"Yeah," I thought. "That's the kind of parent I want to be." I liked the laid-back nature of her approach. I also really liked that she was confident enough in her son's decision-making skills to allow him that kind of freedom.
When I started feeding Liam, I decided to go the puree route for a number of reasons--Liam was (and still is) really skinny so I wanted to be able to measure exactly how much he was eating, it was more convenient, and my daycare provider seemed to prefer that approach. I tried to not be too strict or forceful about what he ate. While it was important to me to maintain a balanced diet, I didn't really force anything upon Liam. If he didn't want peas, I didn't force him to eat them. I just dug out the carrots or the sweet potatoes, which I knew he'd eat.
As Liam got older, though, I wanted to start incorporating some finger foods. As I was researching, I found this post on The High Chair times by Heather Morgan Shott. I was able to relate to her in so many ways. I started to worry that even though Liam is super skinny now, I might be setting him up to become an obese toddler.
I discovered that some of the things Liam loved as purees, like mangoes and pears, he did not like as finger food. If I baked those mangoes and added some vanilla, though, he loved them. He's not a big fan of the original Baby Mum-Mums, but loves the strawberry-flavored Toddler Mum-Mums, and we know about his affinity for yogurt melts. He loves sweet things like strawberries, but avocados, he could take them or leave them (he feels the same way about bananas, though, so I'm wondering if that's a texture thing). If I give him a sippy cup full of water, he just throws it aside, but if I add juice, he's definitely interested. I'm worried that I've created a monster who only loves sweet things.
Do I throw my laissez faire approach to feeding out the window? Or do I hope that he will choose healthy options on his own? (With some guidance, of course.)
|"These strawberry Mum-Mums are delicious."|
|"Really, Mama. Do you want to try a bite?"|