Ava's favorites so far:
- Pear (cooked with a tiny dash of cinnamon), I ran it through the food mill and thinned it with a bit of the cooking water. Daycare said she squealed and opened her mouth really wide. She ate much more than we expected!
- Banana (mashed and thinned out with breastmilk). Daycare told me that they warmed it up slightly and she ate the entire bowl yesterday! What a big eater. She loved the bananas. It's so convenient and nutritious.
- Grapes - Aaron bites off half of the grape when we're eating dinner and squeezes the juice in Ava's mouth and she LOVES it! Aaron holds the grape for her and she sometimes bites a bit of pulp, but mostly takes the juice. She moves her arms around and squeals. It's very cute!
Great Resources for Natural Baby Food:
- Feeding the Whole Family by Cynthia Lair - this book gives recipes for the whole family cooking with whole foods and how to cook for small babies. Cynthia Lair is a contributor to Mother Magazine. I've made several recipes from this book already, but the concepts in the book really have given me great information. A mom who read my blog post recommended to me and I'm glad I bought it.
- First Meals by Annabell Karmel - takes you from food introduction to cooking for small children. It has age-appropriate chapters and the pictures are awesome. She shows you how to prepare food for picky eaters by making it look interesting. I like her hints and info for mixing foods for baby.
Right now, I'm bringing a small bowl to daycare with food for Ava to have a lunch with the other babies. She's eating with everyone at the same time, which probably gets her into the motions. And it's nice because right now, all she needs through the introduction phase is experimentation and my daycare loves trying new foods with her. It's less hassle for me at home and it helps us focus on just nursing. I've heard to do that from a breastfeeding mom's website, but I can't remember where.
I decided against starting Ava on rice cereal. I gave it to her once and it gave her horrible gas for 2-days. I find it interesting with all these other foods we've given her, there are no side effects like that bloody rice cereal! I did notice that after eating the banana and pears, her poop has been a bit heavier, but not bad or foul smelling. We've discussed rice cereal in my La Leche League meetings and I totally agree that it is meant to complement formula fed babies and not necessary like many people say it is. Check out this page on Kellymom about food introduction for more info...