Anyway, from the time Henry was a month old, he was BIG. At each visit the doctor told me how quickly he was growing, and Henry was for the first year of his life about the 90th percentile for weight (and height). At his one-year visit, his weight started to drop, and we pushed down to the 50th percentile. This actually seemed quite normal to me as both my husband and I were fairly small when we were little. Well today, at 23 pounds 11 ounces, Henry dropped again to the 40th percentile for weight (we're now at 75th for height). I'm still not that concerned - he's more mobile now, and I still think he's just evening out after his breastmilk binge (he faithfully nursed every 3 hours around the clock until about 10 months) - but the doctor did mention that maybe I should try to add another cup of whole milk to his diet. I know that's not a big deal, but it definitely got me second guessing myself. I thought we were doing pretty well with the whole eating thing...and honestly, I'm not sure I can handle carrying a child much larger than Henry (he's still not walking). I mean, if my almost 24 pound son is considered to be only 40th percentile, how big are the 90th percentile kids???
Well, with me now doubting myself, I took Henry home and went to feed him lunch. On the way back from the doctor, I actually stopped and bought a few ready made items for me and my husband to eat. I had planned on feeding Henry some cheese and eggs, but then he kept grunting at my food. He usually does that, and then doesn't actually eat the food, so I indulged him as usual and gave him a piece of what I was eating - a rice-stuffed grape leaf. The next thing I knew, Henry ate 1 and a half stuffed grape leaves! Granted the nutritional content is not all that impressive, but they do have a small amount of protein, vitamin A, fiber, and some healthy fats. Plus, its a new flavor profile for him...which means maybe some new food options in the future!
Dinner was also a happy time...Henry almost willingly ate a new soup I made. Remember that extra kale I had? I found a really interesting kale soup recipe on Fatfree Vegan Kitchen that I adapted based on the ingredients I had on hand. I also added some barley because I like my soups to be balanced so that they're all I'd need to eat for dinner.
Anyway, Henry at first didn't want to try it, but once I let him hold the spoon with my help, he happily ate about 7 spoonfuls. Plus my husband and I absolutely loved it, so I highly recommend the recipe! So today was a great day for Henry trying new foods - now we just need to work on the volume.
North African Chickpea and Kale Soup (adapted from Fatfree Vegan Kitchen)
2 tsps olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
8 baby carrots, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1.5 tsps ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon paprika
pinch cayenne pepper
5 allspice berries (or 1/4 tsp allspice - I was out of ground allspice)
1/2 tsp ground ginger
generous pinch saffron, lightly crushed
1/8 tsp cinnamon
2 bay leaves
1 can chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
8 cups water
2 tsps chicken consomme powder
1/2 cup barley
1 large bunch kale, thick center ribs removed and chopped
salt to taste (I didn't think it needed anymore - the consomme powder was pretty salty)
Heat oil in large pot. Add onion and carrot and cook until onions soften. Add garlic and cook one minute more. Add the spices, including bay leaves, and cook stirring for another minute. Add the chickpeas and stir to coat with the spices. Pour in the 8 cups of water, the chicken consomme powder, and the barley. Bring to a boil, and reduce to simmer for 25 minutes.
Add the chopped kale and stir. Cook an additional 20-30 minutes, or until barley seems cooked. Season with salt if desired, and then serve!
Happy and (mostly) healthy eating!