A few days ago, we decided that Dorothy met all of the criteria to start solids using the baby-led weaning approach (the same approach we used with Valerie), but we wanted to wait until her cough improved first, to minimize the risk of choking. I think we must have said this out loud in front of her, because her cough went away pretty much as soon as the words left my mouth. "What, I can have solid food if I just stop coughing? Sure thing!"
So, at dinner tonight, PopPop was baking a sweet potato for Granddad, and he threw an extra one in for Dorothy, just in case. Normally, I bake sweet potatoes in fry shapes for BLW, but I wasn't making dinner tonight, and I didn't want to make extra work for anyone else, so it just got baked normally along with the other potatoes. I did my best to cut the sweet potato into fry shapes after it was baked, but I mostly ended up with squishy blobs. (Note to anyone considering doing BLW: Take the extra time to cut the potato up before baking. It's worth the effort.)
Dorothy wasn't sure what to make of it at first.
"Um, Mom, Dad put food in front of me. Aren't you going to take it away and get mad at him?"
Valerie was especially concerned. She reminded us that Dorothy is a baby, and she can only have nursies. We told her that Dorothy is getting bigger and she can now have sweet potatoes AND nursies. No, she can't have your chocolate milk, she can ONLY have sweet potatoes and nursies right now.
Dorothy finally figured out that she was allowed to put this stuff in her mouth. She poked at it a bit, then got a big gob on her thumb.
"Aha, thumb! I know how to put you in my mouth! I will coat you in tasty orange stuff, then suck on you!"
"You are especially tasty, today, thumb."
Then she grabbed a fistful, and ate everything that she could squeeze out between her fingers.
Then she did it again.
Judging by the amount I cleaned up after she was done, I think she ate almost half of a small sweet potato. Tomorrow's diapers should be fun!
Next, I think we'll try broccoli. It has nice, little, built-in handles. And the next time we do sweet potato, I will make it into proper BLW fry-shapes.
I thought I would be more sad or excited about this milestone, but honestly, it just feels normal. She was ready, we gave her food, and she ate it. It was the most natural thing in the world. I almost forgot to take pictures. (Obviously, I remedied that near-oversight.)