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Letting babies self-feed has a number of amazing benefits in the short and long term. But staying clean is not one of them! Baby-led weaning is M-E-S-S-Y. That said, there are a few things you can do to minimize the mess in the early days:
Kalani, 12 months, washes her hands and arms in a plastic container.
Amelia, 10 months, washes her hands in a cup.
(But do use these fabulous products to help your baby self-feed.)
Adie, 18 months, lifts her suction plate off the table.
Max, 19 months, tips his bowl upside down.
At the beginning of the meal, start with the open cup with just a little bit of milk/formula/breastmilk in it. Then as the meal wears on, switch to a straw cup. (The end of the meal is when babies are most likely to throw things.)
Mina, 8 months, plays with a straw up.
(Seriously though, be careful with what your dog eats and if baby starts to feed dog a lot, put your dog in another room during mealtime so it doesn't become a game. xo)
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