According to the Grihyasutras, Annaprashana should be performed when the child is between six and seven months old. For a weak child, it can be postponed further. However it should not be performed before the child is four months old because he will not be able to digest food before then. Nor should the ceremony be performed after he is a year old because delaying additional nourishment could retard the child's natural growth and development. Some people believe that it should be performed after the child's first teeth come out as this is a sure sign that he will be able to digest solid food.It says that for girl child it should be performed on odd months and for boy child on even months.
Keep ALL the Pooja Samagri ready. Following items must be ready before starting Pooja:
Panchamrut (mixture of Milk, Ghee, Curd, Honey & Sugar) approx. one bowl.
6 sets of Gud Khobare (Jaggery pieces kept on small triangular pieces of dry coconut)
Stage duly prepared & decorated with Niranjan with ghee, samai with oil & Agarbatti (incense stick) lighted.
Finish your regular Pooja before starting Annaprashan Vidhi.
After a muhurta has been selected for the ceremony, friends and relatives are invited. Food is cooked to the chanting of appropriate Vedic mantras. The father feeds the child as the priest recites the Mahavyahritis. The child is then placed on kusha grass before the fire. Next, the father offers oblations to Agni, praying that the child should be strong and well-spoken. He also prays for a long, happy and contented life, for fame, and for a broad vision for the child.
After this, according to the Markandeya Purana, the child is placed amongst tools and articles used in various crafts and occupations. It is believed that the article that he touches first decides his future occupation.
When this has been done, the Brahmins invited for the occasion and relatives are fed food specially cooked for the occasion. The Brahmins are also given gifts.
Favourable Week Days
Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday
All Fixed Stars (Rohini, Uthram, Uthradam, Uthrattathi), all movable stars(Punartham, Chothi, Thiruvonam, Avittam, Chathayam), all friendly stars (Makayiram, Chithra, Anizham, Revathi) and all dynamic stars (Aswati, Pooyam, Atham)
Unfavourable TithisDwiteeya, Thriteeya, Panchami, Saptami, Dasami, Thrayodasi, Purnima
Apart from these, common Panchanga shuddi checks, the general astrological quality based on the horoscope for the moment is also analysed. Also, factors such as Solar and Lunar eclipses, Sankranti and Sandhyakalam are considered.