So now that my sweet baby boy is 9 months old, I am taking maternity leave. It just wasn’t in the cards right away when he was born. His first months on earth were hectic. I finished school and have a job lined up, but I have a few months to enjoy with him before I start. Therefore, during this time, I am doing my best to make up for my Christmas tree being up until April. Like many twenty-something females, this usually entails spending way too much time on Pinterest, searching for all of the great things that I should be doing to earn a gold star in the mommy department. In case some of you haven’t jumped on that train, motherhood on Pinterest entails being a semi-professional photographer, an arts a craft guru, a design expert, and your own personal trainer, all while looking like a supermodel every day. It all looks pretty, but in reality, I feel like I deserve a medal for showering on a daily basis.
With that being said, I decided to start doing some simple things for my little boy that are good for him and that I enjoy. This week, I took the leap into making my own baby food. It isn’t nearly as scary as it sounds. I even unwrapped the pouch filling station that my mom got me for Christmas and started filling the freezer with my creations. Before you get started, there are a few things that you need to have on hand. First of all, a good blender is essential. I have a Ninja, but any high quality blender will do. Secondly, think about storage (unless you want to do all of this every few hours instead of catching up on that sleep that you lost when your sweet angel was up crying every two hours during the night). There are tons of options that can be kept in either the fridge or freezer with various carrying capacities. I chose to use a pouch system. The foods can be kept in the refrigerator up to 48 hours or in the freezer up to 2 months. Currently, I am using disposable pouches, but I may convert to a reusable line when we run out of these and take a more eco-friendly approach (I promise to recycle until then).
Now, for the best part, I am not going to give you any recipes. Look in your refrigerator and see what you have. What do you have on your counter top? Do you have a straggler fruit cocktail in the pantry? Taste it as you go, and if it isn’t good, add something that makes it taste better to you! I try to make things that I would eat myself.
For my first batch I used a lone banana from my fruit bowl, a few chunks of the fresh pineapple that I just finished cutting, a couple of fresh blueberries, and a couple handfuls of spinach. I happened to have all of these things in my refrigerator and literally just threw them in the blender and left it on for five minutes while I vacuumed the living room. Next, I did 2 sweet potatoes, a can of pear halves that had been in my pantry for months, and a few spoonfuls of unsweetened applesauce so that I could get rid of the jar cluttering the bottom shelf of my fridge. This was slightly more complicated, since the sweet potato had to be peeled, chopped, and boiled in water for about 15 minutes. Once that was soft, it went into the blender with the pears and applesauce and was left on for about five minutes while I unloaded the dishwasher. I loaded my mixtures into pouches, labeled and dated them, and stashed them in the freezer. After 30-45 minutes (including clean-up time, vacuuming, and dish duty) and a couple bucks worth of ingredients, I have a baker’s dozen of fresh fruit and veggie pouches, a strong desire to purge my freezer and see what I can come up with next, and approval that looks like this:
I may not have that bikini-ready body yet that I could get by following those five simple moves that I saw on Pinterest this morning, but I did make some yummy meals for my little man. Don’t let others’ experiences intimidate you. If I can do it, so can you. Even if you didn’t start making your own food from the beginning, you can start now! Put on some re-runs, get in there, and let the creative juices (and purees) flow. Good luck mamas!
P.S. Check out our Ju-Ju-Be reversible bibs with magnetic closures and pockets for catching any messes or mishaps! They are very cute and functional (plus they come in a great carrying pouch, which is perfect for the diaper bag!)