Letter Re: Raising a Healthy, Happy Infant in a Survival Situation

Mr. Rawles,  
Just a note to clarify the use of homemade baby cereals:  I made much of my own children’s baby foods and one thing that was stressed often was that there is a fundamental difference between homemade grain cereals and store bought.  The powdered cereals you buy at the store are made from cooked and dehydrated cereal grains and can be reconstituted with just a bit of warm water or milk.  When you grind your own grains at home (which I did and recommend from a nutrition and budget standpoint) you must then cook the ground cereal by adding it to boiling water and cooking much like you would prepare oatmeal.  If you do not do this you are feeding your baby a difficult to digest raw grain gruel and will most likely pay the consequence by staying up all night with a crying baby.  Homemade baby cereal can be made by adding about 1/4 cup of ground grains (brown rice, barley, and oats are nutritious and easily digestible) slowly and while whisking to 1 cup of boiling water on the stovetop and cook the mixture for 10 minutes over medium-low heat. After cooking you can add a little fruit or cooked veggie puree. I used a lot of mashed bananas and avocados for their nutrition benefits and because they are easy to mash in tiny amounts on demand.  I also used homemade canned applesauce, fruits commercially canned in their own juice, and leftover steamed veggies from family meals. Munchkin makes a small and inexpensive baby food grinder hand cranked baby food mill that takes up about as much room in the cupboard as a drinking glass. I recommend every mom and future mom own one. Making your own baby food makes sense to me all the time, but would be a true necessity without stocked shelves of Gerber available on demand.  It also doesn’t hurt to keep a box or two of instant rice cereal on hand in case of emergency. Thank you for all you are doing to help us inform and encourage each other in uncertain times.   God Bless, – Minnesota Rose