What I Needed to Start Baby Weaning – 12 Useful Items 🇬🇧

weaning3

Although it is a complete taboo, I mixed my weaning up between feeding some meals directly as puree to Charlotte and also giving her finger food a la Baby Led Weaning. I tried her on finger food at six months, but it was way too early for her to hold or even try and properly feed herself, so I started out with the usual sweet potato and parsnip purees and added in bits to nibble as she got more confident and was able to sit up properly. Now at ten months she is pretty much onto only finger food and hates being fed! Here are some bits and bobs which have helped with the weaning process:

Big Chair, Little Chair, Baby Chair.
Big Chair, Little Chair, Baby Chair.
  1. Highchair – Personally I have a Stokke Tripp Trapp which used to be her sister’s. I love it because they use it for years, but it is a big investment. My parents have the very simple ikea high chair and from the many forums I am in, this seems to be a hit for many people.It is a simple, plastic high chair with a tray that also comes off. Whatever you choose, bear in mind that the food gets everywhere and so the highchairs with lots of padding and nooks and crannies are gross after a few meals (I speak from experience from first baby).
  2. Bibs– There are some really rubbish bibs which are really only good for wiping up minimal dribble and need washing each time. I have many of them and they were not a great choice. Ideally you want a wipe-down variety and one which covers the baby as much as possible, because even when you feed them they manage to turn their head at the last minute and then rub the food from their face into their hair and clothes!IMG_6408 IMG_6921 I have these wipe down ones, this cheeky monkey from Nuby (which has a lip to catch fallen food but doesn’t cover her too much) and my parents have the all-over bib from Ikea, which is obviously great for saving on mess, but is very big and the arms get in the way. The hard plastic bibs catch lots of food, but can be a bit of a hindrance for baby to move and reach the table or tray.
  3. Blender – I use my wand mixer to puree food especially when they are really little and can’t cope with chunks. I also have a little masher from my Nuk Fresh Food Set which is good for potatoes.
  4. Containers – Whether you are doing Baby Led or traditional weaning, you will need little pots to store your food. My mum saves the little ice-cream pots for snacks, but they are not very reliable to be frozen again as they crack easily. IMG_5816Ideally you want some purpose-made pots like the ones in the Nuk set or from Avent.
  5. Recipes – Although babies are happy to stick to one food kind at a time, they do need to be introduced to a variety of foods. Pinterest has some good ideas and there are lots of recipe-books online. Babycenter has some good tips on cooking for mum and baby at the same time which I really enjoyed. It is also good to find a cookbook which can advise you on what babies should and should not eat which takes out the confusion. Amazon have a wide selection.
  6. Bottles – I breastfed for the first ten months which was good because finger food often ends on the floor as the babies are learning to eat so not much goes in! It is nice to fill them up on demand if you can. Once I stopped breast feeding she got a bottle in the morning and evening. Babies also need to drink when they start on solids and there are bottles which help them to learn to drink themselves. A sip cup is only for the brave! It does work but takes time for them to understand that it is not like a bottle, so be prepared to let them get wet.
  7. Cutlery – By ten months my little girl was all for independence and love to hold the spoon herself. The marks on my walls tell this story well and we have a variety of spoons and baby forks which she is learning to use. The Tommee Tippee spoons change color to let you know how hot the food is. IMG_7708This is a nice touch but I always test the food myself anyway. The shorter spoons and „fork“ are for the babies to start using themselves and are a bit more chunky for them to grasp.
  8. Bowls, plates etc. We have lovely bowls and plates but to be honest they do not get much use because baby girl like to throw them (along with her food) onto the floor. What I find more useful are either the plates and bowls with suction pads underneath (although we gave up on this too because this became the biggest game ever to try and pull them off the table and nothing was being eaten!). Now we use just a placemat and put the finger food onto there. If you are using a high-chair with a tray you will not need this.IMG_7707
  9. Special Washing Up Liquid For Babies – We use this for the bottles and dirty dummies before we sterilize them. It is also good to wash up the cutlery which has landed on the floor because it is especially mild.
  10. Sterilizer – We have the Avent sterilizer because we do not have a microwave. It is pretty big but does a good job. There is space for up to six bottles and a try on top for the teats and dummies. It takes eight minutes. IMG_7088My parents have the Avent microwave sterilizer and that works really well too and is quicker and smaller.
  11. Meal Planner – Planning the meals keeps you and the baby on track and also helps to remind you to take things out of the freezer for the next day! It reduces waste and is cheaper and healthier especially if you are tired one day I know I am quick to reach for the take-away menu… IMG_7050Or else consider a meal delivery service like Hello Fresh which bring you the food and give you the exact ingredients to cook which might also be ok for older babies (check out our review here).
  12. Patience! You cannot buy this sadly, but it is sorely needed. My daughter makes so much mess even our dog cannot keep up – although he tries and tries – she has painted the walls with pumpkin puree and has refused to eat her favorite meal then screamed for something else. It is a lot of fun to eat together with your child and see them try new things, if you can relax a little about the mess and moods. I reassure you that it passes so quickly that in a few years you will watch videos of your little one eating and realize how the time has flown and now they are sitting nicely at the table and eating their food alone.

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