Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Bon appetit

Nathan has always been a healthy eater.

This is him at 8 months, loving on a piece of asparagus sauteed with garlic.

He will eat any type of fruit, nearly every vegetable we offer him, and he actually prefers fish over meat. That's not to say sometimes each bite requires some type of negotiation, but at the end of the day I sleep well knowing he is eating healthy, home cooked meals (for the most part.) I love to cook and I enjoy preparing dinner so it's a win-win for me.

Shortly after Ryan was born though, his meals became a bit more simple. Chicken breasts baked in the oven were replaced with chicken nuggets zapped in the microwave. Steamed salmon turned into boiled hot dogs. Slow cooked chili became fast made sandwiches. The adjustment from one child to two was difficult for me and I just couldn't find the time or energy to chop, saute, or even stir! Most nights I would nurse Ryan, then make Nathan the fastest, easiest meal I could prepare, and finally after both kids were in bed, I would get around to making myself something to eat.

Ryan started eating pureed foods at 6 months and I tried to make as much of his food myself as possible. Every night I was preparing three different meals and no matter how easy they were individually, together they required a lot of time and work. This is when I started to feel like a short order cook and to save time, started using more store bought baby food and less homemade. Then around 8 months we introduced finger foods. This was a game changer. I could sit Ryan down with some chunks of avocado and steamed veggies and he could feed himself while I cooked dinner for myself and Nathan. I was suddenly down from 3 meals to 2. Things were looking up.

First bite of real "food", baby cereal

Pretty sure he liked it!
Now, at 9 months, he basically eats whatever we eat and I can finally just prepare one meal that everyone can eat together. Tonight I made tilapia, sweet potatoes and mixed vegetables. All 3 of us ate together and all 3 of us cleaned our plates. No individual meal prep, no spoon feeding a baby with one hand while trying to feed myself with the other hand.  

Black bean sweet potato quesadilla was a keeper
One of Ryan's favorite finger foods is pizza crust!
Grilled cheese and fruit cup, a "fast food" favorite
What baby doesn't love Cheerios?
Vegetable quiche for breakfast
Dinner is even easier when you let your kid do the cooking!

Sitting at the table, enjoying a family meal together, I was enjoying the fact that the older Ryan gets, the easier things become. That is until Nathan asked if Ryan could have a glass of milk too and I reminded him that babies don't drink milk from the fridge until they turn 1. And just like that it hit me that Ryan will be 1 in less than 3 months and suddenly I wanted to slow things down as much as possible!!

No comments:

Post a Comment