So the question was asked- “Why not jarred food?”
Well, for one, fresh has got to be better than food filled with preservatives. Right? Peas in a jar vs. fresh (or frozen) peas steamed and pureed? No added salt, no added anything. I’d rather put less “stuff” into their little bodies if I don’t need to. And if there aren’t preservatives, there’s probably not a whole lot of nutrients left after being cooked long enough to have a shelf life without them, right? Plus, I simply can’t stand the smell of most of the jarred foods and wouldn’t want to eat it myself so why make them eat it?
The second part of my answer is a bit more tied to my needs as a new mom. I wanted to breastfeed exclusively for as long as possible. This didn’t happen. I wanted to pump as long as I could (I pumped 6-8 times a day from day 1 on top of breastfeeding) and my supply vanished around 4 months. I tried everything I could and we made it to almost 5 months before I called it quits.
I hate formula. I hate how it smells, I imagine it doesn’t taste much better. I hate that I couldn’t be the sole source of nutrition for my boys, but at the end of the day, it didn’t work. So I had to make peace with that and move on. I have to believe if I have another baby it will be different, one baby has got to be easier than two, right? The boys have thrived on formula- they are big boys, you’d never know they were premature. So, that makes me OK with formula.
Because I was unable to breastfeed for longer it is even more important to me that I make their food. I mean, my body doesn’t have to produce it, I just have to take the time to make it. So I have no excuse to not do it. At least that’s my reasoning.
I love seeing their faces when they try something new. LOVE IT! You can see the wheels turning as they try to figure out if they like it or not. I love that what I’m feeding them is pretty darn close to what we eat- at this point it’s not even really “pureed” more of a mashed or coarsely ground consistency. It smells good and it tastes very fresh. I would eat everything I’m feeding them. Well, maybe not the spinach, I’m not a fan of cooked spinach.
Cost- if you buy fruit that’s on sale it’s not that bad price wise. Veggies I do a mix of fresh and frozen- a bag of frozen peas is just peas, and it costs $0.99, that’s a steal.
I steam pretty much everything- bananas and avocados just need to be mashed up. I’d say fruit takes the longest since you need to peel and pit/seed it but the steaming really doesn’t take long. Once it’s cooked I blend it to the consistency I need. I got a baby food grinder as a gift but actually like the food processor better- more room. I hate using the blender but an immersion blender would work well too.
I put everything in 1/2 cup Ziplock containers because I’m always feeding two at a time, this just makes it easier for me. I haven’t tried the ice cube tray method but lots of people do that too. I just pull a few containers from the freezer and put them in the fridge for the days meals and they thaw pretty quickly.
I do use boxed cereal but I have given them rice mashed up. I just need to cut out the rice because it doesn’t treat them well- poor Wyatt’s a constipated mess after rice. Brown rice is not much better. I need to start giving them plain oatmeal, we always have it in the house and it’s a snap to make.
I do dread the next few months because I absolutely despise cutting things up. If you’ve ever had an onion cut by me it was probably sliced, not diced. I’m going to have to get with it and brush up on my knife skills so they can continue to have fresh fruits and veggies once they are into the self feeding stage.
New food added to the list: CHICKEN!
On it’s own, kinda dry. Mixed with carrots it was Lincoln’s worst nightmare- we had our first meal refusal (big tears, crying, screaming) mixed with carrots, cereal and thinned out with pear juice- not bad. Chicken mixed with spinach and cereal today went over much better. They really love that spinach!
Also, plums with the skin on in their mesh feeders were a hit today. Red skins in the mesh feeders mixed with drool and leaking on everything means big purple stains on everything it touches.