Infant Dinners to Toddler Dinners: How We Drop Bottles

When Landon was around 11 months, I started wondering about getting off bottles. The idea seems so hard, right? Since he was in daycare at 10 weeks, he got bottles during the day. He was still nursing morning and night but most milk was in bottles. And every evening, we looked at the pile and thought “when the hell can I stop washing all these?” On top of all that, I didn’t want a toddler carrying bottles around. Mission: get him other ways of getting milk. He slowly dropped bottles at daycare and on the week of his first birthday, we dropped the last one on his own. He just didn’t want it. HOORAY!


Open Cups

So now we are coming to the 1 year mark for ole Ollie beans (Landon’s nickname that I freakin love) and wondering the same thing. Fortunately for us, our daycares are Montessori (Ollie’s) or very close to it (Landon’s). They stress independence pretty early on. We like this. Being 2 only children, we know the power of independence. One thing both daycares heavy to stress is independence with food. It’s also why I did the baby led weaning approach a little. Learning to eat on their own was important to us. With that, using an open cup is started as soon as they are sitting at the table (both boys around 6 months). The cups we use look like little versions of restaurant type plastic cups. A little larger than a shot glass. Ollie is doing really well with it and even learning to grab himself (see below with his teacher Miss JJ).

20130623-195503.jpgSo around the 10 month mark they asked me to start just sending 1 bottle for before afternoon nap but just a capped bottle of milk for cups for snacks. So he gets an 8oz capped bottle for meals and snack and a 7 oz bottle for nap (note he doesn’t get quite that much on the weekends). He then would have a morning bottle and small bedtime bottle.  Recently I started making the other 2 bottles and just serving as much as I can in open cups at breakfast and dinner and then just give the remaining in a bottle. Some days, he never gets the bottle. He just drinks it all in the cup. It is going really well. Daycare told us he seemed to start to really get it and so we ran with it.

Sippy Cups

Now with Landon, it took a while to find the right kind of sippy. It seems to be the same with Ollie. They either just want to bang it on the table or chew on it. And this time around, I am honestly lazy. I was buying tons with L but meh. So I have dragged my feet about it but PROCRASTINATION PAID OFF. While meeting the lovely Maria the other weekend (she is a mom of 5 and foster mom…so HIGH FIVES TO MARIA) I was ranting about this dilemma and she told me what she always does. It is so simple I can’t believe this shit isn’t Pinterested like WHOA.

best sippy idea ever


Take the sippy top from a Take n Toss cup and put it on a small Take n Toss small bowl. BAM. It is small enough they don’t have to tip it far. It is cheap and reusable on many levels. I broke this idea out on Saturday and SHAZAM. The small size is nice for him to grasp and isn’t too heavy with liquid. I think those small containers have a max of 4 oz. The one thing is that it isn’t spill proof but right now I am just working with getting him off the bottle. Baby steps.


So what is your story with switching off bottles? Did you struggle? Have a magic bullet that helped bridge that gap? Did you have to transition a breast only baby to a cup? I am looking for community here because I know this issue is a tough one and very individual.




  1. My older daughter transitioned well off the bottle and was using a cup/weaned at a year. She had a more difficult time losing the pacifier (I cut the end off at 15 months). Now my 8 month old girl is going to have a harder time losing the boob. My mom started watching her at 6 weeks and she took the bottle fine. But then when the 4 month crap hit she decided no more bottle-she would just hold out for me to get home. She started reverse cycling to ,ake up for it. She’ll drink water out of an open cup, but prefers to nurse. At least my niece is benefitting from all my extra milk.

    I will have to try the smaller sippy. I’ve often wondered why they make sippy cups so darn big when a serving size isn’t much for toddlers.

  2. I SO needed this post today after a trying weekend of sippy cups. E took the first type of sippy cup I bought. (Same with the first set of pacifiers, bottles, etc.) Alec – hell no! He’s our red-headed hellion who wants to make everything difficult. We just bought the take-and-toss cups to try (which he did better with than the first cup type) and now I’m going to have to find the take-and-toss bowls because that seems genius!

    E finally transitioned from a bottle around 15 months or so, but it was just that night time bottle that she was taking by then. We ended up changing our night time routine to accomodate the sippy cup of milk before bed time to make that transition, but was oh-so-glad when it finally worked.

  3. We got …lucky? My daughter got roseola and 2 new teeth over the course of a week, two weeks before her first birthday. During that week, she rejected all bottles. We went with it and the next week when we sent her to daycare, we sent her with just sippy cups. She cried for a bottle a couple of times when she saw other kids with “her” bottles but she got over that in just a couple of days. PHEW.

    Also, I don’t have those take and toss cups yet but everyone I know swears by them (other than the leaking problem) so I think they will be our next step to open cup. I like the idea of using the little bowls, too!

  4. I feel like this was the least difficult thing we had to go through. Once we found the sippy our son liked we just started taking away one bottle feeding at a time. The bedtime bottle was the last to go but the week after his first birthday, he dropped it and we were done. No struggles. Now you want to talk breaking paci??? THAT was a struggle!

    Our daughter will be 6 months next week and we are already starting the BLW (which your post has been very helpful on) and I will introduce her to the sippy very soon as well. No expectations, just letting her get acquainted with it. And then we will try the same approach we did with our son on her. Here’s hoping it works!

  5. It was really easy for Abby. Granted, she was also in daycare, where they had her sitting at a little table like Ollie above in the picture around 10-11 months to work on her independence. Also, I stopped nursing around 7 months because of supply issues, so she was on all bottles. I thought let’s just give it a try with sippy cups and whole milk right when she turned one. I also wanted to support daycare as she was going into the early toddler room where she’d be sitting at a table with kiddos drinking out of cups. (Of course if Abby wasn’t ready and needed a bottle still, they were wiling to accommodate, but I thought let’s get her ready with practice at home.) I can’t remember or not, but I’m thinking she had sippy cups before that with little bits of water while eating finger foods, so it wasn’t new. She took to it right away, and we never looked back! I also think it was easier for Abby because she wasn’t a paci baby. She could care less.

  6. I’ve loved that our three littles are doing stages so close in times. We jumped to the nuby sippy cups as well as a verity of others within the last two weeks. I have some take & toss ones from a shower maybe in the top of our cabinet. I’ll try them next week at the beach. Thanks for that find!

  7. I don’t remember it being something we actually “did” with Brooke. We just never put cow’s milk in bottles so when she was done with expressed breastmilk or formula at daycare, there were no more bottles. I don’t know if that’s why it was easy or if we just got lucky!

  8. We never did a sippy cup, at 6 months I started introducing a straw cup as well as just a regular cup. After getting good at the straw cup he only got that during the day and a morning and night bottle. Eventually I replaced the morning and night bottle with the straw cup too. Now that he doesn’t just throw everything on the floor I will try to improve the drinking straight from the cup

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