These products make mealtime fun for little ones.
Fast as a Speeding Bullet
Making your own baby food doesn't have to be daunting or time-consuming thanks to the all-new Baby Bullet system, from the makers of the original Magic Bullet. This food-prep dynamo is outfitted with everything you need to puree fresh concoctions for your solid-ready infant, including freezer-safe storage cups with a date-dial and two blades (one for milling grains to make cereal). And it doesn't need to be obsolete when your tyke starts finger foods: There are recipes for how to incorporate healthy veggie purees into bigger-kid foods. ($59.97, including bonus of a thermal tote bag)
Suck It Up
Our tiny testers couldn't get enough of their GoGo SqueeZ Applesauce - the "applecinnamon" flavor was an especially big hit, though all the naturally sweet varieties were met with smiles. The pouch (initially designed by NASA) makes for a particularly fun-to-eat treat for your toddler, and a convenient, no-mess option for you-plus, the 100% fruit snacks contain no artificial flavors or preservatives and are gluten-free, dairy-free, and kosher-certified. ($2.49-$2.99 per four-pack; $1 per single pouch; available at Costco, Whole Foods, and Kings stores; and online at www.amazon.com)
BandaBib's bandanna style is oh-so-cute, and its functional shape allows it to safely and comfortably fit closer to the chin than standard bibs, just right for catching baby drool without all the extra bulk. When your child graduates from dribbling to chewing, it still fits the bill. The BandaBib comes in a variety of colors and styles and is made from 100% soft cotton fabrics free of harsh chemicals. ($12; www.bazzlebaby.com or 800-519-3386)
How Now Brown Cow
Coaxing young children who are first starting on solids to eat can be an adventure, but AnimalFun Infant Tableware Sets let you have some fun along the way. Each set (available themes include baby chick, baby cow, baby monkey, and baby tiger) comes with a divided plate, bowl, and spoon, is dishwasher safe, and, made of melamine, is virtually unbreakable. Here's an idea: Get a place setting for every member of the family - you'll lighten things up around the table, set a real example for your developing tot, and have instant portion control for the adults! ($17.99 for set; www.snacktrap.com)