New babies are super cute, with their little toes, cooing noises and big, sleepy yawns.
And this week, KCA welcomed a beautiful baby girl to the family! Lani, KCA’s executive director, welcomed a beautiful baby girl, named Lilana, at 9:08 p.m. June 23. Both are doing great!
But not everyone loves a baby, particularly older children who are accustomed to not sharing the spotlight. Including these new big brothers and sisters with the chores associated with all things baby can make the transition a little easier.
Clearly newborns won’t be eating baby food. Once the little one is enjoying more solid treats, around 8 to 10 months old, everyone can be part of making what’s on the menu. It’s not exactly a challenging recipe. It is a fun way to talk about colors, the importance of clean food and responsibility to care and respect the new baby.
Many foods are based simply on fruits and vegetables. Have the big brother or sister pick out his or her favorites and let’s get to work. As a youngster I enjoyed carrots and peas.
Start by washing the veggies in cold water without soap.
Many foods should be steamed or boiled before being mashed up. This really depends on the food. Take carrots, the vegetable should probably be steamed. If using baby carrots, there is no need to use a knife! Bigger carrots should probably be cut into smaller pieces, however.
Steam the carrots, rather than boiling them. This will help keep most of the vitamins inside the food. If you don’t have a steamer, don’t panic! Put the carrots in a pasta strainer and suspend it over boiling water. Steam will slowly cook the veggies while keeping all the goodness inside.
Did you know carrots are a wonderful source of a vitamin called beta-carotene? Hard to say right? Think of it like this: A fighting fish is called a beta. It’s also a work often used to describe early prototypes in technology. Break down carotene by saying this, Care Oh! Teen. You got it!
Beta-carotene is known to help with your eye sight and helps keep people generally healthy.
Once steamed put the carrots in a food processor, where they will remain until close to a pureed state. The carrots will be warm, but the cooling process will thicken the puree. Use the hot water from steaming the vegetables to thin out the puree, making it edible for the baby.
Not all food needs to be steamed. Mangoes, for example, are already pretty soft. If the food is being prepared for a really small baby, however, it probably should be. If you decided to use mangoes, slice up into pieces until you have one cup, then puree and follow the instructions above.
By helping, our new big brother or sister learned to eat healthy and helped pass those traits on to their new little sibling.