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Beyond Rice Cereal

My Annie was a good eater, happily gobbling up all the jarred foods I offered her. So I was thrown for a loop when, at 7 months, she'd often clamp her mouth shut when I'd try to feed her. At other times, she'd grab the spoon from me and insist on feeding herself. I also noticed that she stared at me longingly when I ate my own meals. What on earth was going on?

Little did I know that my baby and I were entering the transition zone  -- that period between 6 and 12 months when a spurt of development prompts changes in the daily eating routine. To help me get through it, I turned to parents and other experts with my questions. Here is their commonsense advice on what to do when your child has mastered the ABC's of feeding and is ready for new textures and tastes...

Julie Tilsner is the author of Planet Parenthood and Attack of the Toddlers.