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Baby Bites

The day I presented my son Hank, then 6 months old, with his first spoonful of rice cereal, he sniffed it, wrinkled his nose, and frowned. Undeterred, I gamely held it in front of his mouth. After a few seconds he opened up, just enough for me to slip the food between his lips. He quickly swallowed, and I was all set to proclaim victory when he banged his fist onto the high-chair tray and burst into tears.

The next day was hardly better. Hank ate two bites of cereal but spit out almost as much as he took in before clamping his mouth shut for good. By the third day, though, he managed to swallow a few spoonfuls, and by the fourth, he eagerly downed six.

Two and a half months later, Hank is an eating machine. He enjoys not only cereal but also green beans, chicken, turkey, applesauce, and bananas. He adores sweet potatoes and squash. All proof that while getting your infant started on solids can seem a bit daunting, most babies adapt pretty quickly. All it takes is some patience and a little know-how.

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