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A has now been at this whole eating solids thing for almost 6 months and it's been a pretty awesome. J and I could not be more proud of our gal. In the past few weeks we've added some interesting items such as lamb, Ethiopian food and quince into the mix and A is still going at everything with unbridled enthusiasm.
I've been thinking more and more about what items really made my life easier with introducing solids. So decided to make a list of must-have items for introducing solids to share what has worked best for us. This may or may not be what works for you but have a look and hopefully this will be helpful.
- a rel="nofollow" Vitamix Blender- While this is not the cheapest item of this type that's available on the market, it's what I used and I could not have been happier with it. I received mine as a gift for my 30th birthday, which I was quite happy about because I absolutely despise my Kitchenaide blender (terrible at blending most things). The Vitamix is excellent for getting a nice smooth puree which is awesome when you first begin introducing foods. You can always add foods like rice and mashed up veggies to these smooth purees as your baby starts getting older to add texture.
- Silicone Steamer- I use non-stick pans and those metal steamers make me nervous that I'm going to scratch them. Thank goodness they make silicone steamers. I steamed the vast majority of the veggie's that I pureed for A (with the exception of certain strongly flavored foods like brussels sprouts which I boiled).
- Kidco Baby Food Mill- This is perfect for when you're starting to add texture into your purees, similar to that of rice. I especially liked it for meats. My Aunt and Uncle gave this to us when A was only a couple months old and I am so glad that they did!
- Cuisinart Mini-Prep Food Processor- I am not really a fan of my large food processor, because it's a hassle to use, but I absolutely love my mini-prep processor and use it for everything. When it comes to baby food making, I loved this for getting a rough, textured grind on items that aren't cooked like avocados (when A first started those) and bananas. I used this for more individual servings (unlike the Vitamix, where I made several servings in one shot).
- Gerber Graduates Soft Bite Infant Spoons- I went with these spoons because we already had some at our home from Little Darling Confections. It seemed silly to go out and spend money on items that we already had. I've been very happy with these spoons and will continue to use and recommend them.
- Tommee Tippee Explora Easi Roll Bib- These bibs were (and are) especially great for when A began feeding herself. It stayed on securely and clean up was as simple as rinsing it and putting it into the dishwasher.
- Ice Cube Trays- For freezing your purees. I don't have a specific brand that I recommend but having used both high quality and cheap ice cube trays, the high quality were better to work with. In this case, you get what you pay for.
- A high chair or seat for feeding the baby- We started with the bumbo when she was tiny (worked well but kind of a pain because you cannot turn away for even a second, as the baby isn't strapped in) and moved on to the Phil and Ted's Lobster seat. As you can see I did not link to this. We like the chair when it's actually attached to the table and we especially like the fact that she is at the actual table and not separate from us in a full size highchair. Additionally, I like how little space it takes up in our small home. But cleaning this is an absolute nightmare and if your baby is anything like ours, this chair is an huge mess after every meal. The fabric is not machine washable and in order to remove it you actually have to unscrew the mechanism which is such a pain in the butt. I really should have done more research before registering for this. We are currently trying to figure out what kind of chair to replace this with. I'm resistant to getting a full size highchair as it's huge and I like A being at the table with us. But we'll see. No links because I don't recommend this chair. When I do this for the next kid we will hopefully have a different chair situation that works better for us. I'll try to update this list at that time. UPDATE: we have been using and LOVING this Fisher-Price Booster Seat which was recommended by a few different friends- It's so easy to clean, super portable, it grows with our daughter and you really can't beat the price or the tiny footprint. To be honest, I'm not sure why anyone would opt for a full size high chair (but of course to each their own!). We actually rarely even use the tray, since we love having A right at the table with us. I love it so much and my parents even got this version at a slightly lower price point with less bells and whistles for their home.
I also encourage you to get a dog to clean up all the food your kid drops on the floor. Just kidding. But seriously, Macie LOVES A's new eating habits and I don't mind not having to pick up chunks of foor before I mop! Since A's taste training is a work in progress, I may come back and update this periodically when I find new things that work for us.
What kind of highchair or seating option did you use for feeding your baby?
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