Dylan’s First Food

Dylan has become very interested in food. As I said in my post about momsicles:

When I’m eating he carefully watches my every motion and is bothered when he can’t have whatever it is I’m having or do whatever it is I’m doing. He wants to put everything else in the world in his mouth, too, so I’m not certain that he knows something different is happening with food, but since I won’t give him any, meals are a source of bafflement and frustration for him.

I’ve been wanting to wait until Dylan was 6 months old before letting him have any food, since that’s the age that the WHO recommends. Dylan won’t be 6 months old for 12 more days, but yesterday Joshua and I decided the time was right. For his first food, we picked banana:

He went from that furrowed brow expression to completely weirded out:

He didn’t cry, but he was quite skeptical of the whole thing. Was it the taste? The mushiness? I don’t know.

I have no intention of buying baby food and certainly none of that rice cereal crap. I’ve got no plans to spoon anything at all into Dylan’s mouth; he’ll feed himself instead.

That makes it harder to find the right foods for him at this point, though. I’ve always recommended banana, avacado, and sweet potato as good early foods, but Dylan will just make a mush out of these things.

Do you have any suggestions? When did you give your kids food? What did they like?

Comments

  1. Lovely photos. I did self-led feeding with my son, too. Makes sense on so many levels. The faces your baby is making are fairly typical of a baby trying his first solids. Ideal foods for gnawing on include bread, pasta, roast vegetables (not too much oil), lightly steamed broccoli, soft fruits, brie, mashed egg. Pretty much anything we were eating provided it could be offered in the shape and size of a hot potato chip (don’t know what Americans call chips? Fries? Only thicker?). And it’s pretty messy for quite a while. You just have to go with that. Enjoy.

    • I know what you mean – the shape of thick cut fries. That way he could hold it and try to eat it at the same time. Thanks for the suggestions!

  2. So cute! Fin’s getting his first food (yam) tonight! I’m really excited. I love the site http://www.babyledweaning.com – lots of info, including food suggestions. I am going to buy a “crinkle cutter” to cut stuff into thick pieces with wavy edges so it’s more grip-able. You could try steamed carrots or raw melon.

  3. We started letting our kids try bites of whatever we were eating as soon as they started showing interest; if I remember right, Libra was about four months old, and Gemini was around five, maybe six. We’d pick up little tiny pieces of pasta, or soft vegetables, and offer it on our fingertips. Once they got the hang of picking stuff up with their hands, we’d just set it out for them on a placemat and let them have at it.

    Libra took to it nearly right away, but Gemini was only halfheartedly interested until he was about nine months old and we discovered baby food that comes in a pouch. I’m still not sure it was the food so much as the fact that it came in a pouch, which he could hold and squeeze and use to feed himself – but whatever it was, he suddenly started eating, a lot, and now at nearly a year-and-a-half he’s at least as accomplished with a fork and spoon as three-year-old Libra (who prefers to eat with his fingers).

  4. Is it being mushy a bad thing? It’s messy, that’s for sure, but solids are mostly for play and learning, right now. He’ll barely get much of anything you give him in his mouth :)

    • I don’t mind the messy, but Dylan gets frustrated with it. He can’t pick it up or get it into his mouth very well. We gave him carrots and green beans last night, and that went better. Neither of them got slippery while he was playing so they weren’t constantly getting away from him.

  5. Interesting discussion. I was the baby-food maker for Astrid and I did the growing, some of the buying (because I wanted organic meat products) and the mixing/mashing/icecube tray routine.

    My daughter is having another in May, so I’ll be growing sweet potatoes again this year, but maybe this time I’ll simply bake some cut pieces and freeze them (or cut pieces, freeze them and then bake them). Avocado could be cut, as well.

    Mashing is part of the process, but I see no reason to deprive the baby of this part.

    I was big on feeding whole wheat pancakes sweetened with applesauce and cut into pieces. Spoon/fork practice needs to come in somewhere so the child can eat yogurt/soup, etc.

    I still have my granddaughter practice “transferring” so that she’ll be able to pour her own stuff when she turns 2 in February.

    I couldn’t help but notice that the WHO recommends baby-led eating as part of baby-led WEANING at 6 months. Do you intend to stop nursing so early?

    • Technically, weaning begins as soon as you provide something other than breastmilk to the child. Based on what I see from other parents with values like mine, I probably won’t stop nursing until well after Dylan is 2. But, he has begun weaning, even though that process will take years.

  6. We started feeding Taran the day he turned six months.He was interested in food as soon as he could grasp stuff he was making runs on our plates at three months. The first couple of foods we fed him were avocado, banana, apple, carrots and peas smushed up a bit. We always left him to feed himself. I was happy he was six months old in the Summertime. I usually fed him outside and would just hose off the porch and him when he was done.

    After a month or two we moved onto brown rice and oatmeal. He would pick up each kernel of rice and pop it in. He loved that. We did eggs younger then recommended and he ate alot of scrambled eggs around 8months to a year. He also ate more of what we we ate after eight months. I remember him eating a good amount of tomato sauce and pasta. Oh and mangos. He would eat as much mango as we would feed him. It was one of his first words and he would bellow for MAYGO MAYGO.

    Then around a year he moved onto rice and beans which were a favorite food. After a year I fed him all sorts of stuff. Pretty much anything we ate he ate. Lamb was and still is a favorite.

    At almost five he is a great eater and other then two or three foods he will eat whatever, he can make himself breakfast and lunch if needed. Probably dinner to. When left to his own devices he almost always make good choices. We are happy with his relation to food.

    One more thing we did was never forced him to eat. We put food down and if he didn’t eat he didn’t eat. If he was super distracted I might try to bring his attention back to his food. I would sometimes ask him to finish his protein, veg or fruit before he got seconds on carbs but 95% of the time he was in charge of what and how much he ate. I am freaked out at how much people make their kids eat. Like each meal is the make or break point for malnutrition. I wonder why MORE people don’t have eating disorders with each meal being a battle ground with your mainsteam children.

  7. I think the first foods for MSC were sweet potatoes and bananas and avocados. But she was way older, as we were discussing when I saw you last. I completely agree with you on the letting him do it himself rather than spooning food to him thing. Yuck. I have always thought that the whole spoon feeding baby food thing was ridiculous. MSC skipped baby food and even most mushy food. I was careful to cut up things and make sure they were bite-sized for her, but other than that, she waited to reach for food until she was old enough to deal with chewing it and feeding it to herself (and I’m thankful for that).

    I’m curious to find what his first favorites are!

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