There are many decisions that we make as parents. We have to decide how many sweets we keep in the house, how much TV time our kids get, and we have to decide if we will be following the CDC’s vaccine schedule or use an alternative schedule.
While the majority of the public does not stop to consider their options in vaccines but follow the doctors schedule, some of us choose to question how much and how often we are willing to give our children vaccinations.
Neither route is wrong.
There are people, of course, on both sides of the argument who will vehemently argue that the other party is wrong. Either wrong for questioning the safety or practice of vaccines or wrong that the parent doesn’t do more of their own research on vaccines, it is important to state that neither option is right or wrong. It is only what is right for YOUR family and the only thing wrong is assuming your family’s method is best for every family.
Vaccinations is a touchy subject. People feel very strongly on it one way or another. It can be hard to have cool, mellow discussions on vaccines with others, especially when one is searching for more information and looking to their peers to see what they chose to do.
Families choosing to research vaccines and find studies are often left disappointed with the amount of (or lack of) well done studies that exist.
In the end the choice to vaccinate or not vaccinate does exist and is the parents to make, despite how those around feel about it.
First, All states in the US have vaccine exemptions for school children who are not vaccinated.
-All states have the standard medical exemption, which is only accessible to a child with an established, medically proven, allergy to vaccine ingredients that has been documented by the pediatrician (or other medical facility like a hospital) and the doctor can show that information to the school system.
-Most states have the option of a religious exemption. By religious, it means that vaccinating conflicts with your families personal (or religious) beliefs.
-Some states have the option of a philosophical exemption- where the reason for not vaccinating can be further removed from the “religious” aspect and more just because the parent isn’t comfortable with it or has a personal reason for not agreeing with vaccines.
It’s important to look up your specific states laws on how to register an unvaccinated (or not fully vaccinated, if doing an alternative schedule) child into school for any families planning on public school.
When thinking about doing an alternative vaccine schedule, there are multiple ways to approach the subject.
-One can choose to Fully vaccinate but administer the vaccines more spread out. Many parents are concerned about how many vaccines their child is given at one time and how that can overwhelm their tiny bodies. They instead make arrangements with their pediatrician where they only get one vaccine at an appointment and make more frequent appointments to get all the vaccines administered in the “correct” time frame still. This method is also great for those who are also watching their child for potential allergies and want to know exactly what vaccine their child is reacting to.
– A Parent may also choose to selectively vaccinate depending on issues like ingredients in the vaccine or the risk of the vaccine vs the risk of the illness it is for. For example, One parent may decide to not use any vaccines that include aborted fetal cells because of their personal discomfort or religious stance on the ingredient. Or a parent may decide to skip vaccines like rotavirus vaccine or the chickenpox vaccine because they feel the vaccine itself carries more potential problems than the illness’s it’s suppose to prevent or that it’s protection rates are not high enough to be worth exposing the child to the ingredients it contains.
– Parents may also choose to decline all vaccines, which is what we refer to as “unvaccinated”. There are just as many reasons for families to choose this option as there are families who choose it. Sometimes it’s because of ingredients in the vaccines, sometimes fear of vaccine reactions, and sometimes it’s purely because they feel a healthy natural immune system is more effective than a vaccine induced immune system.
Rarely, if ever, do families choose not to vaccinate because of autism fears. Despite how many articles and “professionals” claim that autism is the (poor) reason for not vaccinating, most families who choose not to vaccinate have reasons that have nothing to do with the risks (whether real or not) of autism.
Blaming “trends” and “lack of education”
I hear a lot of people accusing unvaccinating parents of just being sheep and blindly following other ignorant people. This is an offensive assumption and is not winning over anyone to the “vaccine team”. While there may be a small percentage of parents who follow others in not vaccinating without properly educating themselves on vaccines, illnesses, risks, benefits, studies- ect, the majority of families who choose not to vaccinate or follow an alternative vaccine schedule do not make that decision lightly or info-less. Actually, the majority have passionately and maybe borderline obsessively studied and researched before coming to a final decisions.
We know how to identify illness. We know that a dry cough, runny nose, sore throat, muscle aches, red eyes..ect could mean measles. We also know that 95% of children with polio show no symptoms and in the 4-8% of children who are symptomatic, it shows itself as a mild flu and about .1% of those cases can be the more severe paralytic form of polio. We can also tell you about 60,000 cases of polio that occurred in 1952 and that about 3,000 children died that year from it. We are not blindly following trends or uneducated. This decision weighed on us and we chose to take the path that best fit our family’s beliefs and lifestyle and felt right for us. Before assuming any nonvaccinating family chose to avoid vaccines for shallow reasons or because of blind, uneducated fear- try talking to them and opening up a conversation with them in a nonjudgmental way. Or, just accept that whatever their reasons are that it was still their legal right to make them- because in the end- whether your reasons are good or poor or based on education or following the crowd – vaccinate or not vaccinate- the decision is still yours to make, as the parent of your child.
– Nonvaccinating families have always existed. Not vaccinating is no new trend. What has become more widespread is knowing that the family next door, or your cousin or that child in your kids class is not vaccinated, due to social media and people sharing more private information in a more public way. The unvaccinated families have always been here, though. We are not a new trend. We are now just more public, thanks to twitter and facebook and other forms of media sharing.
I respect your decision, whatever it is. It is not an easy one to make and the results can be unpredictable no matter what path you choose. You can be the vaccinating parent whose child ends up with a permanent seizure disorder from the HPV vaccine or the unvaccinating parent whose child gets Pertussis (whooping cough). Or you more than likely will be the parent who chose whichever path felt right for their family and it all worked out fine and your family grew healthy and happily. Either way, it’s a major decision to make and one we should never assume others took lightly.
One thing most parents have to deal with at one time or another is a baby with a cold. A cold is very probable if they are around older kids, attend any kind of child care (even if it is just at the gym or church) but even the stay-at-home babies without much time with other germy kids occasional catch colds. Even for an experienced mom it can be difficult to remember everything to do and what we CAN do for these little booger babies but for a first time mom it can be down right over whelming. So here are some “what to expects” and what you can do to help-
- Breastfeeding Can Become Difficult
This is due to having a stuffed nose. Ever try to drink down a big old gulp of water while your nose is completely stuffed? Or spend too much time swimming under water and have to come up gasping for air? That’s what eating is like now for your nursling. Every second on the breast is a moment of struggling for breath. Moms will notice baby to unlatch every few seconds. This can make nursing really frustrating for mom and baby. Not only is baby having a hard time eating and getting his or her belly full of milk, mom may start feeling a bit on the engorged side. While non of this is fun, it is normal and as soon as baby can breathe a bit easier, he or she should nurse normally again and make up for being a light nurser during that period of time.
– Try nursing baby in a more upright position. Being upright helps open the airways and makes breathing through the nose easier.
– Hand express or use a pump to ease engorgement and keep breast stimulated so these is no dip in supply from the slow nursing days.
– Stay patient and relaxed. Speak comfortingly to your baby. It can be stressful for them to struggle to nurse too.
- Sleeping Becomes Difficult
Again, laying down flat stuffs baby’s nose right up. Frequent night waking can be an understatement of what night time is like with a sick baby. There may also be an increased amount of coughing occuring during the night, as a result of post nasal drip. A sleep deprived mommy and baby is another one of those obnoxious normals when sickness is brewing
– If baby is sleeping in their ow bassinet or crib, the mattress can be propped in an incline to keep baby from lying completely flat.
– If cosleeping, mom will probably find herself needing to prop baby up while craddling him or her in her arm. This can be more comfortable if mom props several pillows up behind herself so she is sitting up a bit herself.
– Another sleep option is a recliner for mom to sit in and hold baby on her chest.
– In whatever room baby is sleeping in- there should be a cool mist humidifier running to keep the air moist, and help loosen mucous in baby’s airways. A few drops of peppermint oil can be helpful too.
– Some parents claim that Vicks vapo rub on baby’s feet with socks over also helps baby sleep and helps breathing.
***cosleeping disclaimer- While I fully support (and practice) cosleeping myself, be safe while cosleeping! Do not place baby on the edge of a bed, chair or otherwise. If parent is too tired to remain self aware of baby while resting together, find another sleeping arrangement, please.
- There Will Be Boogers
Oh the boogers! They will probably begin with just a little clear drip and then can turn yellow or green. Hopefully, they stay clear, though! They will run them, sneeze them, blow nose bubbles with them, get them on you shirt and if it’s really glamorous, you’ll even get some on your breast while nursing. The joys of motherhood.
– Keep the boogers coming out! Out may not be pretty but it’s a ton better than not running out for their health.
– Use breastmilk as saline (Or use a baby Saline). IT can be sprayed right up the nose from the breast (messy but can work) or use some expressed milk and a dropper to get the milk right up there. This is great because not only will it help loosen mucous, breastmilk is full of antibodies that fight illness and infections.
– Suction the nose! While most people are more familiar with the bulbs for nose suctioning, these do not really work amazing and they breed germs. Getting a Nosefrida is the best for clearing out baby mucous! While it can look a bit disturbing, there is a filter in it and nothing actually goes to the parents mouth!
– Keep the humidifier running during day time house too to keep moisture in the air and prevent mucous from drying and crusting and clogging up baby
It is always a little alarming when our little one starts running hot but it typically is not something to worry about. Fever is the bodies way of killing the germs in it. If baby runs a fever for a day or two of a cold, this is just baby dealing with illness properly and efficiently. If fever gets high, baby gets lethargic, or fever doesnt go away after a day or so (or if you have any feeling that baby needs to be checked on) call your doctor
– For low grade fevers that do not seem to be bothering baby- it’s good to let it run its course, but if fever is bothersome- rotating between tylenol and motrin can be helpful (be careful with dosage. If baby has never had it or unsure of how much, get a hold of doctor first)
- Plan For Poop
I’m sure parents deal with enough poop from their babies but now it may become a lot more mucousy. After a few days of lots of mucous, it’s normal to start noticing very mucousy stools. They may be greener, or more yellow than normal and runnier, and way more frequent than their normal amount of pooping. Also, the frequent bowel movements can cause some diaper rash as well.
– Check the diaper often! Even if there is no smell or full feeling diaper, the mucous can change the bowel movements so that it does not give off it’s normal clues that a diaper change is needed.
– Keep all diaper supplies on hand a plenty of them. Diapers, wipes, outfit changes and lotion (or Coconut oil) for any rash that occurs
- Follow Your Gut
As silly as it sometimes feels to bring a baby to the doctor for a cold (I mean, there is not much that can be done for colds but wait them out) If your gut feels there is something wrong or the baby should be checked out, then bring them to be checked out. Peace of mind is worth the copay. If you have a hunch that your baby should be checked on, have them checked on!
**Medical Disclosure** I am not a doctor, nurse, or any kind of health professional. These tips are purely experience based & advice I have received in the past from my own pediatrician and friends- from their personal experiences****
Grace is doing awesome with food. She loves to eat and gets pretty mad if any of us eat and are not prepared to feed her as well. She also loves having her seat pulled up at the table with the entire family and eating with us at meal time. She is all smiles during that time. We are on baby number 3 with no purees and we still love this form of food introduction and find it a quick and easy way to get her fed. Plus, she just seems so happy for every meal. For more information on Baby Led Weaning (skipping pureed foods)- Click Here
I feel it’s time to explain why we have converted to a flexitarian diet. For anyone who has not heard of flexitarianism, that means we eat a mostly vegetarian diet (in our case, a mostly vegan diet, really) but we are flexible about it. We are not anti ever having meat but only have it on those occasions where we eat at someone elses home or go out to eat and there are no vegetarian/vegan friendly options. We do not beat ourselves up over having meat now and then because the occasional meat product is built into our defined dietary lifestyle. If you go to our home, though, we are vegetarians 99.9% of the time here.
So why? First, I have seen myself moving in this direction for years but just was not willing to cross the line and accept it. We are very concerned about the hormones in food. Yes, I know Tyson claims that their chickens are hormone free. They’re lying. They do not administer it directly to the chicken so they are able to say that but it is in the chickens food. Plus, if you have ever seen how these chicken are raised, you would know they aren’t healthy animals. Free range my booty. They aren’t smashed into individual cages, they are free to roam a shelter that they are crammed into so tightly together that it’s rare for one to make it to the entrance of the little outdoor area they are given. Many of these chickens are so overweight they cannot even walk. We eat morbidly obese chickens and then wonder why we have an issue with obesity. Trying to buy all truly organic, healthy chicken is no easy challenge where I live. The one corner that they keep the organic meat in may or may not have any and if they do it costs an arm, a leg and your first born child to eat it more than a few times per month. It just was not practical to be an every day meat eater who avoided growth hormones in the meats.
I went on to read all about Dr. Joel Fuhrman and his “nutritarian” lifestyle (he’s pretty much a vegan). He is pretty cool and has awesome information. I learned a lot about nutrition from him and just how much protein we get from sources not meat. I learned about making the majority of our diets out of nutritionally dense foods. In his book “Live to Eat” he acts like he’s all chill. He puts out the challenge, specifically for weight loss, that you only have to go 6 weeks without meat. He knows a 6 week commitment is a lot easier for people than a lifetime commitment. He also knows that the person following his plan will get pretty used to eating meatless during that 6 weeks. It’s amazing how little you miss meat once you break that barrier of going weeks without it! In his book he eases you in but when you get deeper into his lifestyle, the man is not nearly as chillaxed about foods. He believes just one unhealthy meal could kill you (and he is probably right) and he is not a fan of ever veering from this strict diet. While I love him and his teachings, I’m a bit too human to commit to them 100% of the time. He is great for getting started, though. He did a fantastic job giving me the tools I needed to want to eat healthy and feed my family healthy. I also really love his book on getting kids to eat healthy too. He gives fantastic tips and it has helped me work with my ultra picky eater so much.
Then I watched the documentary Forks Over Knives. This was a total mind blow for me. They go into detail on cancer study’s with meat and the results were insane. Whether eating organic or non organic meat, meat always lead to growth in cancer cells in the body and the removal of meat from a diet REVERSED the effects and shrunk the cancer cells. This study was repeated and performed several times amongst different groups (and mice) and it was always the same. More meat meant more cancer. That wasn’t all they had but the only way to fully grasp the awesome revelation of this documentary is to watch it. It’s on Netflix and free on Amazon’s instant demand thing if you have amazon prime (not sure for those without prime memberships but i’m guessing it’s still cheap). It’s worth the watch!
After all of this, we decided it was best to cut it. It was hard at first. We had to relearn how to eat and even change our expectations of what a meal looks like. We started with committing to “meatless Mondays” just to get a grasp on the entire meatless concept. It quickly grew into doing most our week meatless to most of the month meatless to us going months without having meat in the home. We get plenty of protein through broccoli (my kids favorite), peas, kale, spinach, beans, lentils, occasionally some tofu- though I’m not big on “replacement meats” because we expect them to be like meat too much. You have to learn to eat foods for what they are and not expect a bean burger to taste like a meat burger. My kids love to drink Silk almond milk, which is B12 fortified, as well as full of calcium and protein and tons of other vitamins. While we do a lot of dairy replacements instead of having cows milk products- my kids still get organic yogurt and cheeses and the very occasional pack of organic chicken nuggets or organic bacon to go with a breakfast.
And there is no guilt about having meat when we do. As a flexitarian its built into my acceptable diet to have meat sometimes. I desire to be healthy and raise kids to love healthy eating but we also only live once. So that is our so far story. We’ve been on this road for about 8 months now and still really happy with it. I rarely crave a meat product and when I do.. I eat it. It usually leaves me feeling like it wasn’t worth it and its a good while before I crave it again.
Welcome to the January 2013 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Recovering from the Holidays This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama. This month our participants have written about how their families get back to normal after the holidays are over.
Our Holiday Season has come to a close but some of the bad habits that came with it have not. After eating to our hearts delight and keeping way more candy, chocolates, and all around carb and sugar filled foods in the house, my family has that sweet tooth habit to kick. Us adults know this and prepare for it. We make New Years resolutions (and might even still be sticking to them!) but our kids need a new start just as much. All my girls need are 1-2 days of heightened amounts of junk to forget that we are a healthy family. The good food strikes begin and the expectations for sweets are high. So here are some ways to help your littles kick their sweet toothers.
1- Get it out of Reach
Hide it, put it in a closet, or even just throw it away! The junk needs to be away from their reach and their vision. They can’t know where it is or see you snacking on it either. The goal is to get it out of sight, out of mind. If you throw it away, though, don’t do it in their view or in a way that will torment them. Remember, the goal is just to get the temptation out of the house, not to punish our children.
2- Stock up on Healthy Snacks
Fill your house with apples, bananas, grapes, berries, carrots, celery, peanut butter (or almond butter or whatever you use), raisins, unsalted nuts, sunflower seeds… hey, you can even keep some goldfish in the house (at least there are no dyes in them) as an “after some fruits and veggies” snack! You want to give them options. Yes, the junk is gone but their choices are not. They still have a wide range of great options from sweet to salty for every mood. They may decline their options a few times but just hold out and eventually, they will find one of their options favorable.
3- Do Not cave in
Your children will not starve themselves. I know what it is like to start doing the math of how much they weigh, vs how tall they are, vs how much they run in the day and KNOW there is no way they have much spare to live off of. Still, they won’t starve themselves. The starving kids in those Africa commercials never turn their noses up at that muck stew they are being served. That is because they are hungry! Your child wont get anywhere near as hungry as one of those kids before deciding to settle for a healthy option. If they are able to hold out and say they won’t eat any of those options, guess what? They are not that hungry.
4- Don’t Stress about it
Do you know what happens when you freak out or get anxious about your child eating healthy foods? They connect healthy foods to anxiety mentally. If you are yelling or getting upset over them eating (or not eating) their healthy foods, then they are probably getting stressed about those healthy foods too. Just seeing them on their plate could likely start giving them an uneasy feeling in the pit of their stomachs. Stay relaxed! If they eat, fantastic! If they don’t, try to stay calm and mellow and rational. After all, we are trying to raise children who grow to be adults that love eating and living healthy. If salads and veggies give them anxiety as adults and reminds them of mommy stomping around her kitchen in a huff, they probably won’t want much to do with those healthy foods even as adults.
So good luck and have fun. Maybe let your child pick out their own healthy option from the grocery store to get them pumped about the snack they picked out themselves. Eat healthy too and talk up how much you love your healthy foods. Have fun and find delight in filling your home back up with vibrant, delicious foods.
Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:
(This list will be live and updated by afternoon January 14 with all the carnival links.)
- Pinterest Inspiration for Easier Winter Holidays Shannon, writing at Natural Parents Network, shares inspiration for having more relaxed winter holidays from their Handmade Holidays Pinterest board.
- Seven Recipes for Beans – Post Holiday Cleaning — Destany at They Are All of Me shares her favorite bean recipes that she hopes will help her body recover from overindulging her sweet tooth during the holidays.
- The Recovery in the Change — Laura at Pug in the Kitchen made changes in her life and attitude throughout 2012 and was pleasantly surprised at how those changes impacted her holiday recovery!
- Could this question change your life for ever? — To get your new year off on the right footing, Mrs Green of Little Green Blog is challenging us all to love ourselves with commitment and discipline. She asks you to focus on a simple question which might just bring you back in balance…
- Holiday Recovery — Meegs at A New Day talks about how the holidays can be overwhelming for a toddler, and how she’s helping her 3 year old recover.
- 5 Ways to Detox After the Holidays — Brittany at The Pistachio Project gives a few ways to help you detox and get back on track after the holiday season has passed.
- 3 Simple Ways to Establishing Rhythm After the Holidays or Any Time — Sheila at A Living Family shares 3 simple ways to reestablish a rhythm of connection and calm in your family after holidays, visitors, travel or any time.
- Gemstones For Holiday Hangoverss — Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama delves into the power of gemstones as an often overlooked means of dealing with the holiday letdown.
- Getting back to Healthy — Bess at A Warrior Mom talks about the struggle of getting young ones back to eating healthy after several days to weeks of getting more candy and sweets than normal for the holidays and gives some suggestions on how to get them back to eating healthy in the new year.
- Post Christmas Juice Feast — Sam at Love Parenting explains why she has created a new tradition of juice feasting, and how she includes her toddler when detoxing.
- The Java Monkey On My Back — Christy at Eco Journey in the Burbs realizes it is time to kick her cup of Joe habit as a first step toward detoxing.
- Minimalist Holidays — Jorje of Momma Jorje doesn’t find much need for recovery after her minimalist version of the holidays.
- Do something for you — Lauren at Hobo Mama urges you to find a silly and indulgent reward of me-time — and she has hers.
- do we recover? — Kenna at Million Tiny Things wonders what recovery really means in the context of the tragedies of this past holiday season.
- 37 Easy Ways to Save Money — Shannon at GrowingSlower is sharing these money-saving tips to help get your budget back on track after the holidays.
- A Two Year Old’s Resolutions — That Mama Gretchen is putting the holidays behind her with a spin on traditional resolutions — New Year’s goals for her two-year-old! Sound crazy? Read on for an explanation!
- How to Find Balance after the Holidays — Deb Chitwood at Living Montessori Now tells her favorite ways to start a new year with hope and calmness.
- Fresh Awakening — For Luschka at Diary of a First Child, the new year has coincided with a return to restful nights. With sleep, she’s found new directions in life, but while she can’t make too many changes to her life right now, she’s inspired and excited about the future.
- Learning to slow down after a busy Festive Season — Stoneageparent describes the joys and lows of this year’s festive season, as well as her New Year’s resolutions.
- Detoxing’ Your Toddler After the Holidays — Does your family suffer side effects from the holidays? Join Christine from African Babies Don’t Cry to learn how she detoxed herself and her toddler off the treats and festivities of the season.
- Scheduling is OK! — Jaye Anne at Wide Awake, Half Asleep explores the possibilities of the — SCHEDULE!!
- Holiday-Free but not Stress-Free — Mercedes at Project Procrastinot takes it easy after moving with her husband and new babies to Scotland.
- A Vacation from the World — Mandy at Living Peacefully with Children retreats with her family at the end of every year in order to recuperate and enjoy one another.
- On the Road to Recovery — Dionna at Code Name: Mama isn’t just recovering from the holidays, she’s recovering from a lifestyle.
- We Never Left the Grind — Erika Gebhardt compares a typical day pre-holidays and post-holidays.
- Remembering and Recovering from the Holidays (One day at a time) — Emily at S.A.H.M i AM is recovering from holidays slowly–taking one day at a time–while trying to remember all the sweet moments that passed too quickly.
- 5 a Day — To get back on track Jennifer at True Confessions of a Real Mommy needed a simple system to help her family learn new values.
- Holiday Detox & Healing: Bieler Broth — Megan at The Boho Mama shares her secret for a gentle, whole-foods-based post-holiday detox: Bieler Broth!
- I’m Mama Not Supermom — After a year filled with changes Angela at EarthMamas World has to remind herself that she does not have to be supermom while recovering from the holiday chaos.
For the third time in my life I am going through that fun stage of introducing solids. By fun, I really mean fun! Solids is a no stress issue in my home. There is no pressure for Grace to eat a jar of pureed foods that stays fresh on a shelf for 6 months. We are a Baby Led Weaning (you will see my refer to it as BLW) family and love it.
When my oldest was a baby I knew the AAP’s and WHO’s recommendation’s for starting solids. I waited until my daughter was 6+ months old, sitting up on her own, lost her tongue reflex and desired to eat. Once she hit those milestones I excitedly whipped out the jar of mush and put a small spoon full in her mouth. BLAH it all came out. Not only did it all came out… she started throwing up EVERYTHING in her stomach. We tried again a few days later, same results. I talked to her pediatrician at her next Baby Wellness visit who decided she needed to go to food therapy. By this point, though, I had discovered that she was more than happy to much on breads, cucumbers, apples and anything else I gave her. So our adventure began. We decided to try Baby led weaning and skip purees all together. It worked fabulously! She came to like food on her own and on her own terms. We followed the same style of food introduction for Ariel and now for Grace.
Reasons Why BLW is Awesome-
- Your baby eats because they want to eat, not because you decide the clock says it’s time to eat.We have enough of an obesity epidemic in our country without teaching our children that they need to shove down an entire jar of food whether they are hungry right now or not. All that teaches them is to not listen to their bodies and their own hunger cue’s.
- You have more control over what is in their food. There is no guess work over what preservatives are used to keep it fresh or dyes or knowing every single ingredient. Your biggest concern now is just not knowing if that avocado is GMO or not but there’s not too much we can do about that other than by organic and know you are doing the best you possibly can with what we have available to us.
- It’s pretty stinking easy! Dice up that avocado or banana (or steamed and cooled veggie or fruit), put it on their tray, and watch them to make sure they are safe and well.
- If your child happens to love purees, you can still give them some! Make some homemade baby food and follow your child’s cue’s. Let them feed themselves (yes, there will be a mess but that’s part of having a baby. you get messes to clean!) and don’t force them to eat more when they are telling you they don’t want more.
What about Baby Nutrition?
If your child is breastfed, you are in luck! Breast milk meets 100% of your child’s nutritional needs for at least 12 months of their life (and still meets a huge chunk of their needs after 12 months old) so solids is strictly for fun that first year. Yep, that means there is NO reason to force solids upon your baby. They are not at any risk of being malnourished if they don’t jump onto the solids wagon at 6 months on the dot.
If your child is formula fed, rest assure that formula does do a good job at providing your child with nutrients and vitamins. It is slightly more important that your child gets solids in the first year, though, because formula doesn’t have the ability to change and develop and personalize itself to your child’s current needs like breast milk does. BLW is still a great way to go, though, and may even the best way to go! If your child needs more solids in his or her life to supplement nutrition then loading their tray with cheerios and Gerber meat sticks is far from the best way to go. Having nutritionally dense foods available for him/her will get them on a great start for solids. Still, follow your babies signs, though. Over feeding them still isn’t a good habit to get them into. Your child will let you know when they want to eat and do not want to eat. Babies may not speak but they can very effectively tell us when they are unhappy.
What Do you Feed Her?
All kinds of yummies! Though I am all for a quick and easy snack of Earths Best something or other or some kind of organic puff or a dinner roll, these are not meals. Since the first year of life is for fun anyways, I only feed her things that are good for her body. Fruits and Veggies.
Grace has eaten Avocado, Bananas, Sweet Potatoes, Butternut Squash, Apples, Pears, Zucchini, Red Bell Peppers… ect. She isn’t even 8 months old yet so she is still very much in the learning and trying stage right now but she has enjoyed munching on all of these things. I will continue to stick to a fruit and veggie diet for her since it is healthy and matches up with our dietary lifestyle (flexitarians).
For lots of meal ideas and information on BLW Click Here