Life is getting in the way.
I’m feeling hard pressed to find balance between blog, book, work, home and fun so I’m afraid I’ve been neglecting my blog duties.
Although I want to get back to this, I find I’m stuck for content today.
Stuck like a full bladdered airline passenger sitting in the window seat with the aisles seat owner fast asleep with tray down beholding a full glass of complementary airline soda.
I think I’ve been travelling too much.
I need that aisles seat…on the plane and in life in general.
I’m going to give myself a blog content break today and give you a sneak peak of an excerpt from the baby food cook book I’m writing.
Let me know if you think I’m on the right track, wrong track or window seat.
What’s on the Menu Mama?
It’s intimidating to bring a baby into the world, nurture and take care of them to make sure they don’t break.
At first we have only one form of sustenance to consider, breast milk or baby formula.
Once you wrap your head around that and get into a feeding rhythm guided by your baby’s non-verbal, yet fairly obvious pleas, you start to feel a bit more comfortable.
Then just as all the feeding stars align, it’s time to introduce solid foods and you start to worry about how much is too much, how much of each type of food should be offered, and when will I have time to visit the spa?
Rest easy, because at introduction, solid foods simply serve as a teeny appetizer to baby’s main meal of breast milk or formula.
Then they gradually get upgraded to side dish status, and finally the main event after baby turns around 12 months old.
So lucky for us there’s time to hone in on our baby food making skills along this long and winding feeding road.
I used to arduously consult baby “daily recommended” food charts when I was first introducing solids to my baby if only to gain confidence that I could follow instructions…and feed baby the appropriate amount of food I suppose.
I trusted the authors actually had babies, but if they didn’t, it would have been odd of them to recommend how much they should be eating.
If I was a baby and someone was recommending how much I should be eating, I would want to make sure they had someone just my size in their lives to use as a consultant.
Regardless, the charts would always act as a nice guide to keep my heart palpitations in check at the thought of giving baby too much food too fast.
I recall reading simple charts, and charts incorporating enough information to map out a plan to launch baby to the moon.
I found the basic charts served us best.
Besides, baby will give you cues if they’ve had too much to eat so if you trust in your baby and use the guide as a starting point for introductions and suggested quantities, you will be well on your way to having a happy and healthy baby.
So a simple guide is what you shall receive…at the end of this chapter.
Mama, I’m Full!
Baby’s appetite is self-regulating.
If they seem to be eating a lot at one point in time, it’s probably because they need it at that time.
Reversely, if they don’t seem to be eating as much as you would like, don’t fret because they probably just don’t need it at that moment in time.
As long as you continue to offer your baby healthy, age appropriate foods, at regular intervals, you can use their cue of turning away as a hint that they are full and have had enough for that feeding session.
I know the “chart” we’re consulting may say that Billy needs to eat 2 tbsps. of green beans right now, but honestly, the chart would only work the same for every baby if every baby were the same…tiny little robot babies, all with the same appetite.
It’s not a great idea to force an uninterested baby to eat either.
If they turn away, essentially telling you they are full and done, respect their wishes.
If you continue to force them to eat that last bite in an effort to make sure they are getting enough, that could translate later in life to a tendency to always finish their plate no matter how much is on there or how full they are.
Maybe that’s why I force those last few bites of lasagne down even when I feel stuffed like a turkey?
If baby repeatedly turns away from food and you are really concerned, keep a list of everything you are offering and how much they are taking in over a few days or weekly period and bring to your baby’s doctor to discuss.
There will always be certain foods that your baby doesn’t seem to like, but don’t throw them into the stratosphere never to be offered again.
Instead put the culprit away for a while and then re-introduce it a few days later.
Babies are fickle…some days they’re in love with a food and other days they seem to hate it.
Until baby is about 10 months old, they will probably be eating small portions throughout the day rather than living in a “3 meals a day” type scenario.
Once baby starts eating those larger 3 meals, try not to offer too many snacks or juice too close to meal time otherwise they may not feel hungry enough to eat their main meal which is the source of that proper nutrition you intended.
The Simple Baby Meal Plan Chart
So now that we’re well versed in knowing when baby is hungry, full or fickle, here is The Simple Baby Meal Plan Chart (“simple” as in the meal plan, not the baby) as promised.
This information is a compilation of details learned from baby food nutrition books and guides I’ve studied, all of which are outlined in the references section of this book, and what I’ve learned by having a real live baby myself.
There you have it.
Sorry, you will have to buy the book when it comes out in the next decade or two to get the chart.