It really doesn’t seem five minutes ago since my whole daily routine was geared up around the 12 plus feeds my hungry newborn was having, all day and all night. Those cosy days, nestled up on the sofa with a half sleeping, half feeding baby, watching endless series on Netflix and trying to catch a quick nap myself.
Now, seven months later, my days couldn’t be more different and one of the biggest changes has been the introduction of food and the serious lack of those daytime, sofa cuddles…much to my sadness. Florence is always on the go, she is curious, alert and so easily distracted whenever I am trying to feed her. Just before she was six months she became increasingly excited and dribbly whenever we ate food around her, constantly reaching out and trying to partake in our evening meal. We were given the go ahead from our health visitor to start introducing Florence to some solid food and so our weaning journey began. In this post I thought I would share with you some weaning essentials I have been using day to day that have made this process that little bit easier, and also my reflections so far after weaning Florence for nearly a month now.
After six months of looking after my baby I was begin to feel rather competent in this whole parenting thing. I knew what I was doing, and when to do them, and my days generally followed a lovely familiar pattern. However once I started to think about weaning, it was like I was thrown in the deep end again and I literally didn’t have a clue where to begin. Thankfully there are loads of books and resources online to help you along this journey and give you ideas of what to give your baby, when and how to incorporate them with your normal milk feeds. I purchased a couple of Annabel Karmel books and read them cover to cover, and still refer to them today to give me ideas of meal plans and snacks for Florence.
To begin with I wanted to start Florence off with purees and slowly build up to some finger foods and continue with a Baby Led Weaning approach from 7 months onwards. These books gave us some great ideas for making your own purees so we purchased a couple of ice cube trays and spent the weekend before blending, whizzing and freezing down batches of sweet potato, carrot and butternut squash mush! We have also been testing out some of these My Little Piccolo pouches of mediterranean goodness which Florence has been enjoying. I love the story behind this new brand and the flavour combinations have even left me having a quick taste from the bowl. Considering one of our favourite places is Italy and we adore the healthy approach to family dining and nutritious meals the Italians adopt, we were always going to champion these little pouches. I love the fact they add interesting flavours, a hint of mint or a pinch of cinnamon, to really excite your baby’s taste buds. The website also gives you some recipe ideas of things you can make with the purees, such as apple and apricot muffins or banana blueberry cake, which I definitely will be trying.
After a quick sweep of Boots I picked up a few more essentials which I use most meal times – umpteen packets of wet wipes (we like using Water Wipes), feeding spoons and bibs (I like these ones as they catch those chunks of food that miss the mouth!). I also bought one of those feeding, nibbler net things but I haven’t used it yet but it might be quite good for those foods such as mango or avocado that always gets a bit too slippery for her little fingers!
Finally, one of the first things we got before Florence embarked on her weaning journey, was her highchair. We have the Orb Highchair from Ickle Bubba which seems to do the job perfectly. It was really easy to put together and I love the clean lines and minimal look to it. It comes in a variety of fun and vibrant colours and has a newborn foam insert which makes it a bit more cushioned and a snug fit for little Florence. The seat can be swivelled 360 degrees which is quite handy rather than repositioning the whole highchair and the tray can be removed for easy cleaning – perfect after those messy meal times!
I would love to hear from you if you too have recently started weaning your baby. What other essentials do I need? I think I need to get some sort of splash mat, food catching sheet to place under her highchair as she continues to propel food left, right and centre! I look forward to hearing your tips and thoughts as you go along this weaning journey with me!
*this post contains samples gifted for review purposes