Mommy Moments: Weaning Is Such An Important Stage For Babies

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Our columnist, Jennifer Kissane, writes about her experience of weaning with son Fionn…

Since I last wrote, two weeks ago, we were awaiting the arrival of Fionn’s first tooth.

We have had a double celebration as two bottom teeth arrived, one a few days after the other. Peace has now reigned again and I’m sure this is the calm before the storm of more teething!

While all this was going on, I had also begun weaning. Like I said before it’s all go! It is recommended that baby will start weaning between 4-6 months.

My little man was not ready at all at four months so we tentatively began at five months. I gave him pure baby rice at the beginning, which is a very popular first food.

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It has the consistency of baby’s milk really so it’s all about texture and the new experience. You thicken it as you go along. You don’t need, any fancy culinary items to begin weaning, a steamer/ saucepan, a blender or a sieve and masher , pots or ice cube trays to freeze if you want to make batches and off you go.

After a week or so, we were trying vegetable purees and then I moved on to fruit puree. Some people say, try the same thing, only one or two teaspoons, every day for three days, such as carrots for three days, then broccoli for three days and so on.

Others would say, try a new vegetable every day. You know your baby and your baby won’t be long telling you what they like and don’t like.

Mixing two vegetables together and two fruits together, make new taste combinations, you can’t go too far wrong. At the moment, Fionn is enjoying a variety of tastes, so far so good. I freeze two or three portions at a time and simply defrost as I need.

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I was thinking today as I soaked luminous orange stains from the baby clothes, that I would definitely recommend – if they can be got – some kind of baby overalls, preferably in black as the food does go everywhere!

They might be getting tiny spoonfuls, but babies are amazing mess makers!

Weaning is such an important developmental stage for your baby. Think of each taste as one in their encyclopedia of tastes. You are setting them up, nutritionally as well as in their overall development in experiencing a healthy varied diet at the beginning.

There are also wonderful free resources out there too, with recipes and ideas to make weaning an easy and enjoyable journey. www.thefirst1000days.ie has recipes from pregnancy all the way to toddler age, to support you at every stage.

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