If you’re new to my blog and don’t already know, my daughter Amelia has a CMI (Cows Milk Intolerance) and weaning was something I was dreading. You can read all about how we diagnosed her with a CMI here. We started Amelia on pouches when she was 4 months and 2 weeks as she was showing signs of being ready, and I thought I’d share with you all the things we’re starting out with on our journey.
So for me, the pouches or making my own puree’s had to be the thing I was most nervous about. When I started looking, I couldn’t see any pouches that didn’t have milk in. All the porridge’s and jars, they all contained milk and I had it set in my head that I’d be waking up Sunday Morning’s steaming vegetables and blitzing them just to save the pennies, but thankfully I carried on looking and found a few brands that we could use for those days I don’t have a puree defrosted or we’re out and about on the go and want to reach for one easily.
Some of the brands we have tried are Piccolo, Babease, Heinz, Mamia and Organix and at now 6 months we have discovered Amelia is pretty happy having most things aside some pure vegetable pouches.
Babease were the first pouches we had, I was lucky enough to be invited to an event where we got to meet the Founder and Chef to top celebrities Tom Redwood (who is so so lovely btw! ) where some of us mummy bloggers had the chance to learn a little more about Babease and create 3 meals that both us and our children could eat.
It was pretty amazing listening to Tom with how he had the idea for Babease, One evening whilst at a friends house who were feeding their child at the time, out of interest he tried some and was surprised at how bad it tasted but was further surprised how his friend knew it tasted disgusting and still fed it to their child. He then took it upon himself to try some recipes at home and gave them to his friend who’s child loved them. The rest is history! He focused on using vegetables with real taste and flavours with very little sugar but a high nutritional value and him and his team deserve all the recognition they are getting!
Amelia first took to these really well but I fear once we started using some of the others that did contain fruit she soon stopped enjoying these and they would often get wasted. Even though we aren’t using Babease pouches anymore, I’m certainly more aware of Amelia’s palette and am trying to introduce lots of flavours and textures whilst shes at this early stage of weaning.
After Amelia stopped having the Babease pouches, it was lucky Piccollo had sent us over some of their pouches to try, and it was exactly what we were looking for, A wide range of fruit and vegetables in a pouch that also encouraged adding flavour with a “pinch of cinnamon” here and a “hint of vanilla” there. We were sent only the pouches that were free from milk suitable for Amelia’s first stage of weaning, and we were sent the following which are lactose free baby pouches:
(Top) Apple and apricot with a pinch of cinnamon / Banana, blueberry and apple with a hint of vanilla / Spring greens pear and apple with a hint of mint. (Bottom) Raspberry and apple with soaked oats / Sweet potato beetroot, apple and pear / Banana, Strawberry & Peach with a hint of mint and lastly Squash, red pepper, chickpea and apple with a hint of rosemary and we haven’t come across a Piccolo pouch we haven’t devoured yet!
As well as Piccolo pouches, we have been loving and living for the Aldi Mamia Pouches. Whilst they only have a few Amelia can have, at 59p per pouch that’s near enough half price compared to most and certainly helps saves the pennies! We’ve been having the bananas and apples / apples and strawberries / apple, sweet potato, butternut squash and blueberry / mango, apple and banana. These ones are certainly runnier than the piccolo ones but are equally as tasty. When teething strikes up again, I also plan on putting some of these into our Nuby Garden Fresh Fruitsicles to make little lollies for her to have which I think will be nice for her gums!
For breakfast we have been absolutely loving the Organix porridge mixes, you get about 10 meals out of 1 box and are able to add your own milk to the porridge mix and that works out perfectly for us and our special milk. So far we’ve tried the strawberry and banana porridge which are both a hit, we’ve recently tried the 7+ month (stage 2) blueberry one which has a bit more texture , the first 2/3 feeds she gagged a bit so instead of the 3/6 ratio of organix and milk, I used a bit more of her milk to make it go down a little easier and that seems to of helped as she now doesn’t gag and happily opens her mouth for the next mouthful which Is a good sign for her in wanting it.
Lastly, aside a good ole fashioned rich tea finger biscuit, we discovered these wafers from Kiddylicious in banana and blueberry flavor and they literally look like mini polystyrene surfboards with a hint of colour and a hint of taste and they are perfect as a mini snack for her whilst out and about. I simply snap them in half to create 2 long sticks and she is quite happy to take half and gnaw away on it till it disintegrates in her mouth. It’s certainly a ” just give mummy 5 minutes to finish her lunch and then we’ll feed you” snack as it always keeps her somewhat entertained and I love that it encourages her to hold it and take it to her mouth building up those skills. I think after a few more weeks I’ll be doing the same with steamed carrot batons, broccoli and cucumber sticks with the rind removed and also try melon fingers and other fruit in our Nuby Nibbler .
There are so many places you can get little bowls, spoons and bibs from, and they will generally all do the same thing and be the same size, but these are the bits we started with, some we haven’t used yet and some I’m having to wash up to use again twice a day because they are so bloomin’ fanstastic!
Vital Baby and Nuby (who we’re brand ambassadors for) both sent us amazing packages of goodies to help with our weaning journey and we already have some favourites! I absolutely Love the Warm-a-bowl from Vital Baby which has become a daily staple, sometimes even a twice daily depending on whats for dinner! Being able to add hot water to under the bowl to heat the food in it is genius and has been great for when we have porridge each morning. I find by the time I’ve made it and let it sit for 5 minutes to thicken, the boiling water has kept the bowl hot and the food warm, though sometimes if pressed for time we don’t add the water and it’s still a beautiful pink bowl so it’s a winner for us. If it’s not that bowl then it’s one of the Nuby Large Bowls and Lids from our set which are great too! We are using one for our dried porridge in the draw, and I’ll use it to have our porridge out of too, or put some biscuits in to take out with us. Its such a perfect size and with it having a lid too, it’s great to take out with us, I’ll be getting more of these!
With spoons, our first ones were the Nuby Hot Safe Spoons and I felt a lot more at ease when feeding Amelia warmer meals using these spoons. The spoon is a unique shape for comfort of feeding, however I must say the Vital Baby Soft Tip Weaning Spoons are our favourite, I love the bright colours and they always catch Amelia’s attention if she’s zoned out looking to the side and I motion the spoon in an airplane fashion to her mouth, she soon realised these colourful spoons are bringing her some yummy food and opens up!
Since moving Amelia into her new Chicco Polly Progress highchair, it makes it a lot easier for her to grab the bowls so when dinner time comes and we are all at the table, we’ve started giving her bits of what we are having, and using the Nuby SureGrip Miracle Plate which is perfect as she’s in that phase where she literally wants to grab everything to go into her mouth, this ensures at least the plate stays put! The same goes for when we are out and about and we use our Vital Baby Unbelievabowl which is a bowl with a click on suction cup so you can take it anywhere and lock it in place! We tried our Nuby Clik It Designer Grip N’ Sip No Spill Cup but I don’t think we’re ready for that yet. We are however almost ready to use the Nuby No More Mess Trap-A-Snack which has been perfect to put fruit in or her biscuits and with her arms flailing around trying to put stuff in her mouth, the lid prevents everything from falling out!
Lastly, and I have saved the best till last, we were sent the Vital Baby 2 in 1 Steam and Blend which thankfully I didn’t break ( if you follow my instagram stories will know we had a slight melting problem when I almost burnt it with a lamp at 3am! ) but I took a chance and tried it out and thankfully, it still works and I’ve been having so much fun making our own purees from scratch. Buying the pouches can be very expensive, even if they are on offer or the mamia ones, it soon adds up so being armed with this, I feel I can not only use it for our meals but I can batch cook purees for Amelia, knowing what is going into them and saving money at the same time. We’ve been using the Vital Baby Removable Twist ‘n’ Lock Freezer Pods and tray to put food in and take out each day to defrost when trying them. They are the perfect size for 1 portion at the moment and there is no risk of spillage or any getting lost behind my stack of bacon in the freezer!
It’s a bit trial and error and I’ve been doing lots of reading on recipes and I plan on doing a post dedicated to the 2 in 1 steam and blend and some recipes!
At the moment we’re using the Nuby Catch All Converter Bib and the Boots own brand bibs ( we have it in this garish green and bright pink ) and they are both great, though we’ve been reaching for the Boots own brand ones a bit more, they are both flexible and wipe clean, however the Nuby one sees to always rub up under her chin with how it sits and she then gets food all on it which then rubs on her where as the boots one doesn’t ( she just brings it to her mouth and eats the silicone bib haha ) though usually she’s pretty good and would be fine with just a dribble bib, it’s only if we give her a biscuit or a new puree we’ve made it might not all get consumed so she gets it all over her chops!
So this is everything we’ve been using and loving on our weaning journey at the moment!! We’ve still only really just begun and I can’t wait to carry on and try more recipes and introduce more textures!