Monday, September 7, 2009

I don't always follow directions exactly as written. If a recipe calls for a teaspoon of vanilla, I may add a little more or a little less. If instructions are to add eight cups of water, I may add six, eight or even nine. If my spring flowers require watering twice a day, some days it will happen and others day it won't. However, when it comes to feeding Morgan Kate I follow directions to a "T". I would even consider myself a little obsessive at times.

When we first brought MK home we were to feed her every three hours and "x" amount of ounces. Because of her extreme low birth weight we weren't allowed to let her sleep or tell us when she might be hungry. So I constantly watched the clock. When three hours passed I fed her, I knew how much she was eating and I even recorded how much she ate. At the end of the day I could even tell you how many calories she consumed and I was supposed to know. I realize this totally goes against Babywise and many, many other books. But I have also come to realize that aliens must have written more than half of the baby books out there. That's probably another reason why I just couldn't handle nursing - I never knew how much she was getting and then I would start to freak. As MK has gotten older she now goes 4-6 hours between feedings. But I still watch the clock and I still add up all the calories in my head to ensure that she is eating enough to grow adequately. I have gotten a little better at letting her tell me when she's hungry, but I still start to get knots if it's been longer and she doesn't seem hungry or if she doesn't take all of her bottle. My point here is that when Dr. G told us how often and how much to feed MK I followed her directions precisely and even appreciated that I had something to go by.

That leads me to my problem. I can completely and totally handle the bottle stuff. I can watch the clock and remember how many ounces she has taken. But what I don't understand at all is baby food or just feeding your baby food in general. I don't know how much she is supposed to eat. I don't know how often I should offer her snacks versus meals. And just in case you haven't noticed, baby food has minimal calories and with this baby we need calorie rich food. I seriously need directions. Clear, simple and concise directions because this baby food/table food thing is so very confusing for me. So maybe some of you out there can help me...

Little background info before my questions:
MK is still taking four bottles of formula a day. MK has been eating baby food two to three times a day for quite some time now. Recently however that has changed. Now that she can feed herself she prefers to do that and doesn't want us to feed her. So I am now trying my best to find any types of food that she can feed herself. Also, I know this sounds ridiculous but Travis and I eat a lot of foods that have added spices or things that she's just not quite ready for yet, so I find myself fixing our meals and then fixing her stuff. I don't have a problem preparing both, but just need some ideas because there are many times where I can't just feed her off of my plate.

1. How many times a day do most one year olds eat food? (I realize all children are different.)
2. What are some quick and easy finger foods that you especially like? (Veggies, fruits and especially meats)
3. Do you have any creative ways to prepare food that you can use for a few days at a time?
4. What kind of schedule do you have for feedings? (Example - 8am:bottle, 9am-food, 1pm bottle, 2pm food)

Oh, and we are supposed to start adding whole milk. One, she doesn't seem to like the milk and two, she hasn't quite figured out the whole sippy cup thing.
1. Should I supplement a milk bottle for one of her formula bottles or should the milk be in addition to the formula? Just curious as to what others do.

Wow. I have more questions than I even realized. HELP!


Lorena Carrillo de Bianchi said...

I have issues with her feeding too and still haven't figured out a lot of things.

Her schedule is:

7am- breakfast (yogurt, cereal or egg)
9am- Bottle (whole milk with cereal or Incaparina)
11am- Snack (fruit)
1pm- Lunch (what we made for ourselves, spices included)
3pm- Bottle (whole milk with cereal or incaparina)
5:30pm- Dinner (egg, cereal, turkey sausage or veggies)
7:30pm - Bottle (whole milk with cereal) right before going to bed!

She doesn't always eat that well but I try not to freak out. The Incaparina has helped a lot, she didn't like at first but now she has no problem with it.

Here is an article on it, sorry, it's in spanish but maybe someone can translate it for you.

Sorry I can't help more but this whole feeding thing is still quite a mystery to me too.

Good luck! =)

.:liza:. said...

For the milk, she'll probably transition easier if you mix formula & whole milk for a bit first. Do like 1 oz milk, formula for the rest. Up it an oz or so every couple days. She'll get the taste little by little & ease into it.
Sippy cups....ugh. I am so sick of bottles. (my youngest is only 9 months, so he's not ready to be totally off bottles, but I sure am!) This one though... until she's much older (like closer to 2 yrs old up) bottles are going to really harm her. Offer her one feeding per day in a sippy cup & bump it up little by little. You can always pour whatever she doesn't drink back into a bottle so she'll finish it off and you won't have to worry about her not getting enough.

There's really good info on the milk & cup weaning here:

For the food, I can't offer much help there. My oldest is 9 year old and there's no way I can remember that far back. :)
She should be OK with pretty much all spices now. Obviously not really spicy stuff and as little salt as possible. When I cook a meal that the little one can eat also, I don't just salt it until after I pull his portion out.

It's complicated now, but it gets easier. Within another 6 months or so, she'll be eating everything you eat. :)

Elizabeth Graham said...

Juliana (turned 1 in July) eats three meals a day- breakfast (8:00), lunch(12/1:00), and supper(6:30). We also occasionally give her a snack after she wakes up from her afternoon nap(3:30). Juliana has never liked being fed so we have been creative with the finger foods. We use to buy the little gerber hotdogs, and the gerber diced apples and carrots. She also loves the pasta pickups (cut in half at first), steamed carrots cut up small, avacado rolled in finely crushed cereal, eggs, bananas rolled in crushed cereal (cheerios), cheerios in general, green peas, beans (good source of protein), enriched macaroni wheels (the ones that have the added protein), etc... We stopped buying the gerber veggies that you can pick up and we buy a can of veg-all and they love that. Add butter to everything. Also when Juliana wasnt picking up weight, we added rice cereal to her baby food.

As for the milk- if you normally give her 6 oz of formula, try mixing 4 oz of formula and then adding 2 oz of warm milk (or even less) and gradually add more. We had trouble with Noah drinking whole milk and so we slowly added more and more of it to his bottle until he could get use to it.

As far as the bottle- keep offering her a sippy cup. She will eventually get the hang of it. And if she doesnt anytime soon, then dont sweat it. I have a few friends that let their babies have their bottle way past the 1 year mark and they finally made the transition just fine. Maybe give her a sippy with a little formula in it during the day to experiment with. Good luck!!

Whitnie said...

We skipped the sippy cup phase for the most part and went from the bottle straight to a cup with a straw. My Morgan's "sippy" cups are the ones with straws built in, too. When I first switched her to whole milk from formula I had to heat it because she didn't like it cold. Then gradually I reduced the heating time until we worked our way up to cold milk.

A lifesaver for us in the meat category is Gerber chicken sticks. Also, string cheese sticks are great for protein, too (of course cut up into bite size pieces).

I was freaked out, too, when I started having to feed my child "real" food but over time we just fell into a schedule that worked for us. Sometimes if I'm unsure of portion size I have a container that one of the Gerber Graduate meals comes in and I fill it up with food to get an idea of how much Morgan should eat. It may not be the best way to do it but it makes me feel better. :-)

Hope this helps!

Newman Family said...

I started to transition Brandon to whole milk after his one year appointment when the pediatrician told me I could. I started by giving him one bottle of whole milk a day and the remaining bottles were formula (he also has 4 bottles a day). Once I saw he was handling one bottle of whole milk a day with no problems I added a second bottle of whole milk so he was getting 2 whole milk and 2 formula. Then I added a 3rd and then a 4th until he was only drinking whole milk. He still gets four bottles a day but now he only gets whole milk. Unlike formula the pediatrician said babies shouldn't have more than 26 ounces of whole milk a day and that yogurt counts towards that. He usually has about 20 ounces a day of whole milk and a 4 ounce yogurt. He also doesn't drink out of a sippy cup. I keep trying to give it to him but he chews on it like it is a teething ring.

His schedule is:
6:30 bottle (whole milk)
8:30 breakfast- french toast stick, pancakes, or waffles cut up or cheerios, baby cereal, and a fruit (usually still a baby food jar or banana cut into pieces)
10:30 bottle (whole milk)
12:30 lunch- yogurt and a fruit (usually banana) and some puffs
2:30 bottle (whole milk)
3:30 snack- graham crackers or puffs
5:30 dinner (pasta, hot dog, pizza, turkey meatball, grilled cheese, or what we are having cut up) or a stage 3 baby food jar
7:00-7:30 bottle (whole milk) before going to bed

I just bought strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries to cut up for him to start trying since he enjoys feeding himself

Newman Family said...

I also give Brandon chicken nuggets cut up for dinner.

THE SPIVEY"S said...

I wish I could help with some of these questions but I can't. We just give Christian what ever it is that we are eating or what I have cooked/heated up for beans, lima beans, corn, mashed potatos, peaches, apples, etc. I am sorry I am not much of a help. However, maybe I can help with the sippy cup. Christian had a hard time with that as well but we found a sipp cup that has a plastic/flexible straw and he loves it. If you have not tried that kind I recommend it but you are right...they are all different.

Paula71 said...

1. How many times a day do most one year olds eat food? 3 meals and 2 snacks.
2. What are some quick and easy finger foods that you especially like? Gerber Graduates meat sticks(turkey,chicken)Cooked diced carrots, canned pears, cooked green beans and motts applesauce
3. Do you have any creative ways to prepare food that you can use for a few days at a time? Most food will keep in the fridge. If you would eat it from the fridge after 2 days she can too.
4. What kind of schedule do you have for feedings?
9:30-Bottle 1/2 formula 1/2 milk
11:30-12:00 Lunch
1:00-bottle 1/2&1/2
3:00-3:30 Snack and cup 1/2&1/2
7:30-Bottle 1/2 & 1/2
anytime in the night she wakes either let her cry it out or if she needs more calories give her a 1/2 & 1/2 bottle
The more she eats during the day the more/better she will sleep at night. Offer cup at each meal and snack. I work with infants (17 years ) and this is what we find used the most with parents if you want to hop over to my blog and e-mail me and I will give you more ideas

Jason and Talyse Burkett said...

Ok, I don't have one-year-olds (yet), but here's a tip I've picked up from watching my friends and family.

Sippy cup - I've heard that if you always give the child the bottle, but let them hold their own sippy cup, they start to prefer the sippy cup, especially if they are as independent as MK seems.

BTW...The babywise principles are simply to feed babies on a schedule, with mealtime, playtime and then naptime, in that order, which I think you've done beautifully, especially since she sleeps through the night so well!

I'm the same way with following instructions with mine! I think our pediatrician probably just loves us!