I have come to the conclusion that babies are very smart. They know when they are on to a good thing. Look at mine for instance – he loves breast milk so much that all he wants to eat or drink is breast milk. What a smart cookie!
With the WHO organisation recommending that babies are breastfed until they are at least 2 years old, I am fine with this. But I am a smart cookie too! I know that for a 10 month old baby, breast milk does not have enough calories or nutrients to help promote good growth. He needs to also eat his solids.
We have just been to the pediatrician and had all his measurements taken. Not only is he underweight, he is also short in length. He is wearing clothes for a 6 month old and even some of those are too big for him. But the visit to the pediatrician has pulled up something I hadn’t even considered. He had his head circumference measured and I was told this was to see if his brain was developing appropriately. Why didn’t I make that connection in that good nutrition is needed for brain development too! Luckily his head measures appropriately for his age and he is only slightly behind in his developmental milestones. But it hammers home to me that he really needs to eat more!
So what did I do? I was wracking my brain thinking about ways to get food into him. With his oral aversion to different textures and flavors, finding something that he will actually keep in his mouth proves tricky. I resort back to the dairy food and find that caramel is his favourite. Then after I have invested in a really good blender stick, I add a lot of meat and meat juice with high calorie vegetables, such as kumara and potatoes to his dairy food. It is a bit of a juggling act trying to find the right balance of texture and taste, but I find that for him 1/3 puree with 2/3 dairy food works well. It is a thick consistency that won’t run off the spoon, but totally smooth with no lumpy bits.
I discover that he likes to play with his food and feel the textures with other parts of his body, rather than his mouth. Ok, I can do that. So I bring out his brother’s old high chair and plonk him in it and attach the tray Hmm, problem. He is so short that he can’t see over the tray. So I had to go and buy one of those clip on high chairs and attach it to the bench. With his head now at a not ideal chin level with the top of the bench, at least he can now see and reach his food. Then the fun begins with the experimentation with his food. It does grate on me having to see so much food going to waste and having to clean up so much mess. It is bath time after every meal and scrub down the kitchen time too. But I accept that this is what I have to do in order to make mealtimes more enjoyable for him, so I do it!
Stay tuned to Freddies Food to find out what happens next and whether or not I will ever get a spoon into my son’s mouth! AND don’t forget to vote for Freddie’s Food in the People’s Choice Best Australia’s Blog Awards.