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By Mummies For Mummies (and Daddies too)

Month

February 2021

Homemade vs. Store-bought Baby Food: The pros & cons

Image result for baby purees

Starting on solid foods can be very exciting for both baby and parents. But with so many options of baby food in the market, parents may face a dilemma – should you buy the readymade ones or make your own at home? To make things easier for you, in this post I will list down the pros and cons of Homemade vs. Store-bought Baby Food.

Pros of homemade baby food

Food safety – since you are preparing it yourself, you have full control of the ingredients and process of making the homemade baby food. Nothing that goes into the food that you are unaware of. And your baby gets to enjoy freshly made purees!

Cost saving – although you have to fork out some $$$ to buy a food processor to get started, overall, making your own baby food will become cost-effective as you can prepare them in bulk and keep them frozen.

Food variation – creating your own baby food is fun as you get to make up your own food combinations to cater to your baby’s tastes and nutritional needs without having to buy multiple jars.

Cons of homemade baby food

Time consuming – especially for working parents. Cutting up foods, checking for seeds and pits, and constantly refreshing ingredients may take a lot of your time.

Food preservation – homemade baby food has no preservatives, hence it does not keep as well. They can be kept frozen, however should be made and stored in small batches.

Pros of store-bought baby food

Time saving – for working parents, store-bought baby food is ideal for you. The process of making your own purees may be lengthy, hence jarred foods save you a lot of time. Just pop one jar and dinner is served!

Portability – it is easy to store jars of baby food in your nappy bag or handbag if you are out and about. All you need is a spoon and it is mealtime for your baby!

Cons of store-bought baby food

Uneconomical – in the long run, jarred foods will cost you more than homemade baby food. For example, the price of a jar of readymade food is almost the same price as a bag of peas, which can be used to make multiple meals while a jarred food is typically for only one serving.

Food preservatives – A jarred food can contain a variety of listed and unlisted preservatives to ensure the food is stable. Therefore it is essential to always check the listed ingredients and best to opt for organic baby food that contains nothing but the good stuff! Check out Bellamy’s, Rafferty’s Garden, Bubs Organic, and more.

At the end of the day, the food you feed your baby is a personal choice – bought or not. As long as your baby is healthy and gets all the nutrition needed for growth and development, it does not really matter! If you have the time, you can have fun in the kitchen making homemade baby food. But jarred foods are not all bad either.

Food Allergies for Babies: What & How

Image result for baby eating

It is indeed a fun and an exciting milestone when starting your baby on solids and introducing new foods to your baby or toddler, however there are some common allergies that you should pay attention to especially if you have a family history of allergies, problems like eczema and asthma, or if a baby had a bad reaction to milk or soy.

The followings are the most common food allergies:

  1. Milk
  2. Eggs
  3. Fish
  4. Soy
  5. Tree nuts (such as walnuts and almonds)
  6. Wheat
  7. Peanuts
  8. Shellfish

Some foods may more likely to cause an allergic reaction than others. And amongst these eight foods, those that commonly affect children under 4 years old are milk, eggs, peanuts, and tree nuts.

Back in the day, doctors recommended to prolong the delays in introducing certain foods to babies who might have an allergy. However, recent research has shown that delaying the introduction of food allergens may increase the risk of developing serious food allergies. But, do talk to your pediatrician prior to introducing solids!

For your baby who might be at risk for food allergies, it is crucial to introduce foods one at a time. It is highly recommend introducing a new food for three days before jumping on to a new food so you can monitor for any delayed allergy reactions to the food. Although you can find single-ingredient jarred foods in the market, but there is no guarantee that the food has not been cross-contaminated in the manufacturing factory. Hence, the safest way to introduce new foods to your baby is to make your own purees so you can have full control over the production and know exactly what is in the food.

As your baby grows older and their diet expands, it is easy to lose track of which foods you have introduced and which foods caused a reaction. Remember to keep a list of foods you have introduced and note down any reactions observed. If you think certain food has caused fussiness, digestive symptoms, or eczema, stop feeding the food for 4-6 weeks before you introduce it again.

Below are the list of foods you should delay until your baby has reached 12 months:

  1. Cow’s milk – feeding your baby cow’s milk can cause nutritional deficiencies. After your baby’s first birthday, you can feed them cow’s milk as part of a healthy, balanced diet.
  2. Honey – as it may contain botulism spores, and your baby’s stomach is not acidic enough to dissolve the spores.
  3. Nuts or peanuts – a choking hazard for babies and toddlers. If there is a family history of severe nut or peanut allergy, do let your pediatrician know about conducting an oral food challenge in the doctor’s office before introducing peanut or nut butter.
  4. Other choking hazards – popcorns, whole grapes, cheese cubes, hotdog pieces, chunks of uncooked vegetables or fruits, or sticky foods such as peanut butter.

The best way to start introducing food safely is to talk to your baby’s pediatrician as they can take into account your baby’s medical history, providing you the most recent feeding guidelines, and give you personalized advice about introducing solids to your baby.

Gong Xi Kongsi: Gift Ideas For This CNY!

Image result for cny home decor

The pandemic has set a different tone and mood in welcoming The Year of The Ox. Every New Year we are looking forward to be with our family and have feasts during reunion dinner but this year, we can only usher in the New Year with the people who live within the 10km. The tradition may change a little as not every family members will be able to attend, nevertheless we can still spread and share good fortunes and love through gifts and treats to our loved ones. After all, isn’t that what every festivity teaches us – the art of reciprocating – to give and to receive. Here are some gift ideas that I thought would be fun to give and receive!

#1 For baby

If you have a baby niece or baby nephew, this is the perfect gift to give. It is a cute and adorable cuddle buddy that lasts a lifetime. Also for parents-to-be, this is a great deco idea for a nursery room too!

#2 For toddler

Kids love bright and colourful blocks like these! Gifting this bucket to toddlers would mean you are encouraging them to practice their fine motor skills and creativity as they stack the blocks. Let their imagination runs wild! They could be the next artist, engineer or even architect. Start ’em young! 😆

#3 For big kid

The perfect gift to keep them younglings to be active and spend some time outdoor! This folding balance bike helps to prep your kiddo to ride a bicycle by providing your kid the familiarity and confidence when transitioning into the real bicycle with pedals!

#4 For family

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Abundance Plant

Wishing the family with abundant of blessings and good fortunes by sending them this via Happy Bunch. A simple and nice addition to the house. Since it’s small, it can be placed anywhere at all. On the bedside table, living room, dressing table, and more. Tres chic!

The best gift for the whole family – mommy can have the bag, the family can have the treats. A win-win situation 😆 To make the bag more special, you can personalize it with the recipient’s name – so no one can claim the bag is theirs 😂 Get the set on ChristyNg’s website.

It does not matter the value of gifts, it really is the thoughts that count!

Taking this opportunity to wish all of you, Happy Niu Year and Gong Xi Fa Cai! May the year of the ‘Niu’ brings you and your family abundance of new opportunity, prosperity and good luck. Have a safe, blessed celebration! From all of us at Babydash.

Ox-cellent Ways To Celebrate Lunar New Year At Home!

農曆新年】拜年最怕小朋友扭計又黑面5招做好準備|博士媽媽|香港01|親子

Chinese New Year, also known as Lunar New Year is the most important holiday in the Chinese calendar. The holiday is usually filled with family and friends reunion, food comas after devouring delish foods and treats, and wishes for a new year full of prosperity and good fortune! However, for the moment, the safest activities are those with our immediate households that do not involve gatherings and travelling. BUT! Celebrating at home intimately does not have to be so mundane. Here are some ideas to celebrate the Lunar New Year at home ox-cellently with your kids!

#1 Make DIY Chinese lanterns

Sure you can shop some nice ready-made lanterns but how about get some colourful papers and make lanterns from scratch with your kids? Click here to find out how. It’s a simple and fun activity the whole family can participate and spend time together. These beautiful decorations can really add some colours and festive feeling to your home ✨

#2 Bake cookies

Who doesn’t like cookies? I know I do! And one of best parts of having kids, you can get them to help you in the kitchen! A win-win situation I’d say 😆 Through baking, your kid can learn to follow instructions by following a recipe, unleash their creativity by decorating cookies, and understand the process or workflow of creating something, in this case, cookies. And since this Chinese New Year will be spent socially distanced, you can also pack some baked goods with personalized notes to be delivered to your relatives!

#3 Red envelopes

If your kid wants it, they gotta earn in! 😝 This New Year, let your kid DIY their own red envelopes with red papers and decorate with gold pens and images. This teaches them about their culture and the true meaning of the iconic symbol of New Year – about the reciprocity of giving and receiving. It is never about the value, but these gestures of goodwill build relationships amongst family and friends.

#4 Virtual get-together

What this pandemic has taught us other than to be extra hygienic is that we can be there for our loved ones virtually! Though it is not the same as a physical gathering, but virtually, we are all near to each other no matter where we are in the world. This Chinese New Year, dedicate a time to connect with your family and friends to spread love and good fortunes!

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