As I hinted Monday, I’ve been struggling a little lately when it comes to the blog. I think part of the reason for that is I hesitate to post frequently about my life with Bonnie, because I don’t want to cause any of you pain. I know that, when you are walking through infertility, it can be so hard to watch other experiencing life with their babies. I know that when you come to my little corner of the world-wide web, you may not want to see pictures of my baby. You may not want to hear about my mothering moments. You may not care about what she eats, how often she nurses, or how many hours she sleeps at night.
But that is my life right now. My days are spent at home. I am with her all day, every day. If I can’t share that part of my life here, then there’s little else for me to share. I shared some of my most intimate moments and thoughts when we were trying to conceive, and going through fertility treatments. I’ve shared thoughts on physical intimacy while TTC, my thoughts on going through infertility in my twenties, every detail of our IVF experience, my thoughts on pregnancy after infertility, and my thoughts on motherhood after infertility. It would be a shame not to celebrate the day-to-day of motherhood, the little milestones and memories that we make with Bonnie. Those things take up so much space in my heart, and I want them to have a space on the blog as well.
Since sharing this picture on my personal Facebook page last week, I’ve been asked several questions about recently is Bonnie’s meals: When does she eat? How often? And what?
Bonnie recently transitioned to a new, bigger girl schedule. This means that she has dropped one nap, and is down to two naps a day. It also means she is eating a lot more food, and nursing a little less.
- 6:30/7am- Nurse
- 7:30/8am- Breakfast
- 9am- Nurse and then nap
- 10/10:30am- Snack
- 12pm- Lunch
- 1pm- Nurse and then nap
- 2:30/3pm- Snack
- 5pm- Dinner
- 6:30pm- Nurse and then bed
*I nurse Bonnie on demand, within reason, so there are days when she will nurse more than what’s indicated above.
Bonnie does not eat grains, and with the exception of goat cheese, she does not eat dairy either. Her diet consists of whole foods that are easy to prepare. She eats a lot of what Andrew and I eat, which means her meals are simple and wholesome. The most common foods we offer Bonnie are:
- Fresh fruit. Her favorites are grapes, apples, and any kind of berry. She also likes bananas.
- Steamed or roasted veggies (she prefers her veggies roasted in olive oil rather than steamed.) Some favorites are green beans, asparagus, sweet potato, and any kind of squash.
- Mild guacamole. This is one of her favorites!
- Scrambled eggs.
- Organic chicken or ground deer meat.
- Almond butter, flaxseed, chia seed (either in the form of a mini protein bite or in a “smoothie.”)
- Healthy fats like olive oil, coconut oil, and grass-fed butter.
*We occasionally offer Bonnie muffins, stuffed with fruits or veggies. I think she’ll eat almost anything that comes in muffin form!
*As special treats, Bonnie loves dates and prunes. When she is ever constipated, we will put chopped prunes into her power bites (recipe coming soon) and she will have a dirty diaper a few hours later.
At mealtime, we will offer Bonnie 3 or 4 of the items listed above, and at snack time we will offer her 2 or 3. For instance, here is what Bonnie ate yesterday:
- One banana muffin (I’ll share the recipe soon)
- One scrambled egg
- Brussels sprouts
- Pea, pear, and spinach puree (We use Plum Organics, Stage 1 & 2. I also have frozen homemade purees that we use occasionally, but she prefers the Plum Organics pouches.)
- 2 power bites (almond butter, prunes, flaxseed, unsweetened coconut)
- Leftover homemade soup (containing ground deer, green beans, sweet potato, cabbage, okra, squash)
- Goat cheese
- Roasted zucchini
- 2 power bites
- Organic, grilled chicken (no seasonings)
- 1 banana muffin
- Roasted zucchini
Because we are doing baby-led weaning, we do not necessarily offer purees on a regular basis, and we did not start her out with purees. They are just a special treat that we give her occasionally. They are especially easy if we are out and about and don’t have a good place to sit down and let her feed herself.
One of the newer things we’ve been doing is letting Bonnie have a smoothie instead of a puree. A smoothie is always a fruit, a healthy fat, and a leafy green, blended with either water or breast milk. Some flavor combo ideas are:
- Dates, chia seeds, cinnamon, spinach, breast milk
- Apple, dates, kale, almond butter, water
- Raspberries, avocado, dates, water
We give Bonnie a sippy cup of water with every meal and snack she has. Moms on Call recommends giving a sippy cup of breast milk (or formula) instead, but Bonnie won’t go near her cup if it has anything in it other than water. I nurse Bonnie before both of her naps to compensate for the milk she is not getting when she eats. (Moms on Call has been my lifeline as a first-time mom, and I cannot recommend the books, videos, and schedules highly enough.)
Bonnie prefers feeding herself to being fed, so aside from the purees, we let her feed herself, which is fun, but so messy. (Sometimes we even let Bonnie feed herself the purees, because we are crazy and we like having various fruits and veggies smeared all over our floors, chairs, and walls.) There are days when she eats a lot, and days when she plays with her food more than she eats it. We don’t force it. If she is hungry and eats well, that’s great, but if she isn’t hungry, that’s fine too. I’d guess that about 50% of what we give her actually gets into her belly, give or take.
When Bonnie began nursing less, I initially felt a sense of loss, but it is so fun to watch her experiment with new foods, and learn to feed herself. It is such a natural progression, and although I still cherish our nursing sessions, I am so happy that she is enjoying real foods now too. I look forward to the next many years with her, and teaching her to enjoy and appreciate wholesome, unprocessed, healing foods.
*If you are considering baby-led weaning for your little one, but need a bit of inspiration, you might want to check out this blog post. It helped me a lot!