Daniel has been doing full days at nursery for almost three weeks now (he goes three days per week) and it appears they dine like kings! They get a snack at 9.30am, a two-course lunch (savoury and pudding) at 11.30am and another snack at 3.00pm. The day’s menu is displayed on the noticeboard in the nursery and when we pick him up, we also get a daily report of what and how much Daniel has eaten. Morning snacks so far have included things like fruit scones, cheese scones, scrambled eggs, toast, pancakes and porridge. Lunches have been chilli and rice, curry with rice and naan, fishfingers, beans and chips, macaroni cheese with puddings of chocolate crispy cakes, pineapple upside-down cake, fruit with yoghurt or jelly. Afternoon snacks have included crackers with cheese and fruit, sausage rolls and veg pasties.
With the exception of one random off-day when he didn’t seem to want anything, the reports are that Daniel has been eating well at lunch and afternoon snack time, enjoying most or all of what he’s being offered. Morning snack often comes hot on the heels of breakfast as he doesn’t arrive until about 9am so it’s hit and miss whether he’s hungry yet by 9.30am, but often he does eat some of what’s on offer at nursery.
I’d been a bit hesitant to ask the nursery staff about how mealtimes work and how his self feeding is going, as I didn’t want to appear interfering or neurotic, or to suggest that I didn’t trust them with the BLW approach. However, this week I plucked up the courage to ask the nursery leader a couple of gently (tactically!) phrased questions about how Daniel is getting on with cutlery and she gave me a really nice response.
She said that Daniel is doing really well with his cutlery, when they load up the forks for him (so I guess this is what we’re used to at home, but it’s nice that the nursery staff think he’s doing well too!) The nursery leader explicitly mentioned that they were doing the loaded forks because we’d said that we were doing BLW at home, so I was really pleased that they’ve taken that on board. She also said that at first he would throw his whole bowl on the floor if they put it on the table in front of him, so they had to keep it away from him and just pass him the loaded forks. Again, so far, so familiar. However, she then said that after a few days he just stopped throwing his bowl, so now they can leave it with him! Well, I don’t know why Daniel thinks it’s acceptable to have one standard at nursery and another at home, but we’ll have to have a word!!
Drinking from a beaker is going really well now. He’s enjoying water, cows’ milk and (occasionally, as a treat!) some sugar-free squash. He’s still interested in what happens when he turns his free-flow cup upside-down, but for the most part, he’s more interested in proper drinking, and if we leave a cup of water around while we’re playing at home, he’ll come back to it for a sip periodically when he spots it. I think nursery is really helping in this respect, as they use the same beakers there (Tommy Tippee free flow) and presumably he’s also learning from watching the other children who have got the knack already.
Just for the record, we had another major gagging and vomiting incident last week. It was about 6.00am – for some reason he’d woken up unusually early and seemed hungry so I gave him a beaker of milk, a couple of those ‘breakfast biscuit’ things and some melon, all of which he went for with gusto. However, while he was still in his highchair eating the melon, all of it suddenly came back up again in quite a dramatic fashion. Like last time, neither Jon or I saw exactly what preceded it, and at first we both thought he was actually ill, as it was such a full-on wretch and he went quite pale and floppy for a while afterwards. However, after a couple more hours nap, he seemed right as rain for the rest of the day, eating normally and playing energetically with his cousins who were visiting. So, perhaps it was just a bit early in the morning for his tummy to cope with a large and quickly-consumed breakfast, or maybe some melon went down the wrong way.