The Big Switchover

I guess this post is not so much about baby-led weaning per se, but just about weaning in general. The major news to share is that in the past couple of weeks, we seem to have reached the stage where Daniel’s main source of ‘fill you up’ food is solid, real food rather than milk. Last week, for the first time, it appeared that the solution to a grizzling session was… wait for it… a snack! A real, life, “sit me in the highchair and give me some ricecakes please mum” snack!  Unlike a couple of months ago, I’m fairly sure now that I would no longer get away with a ‘milk only’ day if I couldn’t be bothered! This is not to say that there’s not often still plenty of food flinging going on at mealtimes, but (particularly at tea time) Daniel will now seem very ready to sit up and concentrate on eating a decent amount of solid food. He’ll also accept (or, more often, demand!) a bit of a snack whenever he sees the grown-ups having a little something between official mealtimes.

In counterpart, his breastfeeds have now dropped to only three or four ‘boob-fuls’ per day: first thing in the morning, last thing before bed, and then sometimes just one in between. Various things still affect this though, for example, he’s teething again at the moment so a quick comfort feed is sometimes what’s required, whilst last week when we were on holiday with lots of exciting cousins to play with, he’d go for six or seven hours without even thinking about milk. So I think we’ll be on track for dropping his daytime breastfeeds when he starts nursery in three weeks’ time, and as of yesterday I’ve started trying to use up the stores of frozen breastmilk by offering it in a beaker once a day. Yesterday he seemed pretty dubious about the concept, but it was only just after lunch, so we’ll see how it goes with offering it at different times of the day. I’ve also tried offering him cows’ milk a couple of times recently (just the leftovers from little milk jugs in tea shops on our holiday!) and he really seemed to like the taste – another good sign for when nursery starts.

Skills wise, he’s now very tidy with loaded spoons and forks, though we’ve still a fair way to go with scooping up the food himself. His unrelenting need to remove his plate from the suction mat and look at the underside is also a bit of a barrier to letting him go at it all on his own. His chewing is coming on very well though (no back teeth yet, but the unsettled nights of late suggest they’re not far off) and now that he is in the ‘copying’ phase, we can encourage him to chew his mouthfuls properly by making exaggerated chewing faces at him. He does sometimes stuff in more than he can handle, which stops him in his tracks for a while, but his eject mechanism is pretty effective – if unattractive – once he realises what’s gone wrong!

Enjoying a Cornish pasty with Granny at Falmouth Harbour

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About babyledweaningyork

Hi! I’m a second time mum embarking once again on Baby-led Weaning. A couple of years ago, I blogged about our experiences introducing our son Daniel to foods with a BLW approach. Now our little Daisy is here, I thought I'd keep a record of how it goes this time around - just for fun!
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2 Responses to The Big Switchover

  1. spethy31 says:

    Another amusing post. When I was reading some of it out to my husband he asked “has she got a spy-cam here or something….?”

    It’s good to see someone encountering the same issues as us – a snack now sometimes able to solve a grizzling session, extra feeds when teething, other times the ability to go several hours without, managing loaded spoons… but the best one is studying the underside of plates/bowls having removed them from the suction mat! Absolutely! What about cutlery – does Daniel love studying the handle and waving it around?

    Like you, I’m not sure that I could get away with a purely milk-only day any longer, even if some days he hardly eats any solids. Toast is almost a guaranteed success though, and often kick-starts his appetite for other foods. Bill has spent a couple of full days apart from me in preparation for my return to work, and he seemed to manage fine with no milk during the day despite the fact that he drank only water and ate little. It’s encouraging to know that he still very much enjoys his breastfeeds and I’m hoping to continue for as long as he wants. I’m pretty sure I’ve seen him signing for ‘food’ which is encouraging.

    I love the picture of Daniel trying a Cornish pasty. I’d love to let Bill try things like that but I’m always reluctant to risk the whole thing being flung on the floor!

  2. Thanks for taking the time to reply!

    About the suction mat issue, I’ve discovered that it’s the suction mechanism itself that fascinates him most, so if I’m feeling brave, actually putting the plate or bowl down on the highchair tray without any suction mat seems to prove less of a distraction, and he picks it up far less! He doesn’t seem so interested in studying cutlery, but more often than not he will throw it firmly to the floor once he’s taken his mouthful, rather than handing it back to one of us or just placing it on his tray.

    I think you have a real point about ‘kick starting’ appetite. Although I’ve read in books that food throwing is a signal of “I’m full”, I think for Daniel it’s a kind of warm up! He often throws the first few things we give him, but then he settles down into his eating, and quite often, once we grown-ups think the meal is over and we’re tidying up, he’ll get a second wind and start picking up tiny bits off his tray and out of the food-catcher on his bib!

    If you’ve had Bill’s 12-month HV visit, I’d be interested to know what your experience was regarding the advice on weaning. If you’ve had chance to read my latest, you’ll know that I was rather taken aback, but not necessarily in a bad way…

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