For a few weeks before we started solids, we put her in her high chair during meal times and let her play with a baby spoon and a basket of stuffed fruit. She may not have been ready for solids, but she was definitely ready to be part of meal time. Occasionally we would let her taste something, but she usually wasn't interested.
|Baby with her faux first foods|
|She only wanted the end of the spoon with no food on it.|
|The tablecloth was on clearance; next time I'll get a white one|
so I can find and clean up the sweet potato slop more easily.
We had porkchops and apples one night, so I reserved some extra apple pieces for her. I'm no chef, so I couldn't quite get the consistency right, but she was easily able to pick it up and gum on it. The next day I threw some apple slices in a small slow cooker to make them easier to eat for her. (Yes, I should probably get a steamer basket and try that, but that's not really how I cook, so I haven't gone that route yet.) She ended up doing really well eating the cooked apple off of my finger--they were a bit slippery for her to self-feed though. That was probably the day she ate the most food. I kept the rest in the fridge and have been giving her more.
|This is her nomming on some soft-cooked apples.|
(I added some background music to the video, since it was mostly silent. Enjoy.)
We've continued to give her stuff from our plates, too, like last night when we had slow cooked chicken with carrots and celery. The carrots and celery were super soft, and I was surprised when she picked up the celery piece and ate it all by herself. Oh, she has no teeth yet, if you're wondering.
I guess you could call our approach "lazy" but it does take a lot more clean up. Many times we just make bath time immediately after the meal!
If you want to see more pictures and stories of Baby-led Weaning, check out this awesome blog.