Friday 1 February 2019

Baby Led Weaning

Hi everyone!
I have seriously been putting off this blog post for so long as this pregnancy is kicking my BUTT. But I'm finally writing it for you all, I had so many requests about BLW - Baby Led Weaning and what I've been feeding Lillian. So I'm hoping this helps some of you!

I am in no way a doctor, so if you are wanting to feed solids to your child, please make sure you get the OK from them. 
When your babe is ready for solids, I highly recommend giving the foods to them slowly to make sure they don't have any allergies. 

Lillian has been formula fed since she was born. Before solids, she was on 24-30oz of formula a day in 24 hours. She would drink around 6-8oz every 3-4 hours. 

We started Lillian off with some baby cereal and purees. She seriously HATED the baby cereal at first and I think that was from the texture. But she eventually got used to it. It took her a little bit to figure out the spoon as well when we fed her. 
For physical food she could touch + try, we gave her avocado first. It's recommended to start off with big pieces for them to eat. 

I found this photo super helpful for when we first started out, you want to basically just cut them into pieces the size of your finger. 

Lillian wasn't too sure what to do with any of it, so don't be discouraged if it takes your babe a while to figure it out.
It is a big step to do BLW and it definitely takes a lot of patience. 

Like I said before, make sure you start off with just one piece of fruit or vegetable. That way if they react to it, you know what food caused it.

We basically did a mixture of puree's and BLW at the beginning. We wanted to make sure she got the solids she needed first of all and then after we would offer some avocado or banana. 

Once she hit the 8 month mark, there were more options with purees for her. They were more thick and lumpy and she absolutely HATED THEM. Anything savoury and lumpy, she would refuse. In the evening, we would try and give her a heated up puree of a bolognese or chilli, and she would just gag. 
We were in England at the time while she was going through this phase. We noticed the UK has a way better selection for purees and we wanted to bring them all home to be honest. Any savoury puree we offered her, she would refuse. So she was just basically on anything that was sweet while we were there. We kind of just stuck to purees while we were there as it was just easier for all of us. (Plus we didn't have any dogs to clean up any mess on the floor lol.)

We started offering her more and more food as she got older. Avocado was always our go to, as well as banana. 
As you can see, she wasn't the biggest fan of watermelon, and to this day, she still isn't a huge fan. She kind of just throws it on the floor. 
Another fruit she isn't a fan of is raspberries. She definitely has an issue with really soft textures I think.
She absolutely loves blueberries, I've always cut them in half since we've started and we haven't had a problem. Even to this day, I cut them up just to be on the safe side.

It wasn't until we got back from the UK from vacation where we really took BLW seriously. 
Let me tell you, Preston was always terrified to try BLW because he didn't want her to choke. And that's totally a valid fear. 
This is as new to you as it is to your child. It's definitely a learning experience for all of you. 

This is what our daily schedule looks like for us:

6am: Wake up and has an 8oz bottle of formula. 

6:15am: Back to sleep, we are so blessed that she always wants to go back to bed, this way I can get some extra sleep too.

8:30/9:00am: Wake up and have breakfast. This normally involves anything from scrambled eggs, avocado, banana, blueberries, toast, healthy pancakes + normally some water and a yoghurt at the end. Play time.

10:30/11:30am: Nap time

1:00/1:30pm: Wake up and eat some lunch. This could include a puree if she's feeling it but if not, I'll make her a sandwich of some sort (grilled cheese, tuna, avocado salad, chicken), you guys can look up some ideas for sandwiches. If we have any leftovers from the night before from supper, I'll offer her that too. 

3:30/4:00pm: Nap time, sometimes she will have a bottle before this nap but sometimes not.

5:00pm/5:30pm: Wake up + play. I'll normally just give her some Gerber snacks to tie her over as I'm probably making supper at this point. Anything I'm making, if I know it will have too much salt, I cook hers on the side. Or if what I'm making has huge pieces, I always cut it up in her own little bowls to make sure they are the right size for her. Seriously, whenever I get those bowls out, she gets so excited because she loves food more than I do lol.  

7:00pm: Bath time and wind down. She is obsessed with baths and this has been a routine of ours since she was around a month old. Sometimes she will have a shower with me (with dads help) or I'll join her in the bath. I love to play some relaxing music during this time and always have. This way she knows it's time to wind + calm down before bed. 

7:45am: She has been rejecting her bottle before bed lately but we always offer her a 4oz bottle. 

8:00am: Bedtime

This schedule changes normally everyday except for her bedtime routine. I've kept this strict since she was born. She's pretty good for the day as long as she has her morning nap. But since becoming super sore while pregnant, it's been hard for me to take her out during the day. So that's why it's been easier to stick to this schedule. We always do our grocery shop on the weekends to get everything for the week for meals + snacks. I don't really plan Lillian's meals out, she has just been eating what we have been lately for supper. When it comes to breakfast + lunch for her, I always make sure she has avocado, bananas, blueberries, yoghurts + eggs in the house. 
I try not to give her eggs everyday as they are high in cholesterol so be careful with giving your baby too much of them. 

Every baby is different when it comes to BLW. I feel like if you are going to do it, you NEED to commit to it. Be patient with it. Don't feel disappointed if it isn't for them. Stuff like this seriously takes time. Try different foods and textures. Make sure you ALWAYS offer it to them! We found it helpful to have her sit at the table with us in her highchair while we were eating. So that way she can see us eating and then it is easier to offer it to her. 
Also, make sure when you are at the start of trying BLW, that they are still getting all their normal breastmilk/formula that they were getting before. You do not want them to get malnourished or dehydrated. They still rely on all of that before any solids. We noticed Lillian starting to decrease her formula intake at around 8-9 months old. She was still getting her full intake of formula all before this.

Thank you all so much for reading this if you made it this far! If you have any medical related questions, make sure you contact your child's doctor/paediatrician. 

Happy BLW!

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