fellow mums on this one, then do an obligatory visit to the shops to try them out.