Monday, September 14, 2015

Baby 101: Toddler Tableware

For the first several months of finger foods, we just dumped bite-size foods on C's high chair tray and let him go to town.  Once he was over a year old, I realized we should probably start teaching him to eat like an actual human and not a barbarian - you know, off a plate and with utensils :)  This is still a work in progress; he holds the utensils but doesn't know yet how to stab/scoop up food with them, although he can feed himself if we help him get the food onto the fork or spoon.  These are our favorite toddler tableware items:

Playtex Anytime Straw Cups

These are what we use for C's water and milk with meals; we prefer the straw cup to the typical sippy cup for oral development reasons - plus, it makes for an easy transition to kid's meal cups when we're eating at a restaurant.  We use the 9-ounce size without handles, although we started on the 6-ounce size with handles while he was learning to drink from a straw.

Munchkin Plates

We initially started with the Nuby sectioned plates, but they only come with 2 in a package (so they end up being more expensive per plate) and they do not "nest", so they take up too much room in the cabinet and aren't steady when stacked (they tend to avalanche).  We needed more plates so we ended up switching to the Munchkin brand plastic plates; they're less expensive and stack well in the cabinet. According to the box they're microwave and dishwasher-safe, although we try not to microwave any of C's food in plastic (even though they're BPA-free).

Gerber Graduates Kiddy Cutlery Forks and Spoons

I really like these forks and spoons; they have a thick rubber handle, making them easy to grip for C's little hands, and the actual eating surface is stainless steel, which holds up better than plastic to teething, seems easier to get really clean, and has a little more weight to it than some of the flimsy plastic cutlery they make for toddlers.  It also has a little foot built in that keeps the fork/spoon from resting directly on the table surface, so it stays cleaner while eating.  We just bought the forks and spoons in 3-packs (6 of each); they make a 3-piece set that contains a fork, knife, and spoon, but I can't imagine what scenario my toddler needs a knife for.

Gerber Graduates Bunch-a-Bowls

These little plastic bowls are the perfect size for C's oatmeal, yogurt, or applesauce - bigger than the small Pyrex cups we used when he was eating baby food, but still smaller than our regular cereal bowls.  I also love that they come with matching lids; if he doesn't finish something, we can just pop the lid on it and stick it in the fridge instead of having to transfer it to Tupperware.

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