One of the biggest, most important stages with your baby is the weaning stage when they begin to eat food puree. This is a very important stage that can shape how they eat food going forward, and more importantly what they eat. It is very important for both parents to be on board and try their best at this stage, as it will play an important part in the future.
Make Meal Times Fun Times!
The best piece of advice I can give to parents at this stage is to make it as fun as possible for your child. They need to have fun at this stage, so they want to do it again and again, so make sure meal times become fun times. Children associate their emotions with different times so if your child associates fun and happy times with the early stages of feeding, they are likely to be more responsive to new food.
Routine is the Key
When you start the weaning process, try and give your child a routine and stick to it. That means sitting at the table every day, without distraction, and eating together as a family. Gradually your child will associate meal times with being around the table as a family, and become used to that happening. This makes them more familiar and makes them feel comfortable when doing this, taking away any stress or pressure out of the situation.
Be Adventurous with Flavour
When making the first puree’s for your child, after they have had their first few meals you can really experiment with the flavours you give them. Homemade puree’s are easy to make and easy to store in the freezer, allowing you to experiment. Don’t worry about mixing fruit and vegetables in the early stages, my son loved pureed chicken, carrot and apple! When you begin to combine flavours, think of it as an experiment and think of it as fun, don’t worry too much when it comes to the rules that you normally adhere to.
Most important of all when you are at the weaning stage, you must be patient with your child. Don’t worry too much if they are not bothered about their food one day, or if they don’t like a particular flavour. Give them time and they will change their mind. I have known my son dislike something one day, but then empty his dish the next day, of exactly the same food! Children are very fussy at this stage, and it’s not always down to the food. Being unhappy with the atmosphere or being tired will stop them from enjoying their food, regardless of what you cook them.
The Four Golden Rules
– Make meal times fun in the early stages
– Give your child a routine that you can stick to
– Be adventurous when mixing flavours
– Be patient!
Make sure you follow these golden rules and the weaning process will go well. This is an important time in your child’s life, make sure you enjoy it just as much as they do!