Sunday, January 23, 2011

All about the baby! Part 1

Our girls have gone to Melbourne for a week, so I’m going to use my time wisely, stocking the freezer with food for the new school year and spending one on one time with my boy, Wilco – Bliss!
I’ll be making him delicious and nutritious food, breakfast, lunch and dinner.
This is for the mum’s out there with babies 6 months – 2 years.  I will break it up into 2 parts so there is not too much info in one hit.

Jemima 11 months old   

Part 1: Learning as we go.
When I first started feeding my kids solids it was, of course, a learning process and if only I new what I know today, there would be things I wouldn’t have done. Jemima always liked food – once I could get her away from my breast!


Frank 4 months old

She started eating properly from about 12 months, but Frank well she has always been tricky.  She was my earliest one to wean (at 12 months) and she wouldn’t eat much, just my homemade stock and her milky, milky. But Wilco was and still is a joy to feed.
When he was born I decided that I wanted to solely breast feed him for the first 8 months of his life. Because my other kids did not want a bar of food I just assumed he would be the same, ah - no!


He was always a good feeder and I had stacks of milk, due to him always wanting the breast, so at 5 months I was surprised that he was showing such an interest in eating. It started with him chewing whilst we were eating and then the grabbing started, he wanted food and the sooner the better. So reluctantly I had to give up my dream of only breast milk and comply once again with my children’s demands.

Wilco 2 weeks old
Frank 8 weeks old

Let me consult Wilco’s diary on what I fed him first………I fed him at 5 months and 2 weeks and he was ready. He devoured the stewed pear that I made for him first, like he’d been eating all his small life, and by my notes it seems he went from strength to strength day by day, and exactly one week later he was on 3 meals a day.
Breakfast was always fruit to start and only sometimes with brown rice cereal and then later yogurt (always check the label and get the one, that is made from whole milk not powders) cow’s, sheep’s or goat.
I gave him all kinds of fruit, whatever was in season at the time. Most of it was raw and I would puree it – like mango, banana, strawberries, blueberries. I actually spent a small fortune on blueberries once Wilco could eat them (cut in half – for safety).
They are pretty much the best things for anyone, so when in season I practically buy my local organic shop out of stock. And that being the case Wilco poohed blueberries for the rest of the blueberry season, pitch black sweet smelling poo! And as for the strawberries I know the books say not to give them to your kids until they are 12 months old, but I forgot – and even though my Frank did have an allergy to strawberries for the first 2 years of her life (not very severe I might add, just red cheeks and chin) I still fed them to him and he was fine.

The girls meeting their brother for the first time
It’s funny how with the first baby we’re all so very careful with everything and we get so stressed about the littlest of things, then the second one comes along and its not so scary and we don’t worry about things as much and then the third one arrives and we’re like - whatever. I figure as long as its early enough in the day and someone else is around (just in case you need to rush them to the hospital) I will pretty much try anything on him.
And touch wood he’s been fine so far!

Lunch and dinner were always green, no matter what I made, Cavalo Nero, parsley, broccoli and garlic always went in – hence my kids do not freak when they see something green because it’s always been on their plate and they’ve always known it’s a non-negotiable - they have to eat their vegies no matter what!

Wilco 3 months
May I just add I am not a breakfast person, so the majority of these are when Max is feeding the kids.

Breakfasts idea’s:
Fresh fruit purred or depending what season your baby’s born stewed fruit. A little tip if your baby is constipated add a few organic prunes (pitted of course) to the stewed fruit or stew prunes separately and add them cold to fresh fruit or even use some of the cooking liquid that you stewed them in and put it in a bottle with filtered water. Guaranteed to get their little bowels moving!
With yogurt –use only whole milk and check your label for added milk powders, stay away if they have them added or use sheep’s milk yogurt or goat’s milk yogurt.
Brown rice cereal, Quinoa, Amaranth
9 months and beyond;
Porridge with stewed fruit, baked fruit or fresh fruit
Teeny weenie pikelets with stewed fruit or fresh fruit (I do these ones)
Fruit salad – cut up really small
Brown rice pudding (one of mine too)
Quinoa porridge
Egg and toast
Pancakes / crepes (Max is the master)

Muffins (me)
French toast

Lunch idea’s:
Pureed vegies always green
Avocado with yogurt
9 months and beyond;
Half avocado – Wilco’s favourite
Quinoa with vegies
Qunioa with green vegies
Amaranth with chicken and vegies
Pesto – omelette, pasta, on toast
Cut up vegies, cheese and egg

Dinner idea's:
Pureed vegies - try them on everything.
9 months and beyond:
Chicken soup with carrot and pasta
Chicken stock brown rice with mixed vegies
Absorption method with stock and pasta + vegies
Mini schnitzel chicken or fish fingers
Broccoli pasta with our without pesto
Mixed vegie soup with brown rice

Mima, so happy to have a brother
Pretty much whatever you eat, you can improvise and make something for the small person in your house.
Just remember whatever you feed them when they’re little will set them up for life. This is when they grow the most and you need to make sure whatever passes they’re lips is of the best quality,Organic and pesticide free.
Even if it means buying whatever is in season and cooking a lot of it and freezing it – do it. I buy the smallest glass Pyrex containers and keep sauce for pasta, stock, Bolognese, any leftover stew ready for a quick baby meal – lunch or dinner.
And remember never add salt to your baby’s food – only after 12 months. If they are 8 months old you can season with good quality Parmesan cheese.
Try and use brown rice pasta to start and slowly introduce wheat after 12 months.
Always use unhomogenized cow's milk or goats milk, you will find that milk allergies don’t exist if your dairy is as unadulterated as possible.

Wilco's first bath - 2 hours old

In part 2, which I’ll post tomorrow there’ll be 5 recipes to feed your baby.

©Michelle Schoeps 2013
All photos taken by Michelle Schoeps and Max Doyle


  1. Hello Michelle,
    Ive got an 8 month old who just loves EATING! So this post has been great for ideas. I live in Paris and it's ridiculous how close-minded pediatricians are here regarding the variety of foods they propose for starting baby on solids- or should I say the number of foods they think should be avoided....Ive been told not to give my baby 'exotic fruits' including mangoes, pineapples, papaya etc on the pretext that they create allergies....
    At first, my baby stuck her tongue out a bit when she started on solids and when I told friends I was giving her sweet potato purée they said I should stop giving it to her as it was 'exotic'....
    So anything that grows outside of the French landscape is considered exotic here-and of course French babies are encouraged to eat 'Petite Suisse' cheeses, loaded with sugar, from 6 months!!
    Anyway, keep the baby recipes coming- youv'e got an avid fan.

  2. I found after my second child I stopped listening to what 'baby experts had to say' personally I feel they have no idea, a mother always knows what's best for their own baby. With my eldest I fed her many things I regret - the main one 'Soy milk' makes my skin crawl (how could I have not known how bad it is for you). With my second I experimented more and was a better cook so she had an extremely varied diet (and is now the fussiest of all my kids) and with Wilco I had all the info and he had everything. I started off introducing fruit and veg one by one (that lasted a week) then it was all on - he lived on a blended mixture of strawberries, blueberries, mango, pear, apple and for savoury any deep green veggies or purple ones pureed with pumpkin and garlic and then later cooked with different bone stocks. Nothing Wilco ate was processed at all - he is the healthiest kid EVER! Not kidding (touch wood), I made other choices a lot of people wouldn't necessarily agree with and I'm so happy I did. I say try everything and anything as long as you've prepared it and it's organic or pesticide free and if your baby has an allergy you'll know pretty fast - stop feeding her that and then try it again a year later. Will try and do a follow up on babies soon - after all it's my favourite subject!