The Blog.

Baby Led Weaning

I hadn't really put much thought into baby food... it's always seemed so far off.... until Josh's sister asked me one day a couple months ago if I was planning to make Lucy's baby food myself. Not knowing there was an option other than pureed baby food, I figured I'd give that a go since I really had no reason not to (other than I hate cooking!) BUT THEN - somehow in the past several weeks I learned about baby led weaning (BLW).

I had never heard of this before, so for those like me it is basically feeding your baby regular table food right from the start. GASP! You can do that?! No purees, no ice cube trays, no spoon feeding. You basically just give them whatever you're eating and let them feed themselves. Who knew?! (It has nothing to do with actual 'weaning' as it means here in the US. It means weaning in the British definition, which just means introducing things other than milk into the baby's diet.)

With baby led weaning, the baby still gets their nutrition primarily from milk for the first year so for the first couple months the baby may not even eat the food as much as play with it, put it in their mouth and spit it out... but it still helps them learn about the textures, etc.  There's a term commonly used in BLW circles... "Food before one is just for fun!"

I like this method for several reasons. For one, it just seems easier.. less work involved as far as not having to make special food, mashing everything up, etc. since she'll just eat whatever we're eating. Plus it makes a lot of sense to me... it teaches her to feed herself, to eat what/when she wants (hence the term baby led) and thus develops healthy eating habits. It teaches her to chew first and then swallow (vs. learning to swallow before chewing with purees). It will make for a happier eating experience for her... no force feeding her by the spoonful when she doesn't want it (have you ever tried to feed a baby pureed baby food?! Not always fun!) and we won't have to deal with transitioning from purees to real food.

I also like that it will motivate me to make better food choices since I'll be sharing with her! Not that I make horrible choices now - I try to eat pretty healthy anyway, but I'm thinking I'll be more likely to opt for cooking a nice dinner vs ordering take out on a busy night and even to try new things with her! I'm also looking forward to us all eating together as a family, and at the same time as Josh again ;)

So anyway! That's how we're introducing Lucy to solids! AND WE DID IT LAST WEEK! 

Everything I'd read so far about BLW (and there's not a ton since it's kind of a new thing!) said to wait until 6 months... but I've been wondering what kind of magical switch flips on the day she turns 6 months old. Finally I did a little more research during her nap and found some mommies who had started a little after 5 months - IF their baby showed they were ready! 

Signs of readiness include: being interested in food (check!), being able to put objects in mouth (check check!), and being able to sit up unassisted (check check check!) The physical ones are the most important... and Lucy is definitely ready! She grunts and gets really frustrated when you eat in front of her like she wants some, too! Heck, the other night I was out to dinner with some girl friends and she grabbed a handful of my salad and shoved it into her mouth before I could even set my fork down and stop her!  So, I realized she's ready for food NOW, and nothing is going to be super different or special about June 13th versus today! 

For her first meal she had chicken and carrots, and she LOVED it! I just gave her the piece of chicken above (grilled with no seasoning) and a few steamed carrots. She was SO excited!!! I'm glad I didn't make her wait another 2 weeks...she was so ready! 

Like I mentioned before, at this stage it's mostly just about exploring textures. I'm pretty sure she didn't even actually eat anything. She mostly just sucked and gnawed on the chicken most of the time, and same with the carrots. If little pieces came off in her mouth she kind of just moved them around and then spit them out. 

I love this little clip I posted on Snapchat (lynn.adwell)! Her little head tilt with her chicken gets me every time! So content with her chicken like a big girl!

So that's our baby led weaning journey so far! She's had the chicken and carrots for a meal and also an apple slice, a slice of raw carrot and a slice of celery to just chomp on (good teethers!)  For now, I'm just going to offer her foods at dinner I think.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask! If you have any tips or recipes PLEASE share!! This is a bit intimidating I know, I still feel that way but am kind of just diving right in... while also kinda tip-toeing! ha! :) 

Lucy's first sleepover!

Last Friday, Lucy and I ventured up to North Vernon for a fun day with her cousins! Knock on wood, the trip up there is getting easier and easier.. the past two times we've gone, Lucy has slept the whole way there AND back! *jazz hands!* This day it even took 2 hours to get there instead of 1 thanks to road construction! I hope she keeps it up because I'm hoping to go up every couple weeks this summer for days like this! 

Kindel, Lucy, Aidan, and Adalee

Kindel, Lucy, Aidan, and Adalee

Cindel was in town from Chicago with baby Kindel, so of course we had to get them all together! Lucy was born in December, and then Kindel and Adalee were born in February and March a week apart. I still can't believe we all had girls! I thought for sure one of them would be a boy! 

We had to get them matching jammies of course! 

 footie pajamas (my favorite brand!)

Getting a picture of all 3 of them was a lot harder than you would think! 

By the time we were done, 2 hours had somehow passed!! I literally don't know how that happened. 

Behind the scenes. Ha! 

I'm still not used to Lucy being the big one!! Someone said they were like S, M, & L... and if you count Aidan then there's XL, too! haha! We did weigh the girls and they were all 3 pounds apart (~14, 11, & 8lbs)

Cindel & Kindel, Jenn & Aidan & Adalee, and me & Lucy

Cindel & Kindel, Jenn & Aidan & Adalee, and me & Lucy

I'm sure I have explained this before but for those who don't know... Cindel and I are not actually related, we just have the same brothers (she has the same mom as them and I have the same dad!) So technically Lucy and Kindel aren't cousins, but it's just easier to explain it that way rather than saying, "Well, it's my brothers' other sister's daughter..." Most people are like, "Say what?!" So yeah, they are basically cousins.. they have the same uncles and they're gonna grow up seeing each other at family functions, so they might as well just be "cousins!" :) And then of course Jenn is married to my brother Adam! 

These two were cracking me up! It's so fun to watch their relationship grow. Aidan told me where Lucy's hair, eyes, nose, mouth, elbow, belly button and toes were (without me even asking! smart boy!) and she thought he was just hilarious!! After he held the girls for a picture, he tried to sit on Lucy's lap. I mean, that's only fair, right?! Seems logical to me. 

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Later that evening my brother Eric came in town, so we had a pizza party with him! 

Then we spent the night with Lucy's GG! (Great Grammy)

She's been asking for a sleepover since Lucy was born, so I'm glad we finally got to stay! 

The next morning Lucy read (ate) the paper and GG put a 'coon skin hat on her. Totally normal. 

I was a little nervous about spending the night since Lucy sleeps so well at night in her crib... I'm always afraid doing something different will mess that up, but she's so easy going! I knew she did great on vacation, but she's even more interested in new surroundings now than she was then so I didn't know how she'd do! But she slept with me in GG's guest room and slept like a champ! 

So thankful for my family and even though I wish they were closer, I know an hour ain't so bad and I'm grateful they're not farther away! Here's to lots of baby play dates this summer! 

IKEA Ektorp Sofa Review

I still occasionally get emails about our IKEA Ektorp sofas asking how we like them (why doesn't IKEA allow reviews on their website?!) We've had them about 4 years now, so I think I'm qualified to give a decent review! 

(we also have the love seat, but it didn't fit well in the frame with the lens I was using and I was too lazy to go all the way to the basement to get a new one and switch it. #truelife)

Anywho, I posted a review 3 years ago after we had them about a year. I cringe a little linking to that post because my decor style has changed A LOT! Ha! It took me awhile to figure out what I liked and what worked in our big room and to realize that we really just needed to paint the walls something other than that ugly builder's beige (that always photographed yellow!). I also wasn't sure what to do with the big wall behind the couch, and am SO GLAD Josh finally added the wainscoting/paneling! We did that almost 3 years ago now I still love it!! 

I digress. Again.

ANYWAY. Back to the couches! 

After 4 years, I can safely say we still love them! I just recently purchased my 3rd set of slipcovers for them... so the last set we had lasted 3 years! They are still pretty comfy and are holding up nicely! I take a nap on the couch almost every day with Lucy. Since Kosmo and Lola like to sleep on the top of the back cushions, those do go flat a little easier now, but the nice thing about these couches is that the cushions are reversible so I just switch them every time I wash the covers and that helps them not get so worn. And my favorite feature is still the fact that I can buy new covers & completely change the look of our decor or just in case something happens to the ones we have now.

I will say, in an effort to be completely honest, I went couch shopping with my mom (for her new house... she finally moved out! sniff sniff) last weekend and there were some couches that I thought were more comfy than these!! I half way thought about looking into getting some new ones, but the fact that I can change out the slipcovers still trumps anything else right now... especially now that we have Lucy! She doesn't make a huge mess yet, but I know it's only a matter of time!

So, bottom line: I would totally recommend these couches for anyone with kids and/or pets looking for a comfy, durable couches that won't break the bank! I purchased them sight unseen from IKEA's website 4 years ago, and they still remain in my family room today! 

^^^ Currently. Un-staged. Real life. Right now.^^^

 

Happy Wednesday! xoxo