Baby Led Weaning (BLW)

I am slowly beginning to learn that with a baby you just start to nail one thing and then the next thing comes along to throw you off kilter. In this instance it’s Baby Led Weaning.

Myself and Thom did a lot of research and we both liked the sound of BLW opposed to purée foods.

I didn’t really get it at first, but after speaking to various friends, reading forums and reading this amazing book on BLW, we knew straight away it was for us and Baby A. Plus Adeline has only just started taking  an interest in food in the past few weeks so I didn’t see the point in forcing purée on her at 4 months when she’s been quite happy with the breast.

They change so quickly, in just a week she has gone from ignoring food to grabbing my toasted teacake clean out of my hand mid bite! 

What do I do?

Anyone else ever felt overwhelmed? There’s so much information out there and it’s ultimately up to you to make the right decision for your baby. It’s a lot of pressure! It is exciting though and I have been really looking forward to starting it. I mean I don’t have a clue what I’m doing. As I briefly mentioned above, you just nail one thing ( breastfeeding in my case) and now it’s a whole new skill to discover and master. I wonder what’s after that… (don’t tell me) I enjoy the element of surprise…wink! 

Time to prep!

I love shopping (who doesn’t) and I love buying new and exciting things for Adeline, from toys, a new bath, clothes, accessories – you name it! So obviously now Adeline will be joining in with meal times, it’s time to kit her out appropriately. Yes I know she won’t be needing it all straight away but this is me. It’s now or..NOW! So one Saturday myself Adeline and Thom went to Mothercare to look at high chairs. We ended up ordering online after extensive research and testing them out in store.

Seeing her sat there in the shop in her high chair was so cute. It’s crazy to think she’s at this stage already, it only seemed a minute ago that I was in hospital pushing her out and now she’s swinging her little legs and smiling at me in a high chair. See picture below. 

So we have the high chair- tick! Now I need the accessories to go with it.

I’d spotted these amazing bamboo bowls and plate sets that I’ve been dying to get ever since I saw them. So Amazon prime order was done- tick! Then it was over to Asda to buy these organic Ella kitchen finger foods just to get started and see how she responded. I also bought veg that I peeled, chopped and cooked and later that evening I ordered a baby led weaning receipe book. I also bought lots of bibs as I know BLW is messy business so it was a full bib suit that we required.

I then made a list of meals, finger food ideas and then dinners that I could make for myself and Thom that I knew Adeline could also try. 

Breakfast time

So far Adeline only seems interested in brekkie.. she loves it! Why wouldn’t she, it is also my favourite meal of the day.

I have prepared Weetabix for her,  in my BLW recipe book it gives you loads of advice and tips to make the food easy for your baby to handle and get to grips with their pincers. So I pour the milk on the Weetabix and it turns into a solid mush for her to dig her claws into (I describe it like that because that’s exactly what she does). See picture below!

I have also made jumbo porridge oats prepared in a pan with mushed banana in. Her favourite so far! Scrambled egg & toast (she loves toast!) oh and a boiled egg as well.

Now when you read about BLW they explain about choking vs gagging. It’s scary the first time it happens. Myself and Thom found ourselfs YouTubing babies gagging from BLW. I think it’s probably why a lot of people are sceptical or scared of BLW, but they are just learning and they do get used to it. I’ve had various comments from people about BLW, even my own family! I do wish some people would just keep their opinions to themselves sometimes, it really annoys me, especially when it comes across judgemental. Do you know what I’d like to say to those people.. ‘ Keep your views to yourself, back off, keep your nose out and concentrate on your own kids’- thank youuuuu! 

What I’ve learnt about BLW.

If you don’t know much about BLW this is kind of what I’ve learnt so far! 

• Babies are naturally inquisitive – they are programmed to experiment, explore and copy. It’s how they learn. Self-feeding encourages hand-eye coordination and regularly handling foods improves their dexterity – all important skills for their future. Adeline has only been doing it a few weeks and already her hand and eye co-ordination has improved. And her pincer action. Such a clever babe!

• Some research has found that babies who are offered a limited variety of foods could develop fussiness, whereas babies that are given the opportunity to explore a wide range of foods for themselves tend to accept new foods more willingly.

  • For babies, play is about learning, and they can learn a lot from handling food; from finding out how to hold something without dropping it, to getting to grips with different shapes, sizes, weights, tastes and textures. Self-feeding involves all of the senses, helping babies to understand the world around them.

• It encourages your baby to feed themselves and gives them the confidence in their own abilities. And the more they discover, the more they realise they are capable of making things happen; a great boost for their self-esteem.

• When babies are allowed to decide which foods to eat or leave, they may be more willing to try new foods as they know they won’t have to eat if they don’t like it.

As I rave on about BLW this does not mean that I am against purée food. It’s all about choices with everyone, much like breast feeding vs formula. No judgement here! I am all for what works best for you. 

I’m feeling confident and excited about BLW. I’m trying to not be overwhelmed with it, its a slow process (2-3 months) but I think the end results will be worth it.

Adeline seems to love all the food that I present her with. She even knows what’s about to happen when she goes into her chair. Her little legs start kicking as she awaits the next new flavour that’s presented to her. It’s a scary game when you’re dealing with something so new but hey, that’s parenting! Every stage is a challenge, nobody tells you that. Nobody knows what they are doing first time round and that’s ok!

I am loving it though, tonight I have already prepped lunch for tomorrow and made carrot and parsnip soup. It’s all very exciting and new.

Go ahead and follow me on Instagram (lottielot13) I am always putting pictures up and videos of Adeline trying new foods.

I find her face a picture when she tries new textures and flavours. 

Oh and also Bonnie (our dog), also loves BLW as the majority of it ends up on the floor.

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