The first Thursday of the month (and the new year!) means it’s time for Munchkin Meals via Brittany at A Healthy Slice of Life. Check out what the other mamas are feeding their little ones!
Last month, we were having trouble with getting enough protein in our little guy. He just hates those plain old jarred meats (the ones the smell and look exactly like cat food… can you blame him??). I think we’ve come to a nice compromise, one that leaves him full and satisfied, and (hopefully) will pacify his dietitian as well! We have a clinic appointment at the end of the month, so here’s hoping!
He is still waking up once in the night to nurse (actually, he generally wakes up more than once, but I will only nurse him one time). That time can vary between 2am and 5am. He’s definitely not a consistent sleeper, and our dietitian (man, she’s pesky! But we love her!) really wants him to stop nursing overnight. I try to put him back to sleep without nursing if he wakes up before 4am, but sometimes the little guy will just scream and howl, and for the sake of everyone’s sanity, I will nurse him. He always gulps and gulps likes he’s just starving, so I don’t think it’s simply a comfort thing. That part has been a struggle with trying to wean him off of his nighttime nursing, but I’m hoping that we get it resolved soon. My thought is that he is probably not getting enough during the day, and he’s waking up to make up for it at night. It’s a vicious cycle.
Even though his nighttime feeding is inconsistent, he is extremely consistent that 8-8:30am is breakfast. Whether he nurses at 2am or 5am, his internal clock seems to tell him he is hungry right around 8am every morning. It’s a nice schedule to have him on, because it gives me the morning free to get his older brother’s breakfast/lunch made and drop him off at school. When we get home, I give my little guy a few Gerber “Puffs” and a sippy cup of water in his highchair while I prepare his morning medications and enzymes along with his bowl of cereal and fruit. Those puffs are like baby crack! He loves them, and they have been wonderful for letting him practice feeding himself. My favorite thing about them is that since they have no fat or protein, he doesn’t need enzymes to eat them! What a great way to let him “snack” between meals or while we are on the go. He also loves bananas for breakfast, but he hasn’t mastered picking those up on his own yet (I give him half of a banana whole rather than cutting it into small pieces… kind of like the baby-led weaning! He prefers it that way). What he is getting good at is using his sippy cup. Ever since I bought him the Nuby brand with the handles, he is able to do it mostly on his own with occasional help. Woohoo! He also nurses about thirty minutes after his cereal, because the enzymes are good for one hour from the time we give them to him. After that, he has to wait until the next feeding to eat, so we try to make the most out of those little enzymes!
Anytime between 11am and 12pm is lunchtime. I typically eat leftovers from the previous night’s dinner, and then I give my little guy a few pieces of whatever I am eating to try. He’s still learning to pick things up and get them to his mouth, but he loves baked chicken and is able to chew and swallow it easily in very small pieces at a time. I don’t think he gets enough protein from such tiny portions to satisfy his dietitian though, so we also give him a jar food “dinner.” I’ve discovered that he prefers the “3rd foods” and mixing them with a substantial amount of his daily salt intake. He gets 1/4 tsp of salt per day added to his foods, so I generally divide most of that between his lunch and dinner jar foods. I’m hoping that this combo of small portions from my own lunch and the jar food “dinners” is a good compromise to the nasty jarred meats that his dietician wants and what I prefer, which is him getting into the habit of eating whatever the rest of the family eats! So far, so good! And again, he nurses about thirty minutes after his lunch.
At about 2:30 or 3pm, my little guy will nurse again. (I’m sparing you all a picture of me nursing. You’re welcome!) 😉
Like lunchtime, we are getting our little guy in the habit of eating a baby-friendly version of whatever we are eating. Last night I made homemade tomato and cheese tortellini soup (delicious!) and breadsticks with a side of peas (we were trying to use up our leftover peas, can you tell?). I gave him small portions of each, but his favorite was a big chunk of breadstick. I think sometimes he prefers the smaller pieces that he can pick up (like the puffs or pieces of meat) and other times he prefers a big chunk to hold on to. Also like lunch, he gets another portion of the jar food dinner with salt and then nursing about thirty minutes later.
In a suggestion to help him sleep through the night, our dietitian recommended that we feed him a big bowl of cereal and fruit (which I mix with 2oz formula) for his last feeding before bedtime. It doesn’t seem to make any difference in his sleep habits, but he does love his cereal and fruit, so we give it to him anyway! He loves it so much that he slurped it all down last night before I could snap a picture, but it looks just like the breakfast bowl of cereal above. He also nurses, of course.
And that’s it for our seven month old’s day of eats! Thanks for reading our his progress!
How is/was your little one at sleeping through the night? Do/did they wake up to nurse or take a bottle? How did you wean them of it?