'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby skip » 01 Mar 2012, 16:56

RedRum wrote:I think we forget that while blw seems so completely natural and obvious to us, it really, really doesn't to a lot of people - it seems reckless and 'extreme' and daunting and oh-my-god-my-baby-will-choke-on-a-carrot-and-die. I think for the most part that is doe to people not actually understanding it, as well as it being generally ingrained that Babies Start With Purees. They just do.


Yep. This. I think I may have recruited a new weaner the other day, and it struck me how many things I needed to explain to put her mind at rest:

- no, baby won't choke
- why they gag
- the difference between gagging and choking
- milk is fun until they're 1 (or beyond)
- filling up with purees won't make baby sleep through the night
- how to prepare food so it's easy to hold
- the difference between loaded spoons vs spoonfeeding
- the importance of learning to chew before learning to swallow
- the ease of eating out
- the reduced stress/prep/anxiety
- 100 years ago, no one had a blender, or AK branded ice cube trays
- teaching baby to regulate their own appetite is a Very Good Thing
- there will be periods of fasting and feasting
- they will eat spicy/strong flavoured food and love it
- YOU will be so amazed and impressed and proud
- THEY will be so chuffed with themselves
- you can eat your own food while it's hot
- I've probably forgotten 100 other things

The main difference I've come across with weaners and puree-ers is the fear. Either of choking, or that somehow their child will starve. The feed 'em up so they'll sleep idea is bullshit in my experience, too. I think 'control' is a VERY big element in many people's parenting style. When I found Aitch's blog I remember just going "aaaaaaaahhhhhhhh" and finding it so liberating - others might read it and clench up in horror at the idea. What I'm most grateful for <kisses Aitch's boots> is how the baby-led ethos has leaked into every other aspect of our parenting, and we are all, I think, a whole lot happier and healthier (physically and emotionally) for it.
Mama to the marvellous M (July '08) and R-bear (Oct '11)
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby shye » 01 Mar 2012, 17:01

I don't think it's about purée or finger food, it's about approach.

I will admit, with Birdy I have tried EVERYTHING to get the child to eat after all his tummy issues... But whilst I have spoon fed him, he has always been in charge.
Mummy to E (nov 08) and Birdy (dec 10)
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby Psychomummy » 01 Mar 2012, 17:02

Loving the debate here! Or, actually, are we all just saying the same thing? That it's all about letting baby decide how much she/he wants.. I agree that "a bit of both" isn't really BLW, ESPECIALLY if they've started early. The thing I love about BLW is the natural progression - learning what food feels like first, then learning to chew and swallow. It seems insane to me to teach swallowing first then chewing :?:

I never did puree (because I'm lazy and because I don't get the whole "swallowing first" thing) but did use a spoon for yogurt and soup (which Quiglet LOVES - especially Grandad's lumpy minestrone!) but she was always in control - usually taking the spoon off me, but sometimes, on lazy days just opening her little beak and looking expectantly at the spoon-holder! She always just eats what she wants - if she's hungry again, she'll let me know. Quiglet has always been very clear in her signals when she is finished eating - a firmly closed mouth and head turned as far away as possible from the food source, so there has never been any point in coaxing. Sometimes I leave the food out and ignore her for a bit and she'll decide she'll have a bit more, but very rarely and only ever a mouthful or two before GAME OVER.

I think the problem is that people don't realise that vegetable puree is pretty low on nutrients compared to breast-milk or formula so get all antsy about how much sludge the baby has to eat, when really, as long as their still on the white stuff, it's all academic. (Do they worry in the same amounts about their own nutrition? I'm sure we'd live in a much healthier world if they did!)

Even my in-laws (who clearly thought I was a bit weird when I first explained BLW to them) just let her decide for herself - I have converted them - YAY!!! :D
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby peasmummy » 01 Mar 2012, 17:50

It irritated the hell out of me that my postnatal group friends all reacted to my decision to do BLW with 'oh we're going to do a mixture' as if that was some superior form of weaning. What they meant was offer the occasional rice cake (or wotsit in one case!) in addition to spoon feeding purée. On a schedule. Regardless of whether baby was hungry or not, and if they turn their heads and reject it, in 5mins I'll try again and keep going till its gone.

For me it is about approach, not food format. Either you let baby lead, or you don't. So I guess you could do loaded spoons of mush and offer to baby and call it baby led, though why would you once you realise they can really eat real food. But you can't call it baby led if you are not letting baby's appetite, taste and control lead the way all of the time.
Pea - Sept 2009
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Baby Bug - Oct 2012
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby madcatmummy » 01 Mar 2012, 19:03

To me blw means baby feeds themselves and I find it annoying when people say they're doing a mixture of blw and purees because to me (as has already been said here) it is then purees and finger foods, albeit a larger variety of finger foods than may be offered by someone traditionally weaning (which is where I think I went wrong with AD). JT is so determined to self feed he won't let me put anything in his mouth - he puts preloaded spoons in himself, which is fine until you're trying to get calpol in!
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby BLTMama » 01 Mar 2012, 19:53

Jem wrote:
BadgersMommy wrote:I really agree that there's way too much focus on puree vs. solids (like grown people never eat yogurt or soup?), or people who get the idea that BLWing means spoons should be banned from the table, and the whole "baby led" thing gets lost.

I don't know anyone - even other 'hardcore' BLWers like me - who think sloppy/mushy foods like yoghurt etc which obviously require spoons should be banned ... it's just (personally) I gave Izz the yoghurt/soup/porridge etc AND the spoon and let her get on with it.

The mess was fantastic, but she enjoyed herself and that to me is one of the important things about food. It's why even now I don't get wound up if she decides she wants to eat with her fingers - or like last night, when she decided to stick her hands in her baked beans and rub the juice all over her face. :?

Sorry, being unclear -- of course sloppy foods are fine, but I've lost count of the number of newbies I've seen here who say things like "I see people recommending yogurt, but how do they eat it if spoons aren't allowed?" There seems to be a perception (at least among folks who come here; as I said I don't know anybody who's ever heard of BLW in real life) that BLW = no spoons, ever.
♥ Mom to Badger Dec 2009 and Little Tarsier Jun 2013 ♥
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby DIMDongMerrily » 01 Mar 2012, 20:03

BadgersMommy wrote:There seems to be a perception (at least among folks who come here; as I said I don't know anybody who's ever heard of BLW in real life) that BLW = no spoons, ever.


This.

BLW is starting to become more widespread but it seems to be losing something along the way. People are just seeing/hearing the bit about finger foods and ignoring/not understanding the reasons behind BLW. I think it is possible to spoonfeed some things and still follow the 'rules' of BLW, IYSWIM? As long as you're not tricking your baby into opening their mouth or encouraging them to eat more than they want to, or (in extreme cases) actually forcing them to eat when they clearly don't want to, then they're still leading the way aren't they? That said (and this is just me being picky) I don't really think that spoonfeeding purees is really the same as yoghurt or porridge.. yoghurt and porridge are naturally gloopy and require spoons - pureed foods have a more natural state, and I think part of BLW is that babies are given the opportunity to explore foods as they come, learn about the tastes and textures and choose which ones they like. Purees don't really give them the opportunity to do this, do they?
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby alixceri » 01 Mar 2012, 20:13

shye wrote:I don't think it's about purée or finger food, it's about approach.


This.

Muffin was completely 'BLW' in that he absolutely refused to be spoonfed and was also extremely adept at feeding himself from a very young age with excellent fine motor skills. He had great fun flinging yoghurt around on a spoon.

Mini's fine motor skills on the other hand are probably on the poor end of the spectrum and she also dislikes getting her hands messy. It was so clear that she prefered loaded spoons (of sensible food, chopped very small but not pureed) it would have been really mean to have refused to help her and insist she fed herself. Obviously there were no bizarre puree mixes, or aeroplanes flying into mouths, but technically she was certainly spoonfed. I don't really mind whether it counts as BLW or not, as I do believe it was right for her and was definitely 'led' by her.

(Interestingly Muffin is now extremely fussy whereas Mini is much more adventurous, so I don't buy that BLW is the answer to fussiness!)
The Muffin was born on 05/12/07
The Mini Muffin was born on 03/07/2010
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby madcatmummy » 01 Mar 2012, 20:17

alixceri wrote:I don't buy that BLW is the answer to fussiness!



Shame, I was hoping it was!! We will see how JTs fussiness or otherwise pans out in the future, because just now he's a dustbin! AD has her moments but will often request the same foods for lunch every day for weeks on end!
mum to AD (03/09) and JT (08/11) and 2 mad cats!
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby Louisianablue2000 » 01 Mar 2012, 20:26

I get really annoyed by the 'we do both' comments. I think it smacks of jumping on the bandwagon and inevitably means offering some carbohydrate based finger food alongside their purees.

On the other hand my SIL who started weaning all her LOs at 4 months with purees, has always been very baby led and has them feeding themselves real food as soon as they can. If only she missed out the first few weeks of puree feeding she'd be a BLWer. So, she does the right thing but calls it 'weaning'.

Oh, and there is no answer to fussiness, my Mum had two children that ate everything followed by one that ate five foods. One of my RL friends had two (a girl and boy) that were fussy. When pregnant with her third everyone asked what she wanted and she said 'I want a child that eats' and luckily she got one!
See DD1's first few meals here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/louisianab ... 629434614/
See DD2's weaning video here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/louisianab ... 826217940/

DD1 Dec 07, DD2 June 09, DS Sept 12
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby ToothFairy » 01 Mar 2012, 20:33

I'm another one who thinks a mix of both is just traditional weaning. I think most people think that BLW just means giving finger foods, without getting the whole letting baby choose what/how much to eat.

I think it's so deeply ingrained that babies need purees, that they need to be eating x amount y times a day that people just can't get past it :( BLW is so much easier (Martha was weaned traditionally, from 4 months). I don't think it's an answer to fussiness. My little ones are both very fussy, but Martha used to be too. She finally grew out of her fussiness at about 12, and now eats all her food and everything very one else has left!
Mummy to M - September 1998, D - October 2007, and E - May 2010. All BF, cloth nappies, and carried in the same sling, not sure BLW existed in the 90s though!
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby RedRum » 01 Mar 2012, 21:07

I like how we're all nicey nicey when people ask if they can mix, and all "You should do whatever feels right" and yet secretly we're all hard line purists who don't actually believe it counts at all :D ;)
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby Aitch » 01 Mar 2012, 21:14

lol, that's honestly not true at all of me. but then i think you are all fooling yourselves that traditional weaning is a mix of finger and puree. it should have been, but i don't think it was. i think BLW in whatever form or however hard core is a force for good in that respect.

but... having said that, i do think that if people really ARE doing a mix, then they will soon see that there's no need for the purees. so that's why it fazes me not.
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby MissKitty » 01 Mar 2012, 22:17

Blimey - how many pages?! :)

I'm not certain what 'a mix' is. As Aitch said, it soon becomes apparent that purees aren't needed. So, if you are 'mixing' approaches this will show up rather soon. Babies can feed themselves just fine, when they want to eat. So why do you need 'a mix' at all?

I wonder, then, if 'a mix' might be seen as 'a compromise' and may be a way of aligning with both 'sides'? Is 'a mix' a middle ground? Possibly there's a hope that bullets usually aimed at BLW can be ducked because there's something traditional/widely recognised in there too. Just a wondering is all - I don't intend to be inflammatory in any way.

Us? He chooses what he eats from the (wide) range offered at the meal, and how much he wants to eat of it. He plays with food, he eats food, he tests the gravity of some food (IYKWIM!) - all as he wants. He eats with his fingers. He has the flexibility to eat with his toes, if he could work out how to get them out from under the high chair! He actively takes a loaded spoon in reach of his hands. He either eats off it or plays with it - his choice. Sometimes, if he is being lazy, he opens his mouth and leans forward over the spoon! He even licks foodstuff off a passing/nearby hand during a meal if it looks like something he wants to eat (baby wipes do clean my hand better though...). He likes chunks, and BIG chunks, and he likes textured runny stuff (like porridge). He likes soup - often 'a puree'. He likes veg and fruit as sauce or 'dessert' - essentially 'puree'. But he decides whether he wants whatever it is he eats - including if that's in 'a puree' form. We don't need to 'mix' anything - baby eats food in many forms, because food comes in many forms. Simple. It's his choice and he's in control. That's what matters to me.

And we have a happy, healthy baby with an adventurous nature and (usually) a very big smile! :)
Mommy to a June 2011 LO
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Re: 'I will be doing a mix of BLW and puree'. Discuss.

Postby Aitch » 02 Mar 2012, 01:19

i totally agree with you there, i think saying you're going to do a mix often indicates that you just don't want to follow one particular way (and who can blame people for that?) but when it becomes apparent that they can feed themselves then surely one can put away the whizzer and relax?
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