After some initial, ah, resistance, my 7-month-old has embraced the concept of spoon-fed solid foods. He eats like a champ these days, mowing through YoBaby yogurts, puréed fruits, sweet potato, corn, oatmeal, smashed-up muffins, and basically anything goo-oriented that isn’t bright green. (I know, I know, he should probably be eating more strained peas, but listen, I tried a bite and frankly I don’t fault him for having a sense of taste.)
The inevitable introduction of solid foods has a couple of downsides; for one, the diapers. It’s no longer a relatively inoffensive milk byproduct in there, you know what I mean? And also, the sheer chaotic mess of mealtimes, my god.
Well, kids are messy, and I’ve discovered it’s really easier on everyone’s sanity if I try and be zen about this fact and not go fussily wiping down surfaces after every bite. There’s not much that can be done about a baby who loves to stuff his feet into his yogurt-filled mouth — who am I to deny such pleasures? — and it’s inevitable that at some point, the feeder will receive a sneezed faceful of banana slime from the feedee.
Some products do help smooth the process a bit, though. Here are some of my favorites:
Munchkin Soft-Tip Spoons. I really like these spoons. They’re long enough for me to get bites in Dylan’s mouth while dodging his grabby little hands, and the bowl of the spoon is just the right size. Plus, they’re groovy and colorful.
The First Years Take & Toss Bowls. I’ve had a bunch of these bowls forever, despite the fact that they’re “take and toss”. They’ve held up fantastically through a million washes, and they’re a great size for sending little goo-meals into daycare. They’re BPA-free, never leak, and can be nested for easy storage.
Chicco Caddy Hook On Chair. My friend gave me this chair when her boys outgrew it and it’s amazing. We use it at our kitchen nook table for our 3-year-old — I stashed away the giant toe-stubbing highchair and he’s been sitting in this ever since (uh, is it weird to put a 3-year-old in an infant seat? Whatever, it keeps him in one place during mealtimes). It’s designed for travel, but it’s a great space-saver at home. I’d like to use it for Dylan, but I’m guessing he’ll need a tray — this seems like a good similar product, I think I might buy it soon.
Circo Bibs. I know: bibs, DUH. But man, some bibs just suck. You want either a thick enough fabric so stuff doesn’t soak right through, or something like these handy Circo bibs that have a vinyl backing. I like these because they’re cheap, they don’t stain too easily, and they hold up through many, many launderings.
What sorts of things do you find useful when it comes to feeding babies?