Mira's been trying a bunch of new foods. Now that she's 8 months old, the list of acceptable foods has opened way up. She's now eating a lot of the foods that Brian and I eat. We just make our dinner and then cut up really small bites for her. For example, tonight we had steak, yellow squash, and parmesan pasta. She had a really easy time with the squash; I just cut off the skin and fed her pieces of it with my fork. The pasta we cut into very tiny pieces and she ate that off of her fork. The steak she only had a couple of bites, but I just cut them really super small (since she can't really break it up by gumming it) and then pushed them into her mouth with my finger. She's still not mastered finger foods very well yet. If you give her little finger foods, then she picks them up and gets them in the middle of her hand and then she can't figure out that she needs to open her fist to get it into her mouth so instead she usually just drops it on the floor. She can somewhat use a fork. If you poke some food with her fork and then lay the fork in front of her, sometimes she'll pick the fork up and put it into her mouth to get the food. But other times she'll just bang it on things until the food flies off in some random direction.
Part of me hopes that she learns to feed herself soon because having to feed her every bite is a bit tedious, especially when I'm also trying to feed myself. But the other part of me wants to hold back, simply out of fear of the mess. I'm afraid that I'm already not giving her enough opportunity to try to do it herself. But then I remind myself that she will eventually learn to feed herself no matter how long I continue to spoon-feed her. I mean, you never hear about that 13 year old that refused to put food into his own mouth and had to have mommy feed him with a spoon. At least, these are the things that I tell myself when I start worrying too much. Which is often.