When it came time to wean my first born son, it was one of the most exciting and scary times of my life. We chose the baby led weaning method very early on and he took to it like a duck to water. It’s one of the best parenting decisions I’ve made and I’m still praised for it years later now he’s a fully-fledged toddler and happy to eat anything and everything.
My second born son is soon to turn six months old and we will be following the same method of weaning again. Are you still unsure whether to choose traditional or baby led weaning? Read on for five reasons why you should choose the baby led way.
You can both enjoy mealtimes together
Baby led weaning is all about you enjoying mealtimes as a family, as opposed to you having to cook something separate for baby and spoon feed him it while your food gets cold. I loved that I could rustle up an evening meal or a healthy breakfast for us all and plonk chunks of crumpets or pasta on my son’s highchair while I enjoyed my food too. Eating together also teaches baby how to chew and eventually use cutlery too.
The mess can be cleaned up
If fear of the mess that baby led weaning causes is putting you off, then don’t let it. By purchasing a few simple items, you can combat the mess and make your life ten times easier. We swore by a washable cover all bib, a high chair with a huge tray and eating on tiled or laminate flooring which can be quickly cleaned up with a dust pan and brush between mealtimes. If you’ve got a dog, then even better!
You don’t need to invest in unnecessary equipment
If you choose traditional weaning, it means purchasing blenders, steamers, pots and spoons which are all completely unnecessary when you chose baby led weaning. Apart from the coverall bib, you don’t need anything extra to baby led wean. Simply cut the food you’re about to eat appropriately (eg finger sized pieces for fruit and veg) and off you go! Doddl’s ergonomic set is great for young children and makes it easy for them to use on their own. It took a few months of practice, but once he was 18 months old he was really adept with using a knife and fork thanks to Doddl cutlery being perfectly shaped for little hands.
Eating on the go is easier
When you need to go and about, instead of packing jars and pouches and worrying about needing them heating up, you can simply take a few snacks such as veg sticks, fruit or rice cakes, or even share a little bit of what you’re eating if you are out in a restaurant.
It’s great for baby’s fine motor skills
When baby first starts weaning, it’s so hit and miss to whether they can pick up the food and get it in their mouth. With bigger bits it’s easier, but with small pieces like peas or blueberries, it can be slightly more challenging. Baby led weaning gives baby the chance to practice using their fine motor skills to pick up food and transfer to the mouth. We loved practicing with Cheerios, peas, sweet corn and squished blueberries.
Whatever method of weaning you decide to choose, this period of baby’s life will be one of the most fun experiences you will ever have. The exploration of new tastes is an exciting time and I wish you the best of luck on your weaning journey.
Nicola who blogs at Mummy to Dex lives in West Lancashire with her husband, three year old toddler Dexter and newborn baby Felix. Extremely passionate about baby led weaning, she mainly blogs about this topic, but also write about pregnancy, travel, days out and life as a Mum of two boys.