Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Inbetween days

My baby girl is weaning. She has two teeth and seems to be growing up so fast...

She has taken well to solid food and likes to feed herself. She sits at the table with us and gets on with it. She grins, joins in with mealtimes and likes it best when Daddy sits next to her!

She seems to be firmly into a routine:

7.30am - breakfast with Daddy
8.30am - milk
11.00am - fruit snack
midday - milk
12.30pm - solid lunch
3.00pm - milk
4.00pm - carb snack with Sister (after school)
6.00pm - dinner with the whole family
7.30pm - bedtime milk (after bath time)

Usually, she wakes in the night and I give her a quick feed to settle her back to sleep. Once or twice, though, she has slept right through for 12 hours! (...and I've woken up grossly engorged in a puddle of milk)

I know that she will still need milk for another few months and that I will miss breastfeeding when she stops but, at the same time, I am pleased that she is feeding from me less. It will ease her transition to nursery in just over one month's time if she can go four or five hours without milk. It also gives me more freedom during the day - we can attempt longer spells out of the house and I don't have to wear dedicated breastfeeding tops if I know I won't need to feed in public.

I'm enjoying my in-between baby, watching her develop from a newborn to a bouncing baby!

Saturday, 18 April 2015

30-day challenge

In an attempt to boost my creativity (in a long-term search for 'what I want to be when I grow up'), I've decided to undertake a series of 30-day challenges. The idea is to try some new things, step outside my comfort zone and see what I can learn.

My first challenge is to cook 30 new recipes in 30 days. Mostly, these are dinner recipes that we eat together as a family, which adds some complexity to the challenge: the recipes have to be appetising for a four-year-old, two adults and a baby. It's also stretching my abilities in the kitchen. I quite enjoy cooking and am technically competent but I don't have my husband's flair (well, he did work as a restaurant chef for a year...)

One week into the challenge and I'm feeling pleased with myself. We've tried seven new recipes, most of which have been well received - apart from our attempt at polenta chips, which failed abysmally (so we just ate it as soft polenta) and a chicken casserole that turned out as per the recipe but lacked depth of flavour. The baby's new favourite foods include lentils and meat, particularly chicken.

Alongside my challenge, my husband is attempting better bread-making. We've had a bread-maker machine for years and use it almost daily to make loaves for toast and sandwiches and to prepare dough for pizza. We also have a sourdough starter in the fridge, which is used weekly to make a loaf at the weekends. This week, my husband has dabbled with some artisan breads: a pesto-topped focaccia and a wholemeal cob were both delicious!

Next month's challenge will be to walk at least 30 minutes per day. Best foot forward!