Meal times at our house have been a little messier as of late. As the babies' hand/eye coordination and fine motor skills improve, their desire for independence also grows. Translation: They want to feed themselves.
At almost every meal now, a spoon battle erupts. Baby decides it's time to take a bite for him or herself and makes a play for the spoon. Since they're not THAT coordinated, Baby usually grabs the business end of the spoon, resulting in a handful of vegetable mush. Baby then calls a time out from eating to marvel at his or her hand squishing the vegetable mush. Were I a singleton mommy, at this point I would just pause the meal in order to clean off the affected paw. Experience, however, tells me that to do so would mean violent protests from the baby who doesn't have a fistful of vegetables to squeeze in addition to the baby who would miss his or her new goo treasure, so we amble on through the meal. Since eating seems to make my babies sleepy, the face rubbing portion of the meal begins, and the result is something like this:
Being the professional I am, I do have a couple of strategies to try:
1. A Spoon for Baby/A Spoon for Mommy - At least half of our baby spoon collection was lost in our recent move, and I've finally given up hope that they will magically appear. A new supply of spoons means that I'll have enough to let each baby hold a spoon while I do the actual feeding.
2. More Finger Foods: As hard as it is for me to overcome my choking paranoia, I know that it's time to increase the amount of finger foods they're eating. Spoons are tricky, but fingers - why, they've been in rapt study of their hands for months now.
While Linus is the primary face rubber, Veda has adopted her own vegetable mush game. Occasionally when I'm turned to shovel a bite into her brother's mouth, instead of swallowing, Veda squirrels her portion away. She must repeat this at least once more, because by the time I realize what's going on, she's accumulated a rather full mouth complete with puffy cheeks. Then she looks at me, often with a mischievous grin, and her bounty begins oozing forth.
The fact that I can't help but giggle a little is probably doing nothing to discourage her.