Baby Buys – Weaning Essentials

I started weaning Baby T onto solids the day he turned six months, and he’s since moved on from purees to finger foods and chunky, fork-mashed dishes and every day becoming more independent! Here are the essentials I’ve been using, mostly on a daily basis, through each stage of weaning;

Weaning Essentials

(1) The Bloom Fresco high chair was one of those items that we just fell in love with once we saw it. We considered other options but kept going back to the Fresco for its original, sleek and modern design. And actually I wish I found it earlier because the Fresco can be used from birth as a recliner and up to 36 months. I bought the white version with a snakeskin grey seat pad at Lula Sapphire, which was a quick and easy transaction and in a couple of days the high chair was delivered. It was fairly easy to put together. It comes with two seat pads, one to go with the booster seat and the regular one that can be used up to 36 months. At 6 months and tall for his age, Baby T was sitting too low in the high chair without the comfort nest. Now at 10 months, he’s beginning to outgrow it and is ready to switch to the regular seat pad. I feed Baby T in the kitchen where we have a breakfast bar – with bar stools that we bought in white to match the high chair! It’s easy to adjust the height if I want to move the chair next to the dining table, and I love that the seat swivels 360 degrees, so I can turn him to look outside or to watch me if I head over to the other part of the kitchen. The only drawback, besides being pricey, is that food tends to get stuck in the strap seams, and you need to give the seat a very good scrub to clean off all the food. [Bloom Fresco Chrome High Chair, £370.00]

(2) I use this steamer and blender on an almost daily basis – now that Baby T is 10 months and I have been fork mashing most of his food, I use this mostly to steam vegetables, although I do puree some of his breakfasts (banana and prune with yogurt, for example). While I already own a steamer (a Tefal three-in-one slow cooker/steamer/rice cooker) and a blender, both of those appliances take up a lot more counter space and are more time consuming to clean than this one small machine. I also just wanted an appliance that would only be used for preparing baby food. The fruit or vegetables always come out just right when they’re steamed, and it makes things easier for me to let it steam then cool down when I’m doing other things. For some recipes, it is too small for me to use it as a blender, and in those cases I just use an immersion blender, which is also useful to get it to the right texture I need now that I’m not whipping everything into a puree anymore. [Philips AVENT Combined Baby Food Steamer and Blender, £99.00, reduced to £63.97]

(3) A simple, healthy and tasty breakfast I like to make for Baby T is mashing together avocado and half a banana. The masher also comes in handy when I make Weetabix with mashed banana and milk. I regularly use the bowl for other meals.  [Annabel Karmel Food Masher and Bowl, £6.99, reduced to £4.59]

(4) I bought a couple of plastic bibs but Baby T seems much more comfortable wearing this waterproof neoprene bib by MAM. It’s flexible and soft to wear and easily rolls up to go into your changing bag. I found it very useful to bring two of them while we were away in Italy for two weeks. I alternated between the two, hand-washing them a few times before putting them through the washing machine. The bib can be worn flat or with the bottom pocket rolled up to catch any stray food. [MAM Bibetta Ultra Bib, 4+ months, £4.50]

(5) These stack-able storage cups are perfect for storing Baby T’s meals and chopped vegetable snacks (cucumber, sweet potato fries, broccoli etc) in the fridge or freezer. I also use them for storing various amounts of chicken stock for his recipes, e.g. 200ml or 150ml, so I can just defrost the right amount. When we’re traveling, I bring three or four with me, so I can simply seal them shut after they’re used. [Philips AVENT Baby Food Storage Set, £13.50]

(6) Baby T loves snacking with the Mebby feeder! It comes especially handy when I need something to keep him busy while I finish preparing his food or tidying up – it’s also helpful while travelling! I bought this after I ruined a mesh feeder with my silly mistake of trying it with banana which as it turns out is impossible to clean out of mesh! I find this feeder easy to clean, whether by hand or in the dishwasher, and Baby T loves the independence of feeding himself with this fun object. So far I’ve been using it for fruit and vegetables, but you can use it with any solid food, including meat or chicken etc. [Mebby Genius Fresh Food Weaning Feeder, £6.99]

(7) I’ve made a lot of the recipes in these two cookbooks! Tyler Florence’s infant, baby and toddler cookbook is full of delicious recipes that are healthy and easy to make, and I often eat the same meal with Baby T, just fork mashing or blending his portion. Annabel Karmel’s cookbook is very useful for preparing and cooking the basics and baby-friendly versions of typical favorite family meals (e.g. bolognese, cottage pie), with plenty of recipes to choose from for each stage of weaning. I have purchased a couple of other cookbooks but these are the two I keeping going back to time and time again to prepare Baby T’s meals. [Start Fresh by Tyler Florence, £11.88] and [Annabel Karmel's New Complete Baby & Toddler Meal Planner, £14.99, reduced to £8.00]

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Posted on July 31, 2014, in Baby and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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