Last month when we first introduced rice cereal to Kerrington, she would thrust her tongue out like a baby lizard each time the spoon approached her mouth. Slowly, surely, she's learned to swallow solids and to expand her palate: green beans, peas, butternut squash, and sweet potatoes.
Yesterday was carrots. During lunch I scooped whatever dripped onto her chin and cheeks and aimed for her mouth again. (I've always remembered Anne Lamott's description in Operating Instructions: "Feeding a baby is like filling a hole with putty -- you get it in and then you sort of shave off all the excess around the hole and get it back in, like you're spackling.")
In the midst of this, I noticed what I was doing. I was sitting across from her and coaxing her to open her mouth by opening mine. Why do parents do this? Modeling good behavior? Solidarity? Unconscious motivation?
At the end of lunch it resembled a gratuitous crime scene, the victim obviously the carrots since Kerrington didn't seem to notice or mind at all that she was covered.
Feeding babies is a messy prospect.
Somehow I didn't remember this when I was cooking dinner. In one of those mommy-only-has-two-hands strokes of near-brilliance, I asked Reese to feed Kerrington. Win-win-win, right? I could cook, Reese would be occupied, and Kerrington would get fed. Simple.
A few moments later I looked up. Reese had lost interest and left her station at the high chair. Kerrington had overturned the dish of baby food. Brooke had entered and was trying to stick the spoon into Kerrington's mouth. Or her eye. I'm not sure which.
Ah, feeding time.