Now that Elisabeth is nearly five months old, we’re starting to think about when she’ll start eating solid foods and what those will be. Will we do things the most common way today: spoon feeding her pureed foods, eventually transitioning to lumpy foods and then finger foods? Or will we do it what is probably the more traditional way if you go back far enough is now known as baby-led weaning: let her start eating what she wants when she wants when she is ready? At this point we’re not eliminating any possibilities, and I think we still have at least another month before we really need to decide, especially given that guidelines today recommend breast milk only for the first six months.
In any case, this past week, Elisabeth had her first teaser of “grown-up” food. On Tuesday afternoon, we were at a baby play group and pieces of melon and banana were passed around for the mums and babies (most of whom were older than six months). I picked out a piece of melon and held it by Elisabeth’s mouth to see if she would lick it. She did and seemed to like it. I let her lick it one more time before I ate it.
Then on Thursday afternoon we were in Priory Park picnicking with the other mums & babies from our NCT antenatal group and I was eating a rather sour Braeburn apple. I had eaten about half of it when I held it to Elisabeth’s mouth. She clearly enjoyed licking that as well and sucked on it quite a bit before I finished it (after trying to wipe some of the baby drool off of it).
The next day I was eating a rather mushy pear and held that up for Elisabeth to lick. It was soft enough that she could actually suck bits off of it – which she continued to do with gusto until I took it away from her. She wasn’t very happy about that. She wanted to keep eating that pear!
It was really fun seeing her enjoy new foods, and while neither of us are quite ready for Elisabeth to launch more fully into the world of solids, I’m looking forward to introducing her to more new foods – and hopefully watching her delight in them – when the time seems right.