hey baby: feeding

Image via Wilder by Anna Feller

I thought starting a baby on solids would be fun, and it was - for the first few weeks. Now, it's tiresome and extremely messy. Cooking three meals a day, batch steaming vegetables then heating frozen purees, prepping and shopping takes up a lot of time. The end goal (almost there) is getting them eating what you are - it makes you healthier and life easier.

Here are some things I bought for cooking, serving and storing food.

Bamboo bowls and plates, in beautiful colours, biodegradable, unbreakable and safe by Ekobu.
The only completely plastic free sippy bottle I could find - stainless steel and silicon Pura. It can convert from a teat bottle, to a sippy bottle to a straw to finally a drink bottle top.
Silicon freezing trays and spoons (they chew them, BPA free is great but better to be rid of plastic entirely).
Enamel or glass storage boxes for the freezer (variety of sizes is a good idea).
The River Cottage Baby Cookbook

And here are some ideas of things to serve (I'm not a health professional by any means, this is just what I've been doing at 8 months).

Green smoothies (from a spoon), spinach, coconut milk or water, chia, frozen banana, cinnamon
Porridge (oat or quinoa), plain or with fruit (banana, berries, mango, grated apple) cooked with milk or water (coconut, formula, oat) with cinnamon and ground vanilla.
Bits of cut up fruit - raspberries, banana, mango, papaya, blueberries
Mashed cooked fruit - pears, apples.
Chunks of cold tofu.
Mini fish cakes (potato, lemon zest, flaked white fish, parsley, pepper).
Mashed veggies (lentil and squash, lentil and carrot with coconut oil and coriander and garlic, lentil and sweet potato, sweet potato and spinach).
Finely chopped brown rice pasta with broccoli and cheese sauce.
Baby falafel (no salt, baked not fried).
These muffins without the added nuts, seeds or chocolate chips (I used blueberries instead).
Half an avocado, mashed.
Warmed, cut up corn tortilla, some cut up cherry tomatoes, pieces of mozzarella.
Baked sweet potato pieces, mashed black beans, avocado, yoghurt.

And some places to find more ideas for meals...

One Handed Cooks
Wilder
Weelicious
Young Gums
Camille Styles

lean and restrictive


"I think my work changed for the better when my son was born six years ago. My collection became more lean and restrictive in a very good way. I trimmed back everything that was non essential. It has molded me into a much more efficient worker, designer, and person. There is no more room for second guessing. There is too little time in the day, when you have another person depending on you for everything. I have had to tune into my instinct, and listen to only that. It is a good way to live." - Jesse Kamm

lunchspo



Desperately needing lunch inspiration? I found mine here. It's worth delving into the CAP Beauty blog archives too, if you've time. It's an amazing natural beauty store in NYC, I can't wait to visit.

female furniture designers



Loved reading of Leanne Shapton and Rachel Comey's collaboration exploring the work of female furniture designers. I was pleased to realise I own pieces by Eileen Gray and Anna Castello Ferrieri (I mean, I knew I owned an Eileen Gray table but wasn't aware Ferrieri designed the Componbili!). 

hey baby: dani kenney







"BEAUTY IS THE HARMONY OF PURPOSE AND FORM."  - ALVAR AALTO, 1928


Stumbled across Dani Kenney's Instagram page on a late night feeding rabbit hole. Aside from having a spookily similar wardrobe (suede Birks, gingham kaftans from Innika Choo, the exact same Doen pieces) and a baby that's almost exactly the same age as mine, I was excited to see her lush, simple, inspired products for pregnant women. The design and ethos are spot on, names are evocative  (Oranges, 1977) and funny (Vajay Spray for postpartum), it's all organic and safe and lovely. I'm excited about her writings too. 



Shop HERE.



hey baby: a simple, natural nursery


I found it a little difficult to find simple, stylish, safe baby products that worked with the rest of my home. For some unfathomable reason, most easily available baby stuff seems to be plastic, polyester, lime green or in primary colours. Also, I think there's a lot of scaremongering and playing on a new mother's insecurities to purchase lots and lots of unnecessary and expensive things.

Here, a list of minimal and beautiful things I've found, purchased and like. I haven't bought things I felt were unnecessary but everyone's different: you might want a baby monitor, bouncer, nappy bag or whatever, I tried to just get things that seemed unavoidable and then see what I need once the baby arrives. You can't really use breast pumps or bottles until they're around 6 weeks old; and they're not really interested in toys until that age either. I'll do a separate post on the toys, books and clothing I like next week.

Ikea Sniglar Crib
Affordable, yes. But also the most simple design I could find; and the only one that I found made of untreated wood (beech), something important to me for avoiding offgassing (the fumes that come with new furniture).

Little Green Sheep Crib Mattress
A natural mattress made of wool; since the baby spends so much time on this I wanted to make sure it was free of chemicals and flame retardants and all those bad things. This one is good as you can flip it over to a different firmness once the child is older.

Naturepedic Changing Mat
I felt like the baby will spend a lot of time on this, so chose to buy a slightly pricier changing pad. Again, it was the only one I could find that didn't have flame retardants and a plastic cover.

Numero 74 Changing Mat Cover
I love this French brand, the washed linen fabrics are so soft and the colours are neutral and clean. I bought a soft grey one.

Weleda Calendula Changing Balm, Baby Oil and Baby Wash
I've used Weleda throughout my pregnancy and it's the cleanest product I could find, I love the natural scents and it's really affordable too.

Numero 74 Quilts, Cushions and Pillows
Again, this French brand has gorgeous soft linen pillows, quilts and decorative cushions, I bought them in a range of greys.

Nature Baby Moses Basket
I love Nature Baby, it's an iconic New Zealand brand with a beautiful range of organic products. This Moses Basket is simple and lovely with a natural mattress insert.

Nature Baby Sheets and Blankets
I bought white organic crib sheets, Moses basket sheets and a couple of soft blankets from Nature Baby too.

Nature Baby Sleeping Bag
Sleeping bags seem much safer and easier than blankets and sheets; we got a few of these in different weights. I like the simple designs and organic cottons they come in.

Stokke Baby Carrier
This was the only carrier I could find that was made of a fabric designed for a hotter climate. It's simple and looks kind of like a backpack, comes in all black, works in multiple positions (front and out facing as well as on the back) so it can be used for almost three years; has been approved by the Hip Dysplasia Foundation and will fit both me and my husband.

BabyZen Yoyo Plus Stroller
I think strollers are very personal choices based on budget,  location and situation. I was after something that was lightweight and small as Hong Kong is hilly, we don't have a car and there are often stairs and escalators to deal with; plus we travel a lot. This French brand is great, the base converts from newborn to six months and can be used until around two years of age; looks stylish and comes in all black; works with most carseats; folds up to carry on size and is super light.

Cybex Aton Q Carseat
As with a stroller, a carseat seems like a very personal decision. I wanted one that would work with the stroller we'd chosen, came in all black and has a high safety rating; as well as being suitable for a newborn right through to 18 months. This ticked all the boxes.

Baby Wrap
I got this soft, stretchy black baby wrap by Solly.

Clothing
You could go crazy here, I tried to keep it minimal and just bought multipacks of newborn size white socks, mittens, onesies, hats, bibs and muslin swaddles from John Lewis. I'll do another post on the childrenswear brands I've found and loved.

Also...

A Pinterest board of nice baby related finds.
A to do list for your third trimester.
The prettiest maternity and nursing bra ever.
Little Spree is a nice source of high street kids clothing finds.

label love: common muse

A new discovery: Common Muse. The Singapore based brand is sleek, simple and comes at chain store prices. I've been on the look out for a pair or two of new earrings for a little while; tempted by the Celine baubles but earrings are the sort of thing I buy and then don't wear enough to justify spending too much on.

Common Muse is a rare find, free of any superfluous detail, clean, minimal and elegant. To be honest, I want the entire collection!







label love: doen







Gorgeous, natural loose shapes and Topanga Canyon vibes from new US label Doen. These are all the things you've always wished you'd found vintage but never have... in the right fit and natural fibres (silks, cottons, wool). I love their ethos (clothes made, funded and designed by women, for women) and their marketing and branding too; as well as their profit donation of a children's garment to female literacy foundation Room to Read.  Plus, of course I am going to want a silk tunic in the colour 'nut milk'. 

small pleasures #1


Ellsworth Kelly, Lemon Branch, 1964

Listening to Julia Houlter and Cate Le Bon (thoughtful, alternative approaches to pop!), reading Talk by Linda Rosenkrantz ('transcribed converstations of louche art world New Yorkers in East Hampton in the 1960s'). Liking languid black and white line drawings. Eating vegetarian kimchi dumplings. Making foamy matcha oat milk lattes (not sure about these as they take a lot of fiddling and taste better when someone else, perhaps more expert, makes them).  Looking at beautiful pictures of Hong Kong gardens by Mary Gaudin (just round the corner from my apartment, I wish my pictures of the gardens looked more like this).  Reading new blogs like Sartreuse (I love reading tidy minimal French blogs of younger women and wishing I was this careful and chic!).