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Help me with solids

My daughter is 11 months old. She loves nursing. She'll eat solid foods, kind of, but mealtime is just playtime to her. To this date she hasn't eaten more than a few tablespoons at a time, and that is on a very good day.

So, I'm not worried about her nutritionally. Breastmilk is great for that. I'm not interested in weaning her (I want to be breastfeeding at 2 years +). I'd like solid foods to replace some breastmilk so I can be apart from her for more than 2 hours (say, to see a movie with my husband or something). I was hoping to accomplish this when she was a year old, but I don't see that happening in the next month with the way she approaches solid foods. To her, they are toys that taste good, but not something you eat when you are hungry. How can I help her see that solid foods can satiate her hunger just like breastmilk can?

Maybe a bit of info about how I do feed her solids. She refuses to be spoon fed. So I let her take the spoon, I tell her to "put the spoon in your mouth" and she puts the spoon in her mouth. Usually most of the food goes in (although first she takes the spoon from me forcefully, flings it over her head and half of it ends up on the floor behind her) and I cheer. Now she is insisting upon dipping the spoon in the container herself which is not very successful - tonight she wouldn't eat anything I had put on the spoon. She just pounded the spoon into the bowl and then flung the food on the floor. Very little ended up in her mouth. I try giving her finger foods to eat too - small pieces of fruits and veggies and she puts those in her mouth and then usually spits them out.

Caitlin refused to be fed as well.  I just fed her finger foods for the most part.  I quit my outside job when Caitlin was 14 months old, and she lost just about all interest in solid foods.  All she wanted to do was nurse.  It worried me, and I talked to the lactation consultant about that.  She say this is common when babies start walking and such.  They gain some independence but still crave the closeness that Mom offers.  She also said this is common.  We also discussed that some babies show no interest in solid foods for some time.  A friend of mine could hardly get her daughter to eat solids, and ended up offering her finger foods all day long. 

Anyway, what I want to say is that when you daughter is ready she will let you know.  At least in my experience, once Caitiln got into eating solids, she really got into it.  Avacados were her favorite at your daugter's age.  As far as you being able to get away, I'd just pump a bit and put it in a sippy cup.  She probably won't take it from you but would from someone else.  My advice would be to just keep trying as you are and to try a variety of foods.  Eventually it will make sense to her.  Oh, and I'd trying feeding her solids after she is almost full from nursing.  Trying to give her solids when she is really hungry and knows what she wants is just going to be frustrating for both of you.   

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2 things:

1. give her her own spoon to play with and try to use while you are feeding her with a different spoon

2. let her try a fork. its much easier to stab things and get them in your mouth than a spoon (even veggies!)

3. at each meal, have a mix of spoon stuff (using method #1) and finger foods to occupy her in between spoon bites

that's 3.
:)

PS Lyle JUST started eating veggies at 20 months (organic canned green beans). before that, he would only eat winter squash and sweet potato (but he stopped eating those too!). He is super picky!

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I remember when my son was about 6 months old I started him on solids and he had very limited interest at first.  The only thing I fed him for the first couple of months was Gerber baby oatmeal mixed with squashed banana and breastmilk one meal a day and then he only ate like maybe a tsp or two.  Other then that he was exclusively breast fed until about 8 or 9 months.  At around 9 months he got  hungrier and nursing just wasn't doing it anymore and he started loosing interesin in nursing in favor of eating.  I started feeding him twice a day and gave him baby food sweet potatos, squash, green beans, peas, apple sauce, pears, etc.  I had WIC so I got baby food for free, including meat which I HAD to get, but I only fed that to my cats because it was disgusting! 

I guess my situation was a little different, he just started to loose interest in nursing at around 10 or 11 months old and preferred to eat.  AT around 12 months old it was to the point he would refuse to nurse, when would cry whenever I put in in the position.  At that point he only nursed once or twice a day, usually to go to sleep at night, but otherwise he preferred food. 

Then he just said nope, not doing it anymore at around 13 moths old and that was it.  I know it is a pain, but I really believe that if she was ready to start eating solids she would.  Personally I wouldn't push her too hard.

For my son to start out I mixed food with breastmilk, everything.  Maybe try that? 

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hopfrog, your daughter is adorable.
Your post about how she wants to have her own spoon & feed herself made me smile. That was Jesse to a 'T'. He was Mr. Independent & insisted on doing it himself & he would say, "I do, I do". He would get more on him than in him & there was always cleaning up after he ate....him, the highchair, the floor & sometimes the wall  ;)
I don't really have any advice to help but I like the sippy cup idea. She will get the hang of solid food soon.

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She seems pretty average in her eating to me, I have 3 kids.  I know getting my first to eat solids was a challenge because he drank so much formula he wasn't hungry when we gave him solids. I tried to limit his feedings before meal times, so he could have a bottle, or nurse,  about 3 hrs before time when I wanted to try some solids. Then he was more interested in eating, and could have a bottle or nurse after trying some solids.  That helped.

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my daughter was obsessed with nursing, its all she wanted to do for 2 years :) She didn't like being fed from a spoon at all! She loved mashed avocado, (I just let her use her fingers to eat it,) and mashed bananas...she also really liked "Purely O's" that had been soaked in a little rice milk....she was much more into "finger foods" than the pureed stuff...by 1 year old Kea was occassionally having a little rice milk, (it says ask you doctor on the package, but ours said it was fine as an "in between" nursing kind of thing once she was 1 year old.)  I was back at work and even with pumping every 2 hours she sometimes wanted more than I had stored.  Rice milk doesn't have enough nutrients that babies get from breast milk or formula so it shouldn't be used interchangably, but my doctor was okay with it as a supplement at 1 year old.  (so you could go to a movie or something.)

I would suggest mashed avocado, its baby crack

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Hey to all you wonderful moms - thanks for taking the time to reply!

I know Amelia is perfectly normal, and her behavior is perfectly normal and I'm sure she will someday eat solid foods (I mean, everyone does, right?)- I'd just really like to get some time to myself and some time for just my husband and me. I keep having visions in my head as she flings her sweet potato across the room of me in a YouTube video nursing her when she's 8 years old and people talking about how weird (disgusting/creepy) I am (for the record, I think the woman in that video is none of those things - but I don't want to follow in her footsteps).

Avocado was Amelia's first food. She's still pretty meh about it but we keep trying. I'm not sure that I could pump anymore (I had oversupply at first and pumped huge quantities, which has all since been donated), but I could give it a try again, I guess. Not really looking forward to it because it is such a hassle. That and she hasn't had a bottle since she was 8 days old - the few times my husband has tried since have been complete failures. Maybe I could try a sippy cup. Does anyone have suggestions of a brand? I tried one (with water in it) but I think it requires the child to suck through a straw and Amelia has no concept of that. I might try just having her drink her milk out of a regular cup. She does pretty well with that and water, but someone has to hold the cup for her.

I usually try feeding her solids about 1/2 way between a nursing session and the next one (she still nurses every 2 hours), maybe I could try closer to the next feeding so she'll be a little hungrier but not REALLY hungry. I also usually try to give her mushed up of whatever we are eating at meal times, and that usually ends up in her lap.

And L2A, I like your idea of giving her another spoon to play with. She's gone to bed for tonight but I'm going to try tomorrow morning. The fork idea is good too - I'll try that when I get a smaller fork.

And Jessesmum, thanks for the compliment. I hate to be "one of those moms" but I think she's adorable too!

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as far as sippy cups I like the non-spill, bpa-free kind...we used to use born-free bottles, which you can buy a sippy-cup top for and use as either a bottle, (w/ a "nipple" top,) or as a sippy cup, (w/ a soft, sippy top on.)  As my daughter got older, and figured out she could spill that kind by smushing the rubber-top down, I started getting ones at target with hard-plastic, (still BRA-free) tops, that don't leak no matter what!  The Born-Free ones were a nice transition. 

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I didn't want to start a new thread for this...I just have a few questions about getting babies started on solids.

My son is almost 8 months.  We started giving him solids regularly at 6 months (once a day), but he's only really gotten into it in the last 3 weeks or so (he's now up to 3 times per day).  I was wondering:

1) He's still breastfeeding about 6 times a day and he's really sucking them dry, but if I offer more solids instead he throws up.  Is that normal, and is there any reason to cut back on breastfeeding if it's not interfering with his solids?

2) At what point is it ok to add seasonings (incl. salty things like soy sauce) to his food (as opposed to plain mashed fruit/vegs)?

3) Any tips on getting him to drink water from a sippy cup?  Right now he just chews on the mouthpiece or blows into it and gets water squirted all over his shirt.  ::)

4) He's not getting a huge variety at the moment...I'm sort of sticking with what I know he likes, although I'm trying to branch out.  So far he likes: pumpkin, apple, banana, sweet potato, small bites of bread or bread products (homemade pancakes, bagels, etc), cantaloupe, tomato, mandarin
Doesn't like (but haven't tried in a while): peas, carrots, avocado
Still doesn't like: cereals (cream of wheat, rice, baby oatmeal/muesli...I've tried mixed with breastmilk or just with water)
Any other suggestions/recipes would be helpful.

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1) every child is different, and ready to move onto mostly solid foods at different times. My daughter was way more interested in eating than nursing, so maybe he's not ready to cut down on breastmilk just yet?

2) I added a bit of seasoning right away, just not hot stuff, but salt, eb, cinnamon, etc.

3) sippy cups just take practice. You could maybe try holding a little cup for him, and letting him slurp out of that.

4) I just mushed up whatever we we're eating, as long as it wasn't spicy. Beans and tortillas, steamed veggies, she really liked indian food( dahl and sag and naan are mushy enough for littles).

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Thanks nmpixie!  The people at the child clinic were pretty adamant about giving plain fruits and vegs at first to get them used to the taste (one gave the example of a kid who ate peas, potato and carrot all mixed together but wouldn't eat any of them on their own), so I was nervous about adding spices or anything. But I also don't want him to only like bland food, because DH and I cook with a lot of spices.  I made him some pasta and tomato sauce last night (small macaroni, and the sauce was just tomatoes, garlic, and dried basil).  He seemed to enjoy it but didn't eat very much.

I thought of another question...is there any reason not to give him peanut butter or other nut butters if I'm 99.9999% sure that he's not allergic?  I know nuts are a choking hazard, but other than allergies I can't think of any reason not to let him have nut butters.  I eat peanuts/peanut butter/nuts on a daily basis and it hasn't affected him (either through breastmilk or me touching him after I've touched nuts (tee hee), or smelling PB cookies baking, sitting next to an open jar of PB, etc).  I'm not sure if eating nuts is totally different to touching/smelling them.

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They say no peanut butter for the first 2 years, because the child can develop an allergy, but my doc. really recommended other nut butters. We did a lot of almond and cashew. She is way vegan friendly, and almost, but not quite vegan(same diet as pres. Clinton), and said they were actually really important as a good source of healthy fats.

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