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Saturday, January 09, 2010

My Porridge Diary

Babies from birth to 6 months old are generally very fuss-free creatures.

There are very standard reasons why they cry – Mostly either hungry or has a wet diaper. As long as the baby is not sick, the mum just needs to feed on a regular interval of 2 to 3 hours and change the diapers. Very simple actually.

However, as the baby grows, the degree of fuss-freeness decreases. Let me illustrate with a graphical representation of my observations:

image

The baby is basically fuss free till about 6 months old, thereafter more attention needs to be given to the baby because he'/she becomes a lot more alert and aware of the surroundings. It’s also now that baby’s character and personality becomes more obvious, and tantrum-throwing occurs at times.

The sharp increase in the degree of fussiness at 6 months is generally caused by this event known as ‘Starting on semi-solids’.

To some, it may be a fun and very enriching experience. To others, it’s difficult and problematic.

For Joey, her transition from milk-only diet to semi-solids was a very smooth one. She took to porridge like fish to water. It was like she was born for a time such as that (time for porridge-eating). She would gobble up every mouthful delightfully and would even scream when the next spoonful came too late. Mind you, the porridge she ate was just slightly softer than what the adults eat. Porridge time was fun time for her and for us.

I wish i could say the same for Jayne.

In the first place, she didn’t like cereals. Feeding her cereals was like trying to murder her. She would shut her mouth real tight, wince and whine and eventually cry, just so that we would stop feeding her cereals. On good days, she would finish up her cereals but not without lots of persuasion.

And so, I thought maybe she didn’t like cereals. I decided to start her on porridge (Who knows? Maybe she’s a very oriental girl who only likes chinese food?).

From Tue to Fri last week, I made porridge for her. Everyday was a disaster – Not the eating, but the cooking. =(

Maybe I forgot how to cook soft porridge. Or maybe Joey’s throat was just bigger, and so she could swallow bigger lumps of porridge. But for Jayne, the porridge I cooked was too lumpy and too big-grained. The caregivers at the office nursery advised me and told me how to cook good and suitable porridge so that Baby Jayne can swallow and there’s no danger of choking.

I had to blend the rice grains so that each grain is shorter and thus will cook faster.

7Jan 003

The mini slow cooker makes its entrance again after it retired when Joey left the nursery to start school.

7Jan 005

These are the first 2 ingredients I minced and froze for use.

Carrots

7Jan 002

Cauliflowers

7Jan 001

The Porridge Diary

On Tue, I cooked white rice in it from 1030pm to the next morning 7am, and the porridge was quite soft but you can still see the grains. I think I added in too much dried oysters (I grinded the oysters into near-powdery form), so the porridge might be too saltish for Jayne. As she was eating saltish food for the first time, she was obviously not used to it. She ate 10 teaspoonfuls and refused to eat anymore.

On Wed, I used brown rice instead, and cooked in the slow cooker from 9pm to the next morning 7am. This version porridge was worse because brown rice is tougher and would require more time to soften. Too lumpy, so Baby Jayne didn’t eat at all.

On Thurs, I used white rice again, and cooked from 8pm to the next morning 7am. This time round, the porridge was too watery!!! Baby Jayne refused to eat again. Caregivers said it was too watery and very difficult to feed even if Baby wants to eat. (arrggghhhhh!!) The rice had not been grounded yet into smaller grains.

Finally, I saw daylight for Friday’s porridge. Something ‘ding dong’ inside of me, and I decided that I should cook the porridge first on the stove before transferring it into the slow cooker. This time round, I also grounded the rice into smaller grains, cut down on the dried oysters and added in chicken. The porridge turned out to be sweet and nice. Baby Jayne ate the most on Friday in the whole week!

I pray it will only get better and better from now on!!!!