The hassle of solid food - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-15-2010, 01:39 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I feel like a lousy momma some days...
DD is 9.5mo and enjoys the food that we offer her. She won't eat much but is generally "into solids". The problem is that I am oftentimes too lazy to actually offer her any food; it is such a hassle! I have to come up with a snack (ex. piece of fruit), cut it up, put her in chair, put on bib, give her one piece at a time (otherwise she puts them all in her mouth and gags), wait for her to eat, clean her up (change clothes if necessary), eat the remainder of the piece of fruit so that it doesn't go to waste, etc...
Most of the time, I think about offering her food, but instead just nurse her
SO much easier, cleaner, and time-saving!

Am I doing her a disservice by not offering her food more often? I'm kind of getting paranoid because recently we went to a few 1st b-day parties and the 1-yr. olds were tearing up the snacks and birthday cake! DD is NO WHERE near ready for all of that!

Am I the only one who does this?! Other moms in our playgroup are so excited about giving solid food.

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Old 02-15-2010, 01:45 AM
 
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I kinda feel that way too.

Alicia, wife to an loving and faithful DH, and mama to three fantastic though nutty children (cs, then an HBAC, then a VBAC!!).
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Old 02-15-2010, 01:47 AM
 
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I've felt this way numerous times, which is why I simplified.

Now all her clothes are "food/play" and then I have some nice outfits saved for outings.

I stock up on not so messy foods like blueberries, bananas, green pepers, peas, etc. That way she can feed herself, which she demands, without much mess.

Mama to expecting Babe 2
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Old 02-15-2010, 02:32 AM
 
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prep for anythign can be a real time-consumng pisser, be it prepping for a meal or painting a house. For fruits and veg, I've had good luck with a five-dollar 2 cup chopper. Just wash and whiz, skins and all. A few pulses and raw chunky food. For days when I don't feel like hauling out the mandolin or food processor. Which was most of the time. Try it! Just wash and whiz. In the kitchen. In other rooms, whiz, wipe, then wash.
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Old 02-15-2010, 02:36 AM
 
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Yep, I am right there with you! DD is 10 months old and the most she eats is those organic puff things (and really, she throws them on the floor mostly, but the dog loves them) and some little cut-up pieces of different veggies, which are only offered if they are being eaten by someone else. I figure she will get into solids in her own time... and hey, at 31 inches tall and 20 lbs, she isn't hurting for calories, that's for sure!
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Old 02-15-2010, 02:49 AM
 
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My DD is 9 months and she LOVES food, will eat most of the things, but I often feel lazy too. When I started I was very enthusiastic and loved giving her new things, now I've kinda felt on a rut and a lot of times give her what's easier. Most of the time she eats what we eat, but we kinda keep eating the same things and I really want her to have variety in her diet. I made the promise to myself that at least me and her, will eat more things and more healthy.

I think is easier for her to learn how to like foods now than later on, so I should do my best to help her with that. But believe me, I know what you mean.
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Old 02-15-2010, 03:01 AM
 
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I usually just feed my DD little bites of whatever I'm eating. There usually seems to be something on my plate that she can eat. Tonight at dinner she had some brown rice, earlier for lunch she had some cauliflower and she had a little banana at breakfast. I often hand her or feed her small bites (that I make her direct into her mouth), so there really isn't any mess. Sometimes I will also use a mesh feeder, which helps keep the mess down, but allows her to do it herself.

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Old 02-15-2010, 03:07 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Abraisme View Post
I usually just feed my DD little bites of whatever I'm eating. There usually seems to be something on my plate that she can eat. Tonight at dinner she had some brown rice, earlier for lunch she had some cauliflower and she had a little banana at breakfast. I often hand her or feed her small bites (that I make her direct into her mouth), so there really isn't any mess.
This is 100% what we do. Very occasionally we will cut up an apple or something for her to teethe on, and even more occasionally we'll give her some puree. But if it's all about taste and texture up until a year, then I feel like little bites of my food are enough. We also have a really good bib.

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Old 02-15-2010, 11:43 AM
 
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I'm the same way.

DS (10.5 months) likes a snack in the morning, which is normally some organic puffs or Cheerios. No prep, and the dog cleans up any mess.
We're never home at lunch time, so sometimes (if I remember) I'll grab an apple and a clean shirt for him before we head out. When he wants it, I take a bite to get it started for him, and he'll gnaw on/play with the apple for hours. Mess is minimal.
At dinner time, he usually just has bits of whatever we're eating. If it's not something I'm comfortable giving him, he eats puffs/Cheerios.

I figure I only have a few more months of food laziness before he actually needs meals, so I don't feel too guilty about it now.
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Old 02-15-2010, 12:50 PM
 
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We also do just little bites of what we are eating. Meat I usually chew first, but other stuff I either smash with a fork or just let her have it.

I set just a little piece down on the table at a time (we sit at the coffee table) and she feeds it to herself. It's no mess as long as there's not a lot of it. If there's a lot, she dives into it and smashes it everywhere.

Also, I give her a big hunk of fruit or carrot and she gnaws on it. Keeps her occupied while I am eating.

Occasionally we do something messy, like lots of peas or banana because its cute, and just plan to give her a bath afterwards.

I also got this adorable little baby smock that covers almost all her clothes from H&M. It was like $7.

But I think they say that for solids, "under one, it's just for fun."

ETA: and I REALLY only began doing solids because she would keep trying to get into my food when she saw us eating. But I keep doing it because it's cute watching her eat. I am otherwise of the OPs opinion, that its a big hassle. lol

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Old 02-15-2010, 02:39 PM
 
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I was just coming on here to post, "I'm too lazy to start solids!" Is there a list of things my baby (7.5months) can't eat- so that I can just give her what I am eating without having to worry? What about the salt, oil and spices that I cook my food with? I hate to cut off a little of whateve veggies we are having, and then roast it plain just for the baby, who will then eat less than a tablespoon.

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Old 02-15-2010, 03:09 PM
 
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Originally Posted by femalephish View Post
I was just coming on here to post, "I'm too lazy to start solids!" Is there a list of things my baby (7.5months) can't eat- so that I can just give her what I am eating without having to worry? What about the salt, oil and spices that I cook my food with? I hate to cut off a little of whateve veggies we are having, and then roast it plain just for the baby, who will then eat less than a tablespoon.
No need to make them plain. We always just gave the kids exactly what we ate. Although, not if is was super spicy. However, I have a friend from South India and by the time their kids are 18 months or so they are eating the same spice level as the rest of the family. (I can't even eat most of it myself) I never understood the lack of flavor for babies. Veggies just taste so much better with a little salt/spice and oil.
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Old 02-15-2010, 03:42 PM
 
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We do pretty much what most PPs have said, but I wanted to add:
For mess reduction, we use this bib. It catches everything - really!! I put the bib on, roll up his sleeves, and put the tray on the highchair - the bib sticks out right to the tray. Sometimes stuff sneaks onto his clothes, but it really does help a lot. (He can still throw things on the floor though. )

Also, to save some prep time, we often just eat leftovers for lunch - you can purposely make extra of LO's favorites.

I do agree with OP (esp away from home) that sometimes it is so much easier to just nurse than to deal with food! I do think it got easier for us, though, when I stopped thinking that DS needed to have separate food. It is a lot easier if he just eats when & what I'm eating.

ETA: Oh, to femalephish, from what I've read, the only food you need to avoid in the first year is honey, unless there is family history of allergies. When introducing a new food, just space it out by 3-4 days and watch for signs of a reaction. DS eats seasoned veggies/foods & some plain too, just depends on the food & the way we're preparing it.

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Old 02-15-2010, 04:01 PM
 
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At some point in time in the US, processed baby food in jars became the standard by which all first foods were to be judged. Because jarred baby food is bland and boring, therefore, baby food must all be bland and boring.

I don't pay any attention to warnings that baby food should not be seasoned, since there's no good reason for them. Most spices and seasonings are good for you, many of them help with digestion, and they all add variety. I regularly add turmeric, ginger, garlic, cinnamon, saffron, cumin, basil, oregano, and black pepper to my LO's food. Not all at the same time, obviously.

There IS some genuine concern with adding salt to food for infants. Because babies' bodies are so little, there's a risk than oversalting their food can throw their electrolytes out of whack and harm their kidneys. Breastfed babies get all the sodium they need from breastmilk. Lots of cultures consume WAY more salt than is necessary: I just read yesterday that the average American consumes 3.5 g of sodium every day - about 2.5 times what our bodies need. People in the UK consume even more than that. So we should be really extra careful with the amount of salt we're giving to little ones, because most of us overdo it without even realizing it.

We use almost no salt when we cook at home (DH is really sensitive to salty stuff), so I don't worry about giving DD bits of whatever we're eating. I don't deliberately add salt to food I'm making specifically for her, but I will add a bit of butter or olive oil to her purees if I think they could use it. And herbs/spices, of course.

At the moment, DD (9 months) is sitting in her clip-on chair at the table next to me while I type, happily nibbling on a handful of frozen peas that I thawed in the microwave, a few pieces of leftover roasted cauliflower with dill, half a pear that I cut up in pieces for her (I ate the other half for lunch), and a handful of Cheerios. I, too, dislike cleaning up after messy lunches, but none of those foods require more than a quick swipe at hands and face to clear off the gunk.

Other not-too-messy foods that are my frequent fallbacks: bits of cooked carrot (I just cut a carrot into tiny pieces, boil until soft, then store in a jar in the fridge), small cooked pasta (orzo is good), cooked rice (I usually just give her leftover rice), bits of apple or potato cooked until they're soft but not mushy, frozen green beans reheated in the microwave and cut into small pieces, and the ubiquitous Cheerios. I had to laugh at the PP who suggested blueberries - we tried these this week and they were the messiest thing EVER!!! No way, I'm not trying to scrub blueberry juice out of any more of DD's clothes.

ETA: About avoiding foods - definitely honey for infants (even cooked) because of the very small but dangerous risk of botulism. But also, depending on how conservative you want to be about avoiding potential allergens, you may want to be a little careful about introducing foods like dairy, citrus, tomatoes, wheat, egg whites, and strawberries. At least watch carefully for reactions when you do give them. Allergies to nuts and shellfish can be potentially lethal, which is why they recommend waiting until at least 1-2 years before offering these foods - there's a better chance of a LO surviving an allergic attack at that age, if it happens. And IMO, there's no good reason to give babies chocolate. More for me!

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Old 02-15-2010, 04:52 PM
 
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Try giving her a really large piece of a somewhat harder food. I was astonished at the tiny tiny bites Lina would take if she got to control the size.

Babies can't take bites out of small pieces, so they put the whole piece in their mouth. And then, it seems as though, they don't really feel they've taken a bite at all unless they work it off themselves, so they reach for another piece. Or they grabbed up a handful in the first place because grabbing many is easier than picking up one and that whole handful goes in.
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Old 02-15-2010, 06:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for all the suggestions and for the reassurance that I'm not the only mom who avoids solids
Blumooned, I totally need a bib like that seeing as most of DD's food usually ends up right in her lap!
I think I need to just bite the bullet and get some of those organic puffs! I haven't offered DD any processed foods yet, but those just seem so darn convenient when we are out and about!
For now, I agree with Bezark; I am just going to enjoy my last few months of food laziness!

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