Hi, everyone. Just wondering what your babies are playing with these days? Clover likes rings for grabbing, her stuffed sloth for chewing, and handkerchiefs (also mostly for chewing). She just figured out that peek-a-boo is funny. And she's got a mobile that she likes to kick. Oh, and books, of course! Mostly she likes people and moving her body (naked rolling practice is her favorite part of the day) more than toys and games per se, but I want to hear what others are introducing to their babies now and what kinds of reactions you're getting!
Toys and games
She also likes toys, but the only one that doesn't frustrate her is the infamous Sophie giraffe teether. It's almost impossible for her to drop it and there's so many parts that fit in her mouth!
And the play gym has been a hit since day one. I've had o elongate the toys with a string though, because otherwise she screams when she can't lower them into her mouth.
Edited by cynthiamoon - 12/4/13 at 8:29am
Oh, yeah, the kissing game always gets big laughs for us, too!
Clover's mobile is actually something I made for her thinking she'd be able to grab the hanging things, but she *always* manages to turn herself around so she can kick it! No interest in grabbing those particular toys, though she likes to grab things from the blanket next to her. So funny.
I think I'm going to try the exersaucer next time we're at a friend's house who has one.
rainbownurse, C is the same way with the crawls, though she LOOOOves being on her tummy more than any child I have ever met. She can roll from tummy to back, but she hardly ever does it. She is super happy to look around with her head up and try try try to get those knees up beneath her. She can propel herself forward a little (!!), but it's nowhere near a crawl yet.
She also likes a raw silk napkin that I prop up and she can hold and feel the texture. We don't have a play mat or exersaucer or anything that props her up (we're influenced by RIE in that respect) so she spends most of her free play time on her back just engrossed in her surroundings.
In her car seat I do have those colored plastic teething rings that loop together into a long strand and she likes to hold them when she's in the car.
Harmonious, I really like parts of the RIE philosophy, too, which is why for the most part I haven't worried too much about toys and stuff. I guess I was just feeling like C was getting super bored and wanting to be entertained allllll the time there for a couple weeks (then I read that that's one of the hallmarks of this Wonder Week, and she seems to be going back to being a little calmer about life/better able to entertain herself.)
I do think that she has a VERY strong desire to be UPRIGHT, though, and I am not sure how to handle that. I mean, I would definitely never leave her in an exersaucer when she didn't want to be there, but when I have stood her up or propped her with her arms on the seat of a chair, she has actually laughed with delight. I'm feeling a little conflicted, which is why I was thinking of trying a friend's exersaucer -- could be that she only likes it when I'm holding her and isn't so into being held upright unnaturally, so I'm glad you brought that up.How do you/would you deal with Noor's desire to be in a position she can't get herself into? I am not an RIE expert, but I do want to respect her body and I am not sure which course of action is more respectful in this case. Hmmm.
RIE stands for raising infant educarers. I really like it and it resonates with me, but like C, Elliott has a STRONG desire to be upright and explore, so we are encouraging that. I don't let any one parenting philosophy influence my decision too much, because then when I do something that philosophy says "not" to do, I get serious parental guilt.
we've forgone everything but a play mat, mostly because Oliver seems happy enough anyway, and I'd like to avoid the baby clutter as much as possible! he also likes the O-ball, but other toys are a little too hard for him to manipulate right now. he can grab them, but he can't really do much with them, and he can't let go deliberately. he really likes the patterns on material for some reason too - he scratches at his sheets, at his play mat, and at the upholstery on whatever chair or sofa we're sitting on.
as for the exersaucer/Bumbo-type chairs/swings and other baby-holders, I doubt that short, supervised playtime does much harm developmentally. someone gave us a swing that we tried for a while, and he's just as content to be on the floor for a few minutes while I eat or use the bathroom as he is to be in the swing, so I just put it in the basement. and as long as the babies are agreeable, I think holding them is pretty awesome. after all, we probably don't have many more months of just holding these little person-blobs. some of us might be halfway through the in-arms phase already! since it's not keeping me from doing anything else, I pretty much just hold or wear Oliver all day (unless I'm trying to see if he wants to take a nap, like right now!). my husband holds him when he gets home from work in the evening, and I fold laundry or cook dinner or whatever. I've yet to hear a mother say something like, "I wish I'd spent more time cleaning the house and less time holding my babies," so I figure there's no harm in pushing off the chores.
oh, I forgot to add some of Oliver's favorite games:
- getting swung around and thrown lightly into the air. seriously, he loves it! I thought he would be afraid, but he laughs out loud when I toss him around. such a physical baby.
- eating Mommy's nose and chin
- anything with clapping
- eating my voice. okay, I don't know how we stumbled onto this one, but he likes to hold my face while I sing and make noises into his open mouth. he holds his head really still and concentrates on the sound/feeling. he doesn't seem to have a preference for high or low pitches, and sometimes I switch it up an make percussive sounds instead of pitched ones. he hasn't tried to sing back, and I'm not sure why he likes it so much. maybe he can feel the sound waves in his own head, and he thinks it's interesting? no idea.
Cynthiamoon, here is a link about sitting your baby up. I really enjoy this blog and think she presents the RIE ideas in a nice way. In fact this blog is how I even found RIE in the first place. I think I googled something during pregnancy and this came up and I was hooked.
We have a sheepskin rug on the floor with a quilt on it for him to play around on and he has started rolling completely off the thing and onto the floor. I usually hear a thump and look down to see him grinning at me about 4 ft away from where I left him.
And hair pulling. That's the best game. Grab handfuls of hair and eat them as fast as he can. He laughs the most charming laugh while doing it too. eats the toes while diaper changing, flips over and tries to get away while diaper changing, chews on anything in arms reach, jumps up and down on your lap, and yells at the top of his lungs and tries to grab/eat the book when I'm reading a bedtime story to the big kids. No shortage of personality in this baby.
As an aside, contrary to my occasional excessive wordiness here I'm a pretty quiet person, my husband talks a mile a minute, my big kids talk non. stop. And now Rowan is generally making some form of noise or another... The other morning I was making breakfast in my postage stamp size kitchen and suddenly my whole family was in there too and I looked around and every single person in my family had their mouth open with noise coming out.
I left the kitchen and went outside. It was crazy.
But I've made up a new noise for what Rowan does. Grindoling. It's that half unhappy half singing chewing sound he makes when he's biting my fingers or licking the quilt before a rolls over. Grindoling. I googled it and it doesn't appear to exist yet so I invented it.
Harmonius,I've really enjoyed browsing Janet's site over the last few days. Thanks for the recommendation. It seems like we have found our way to a lot of her suggestions, just maybe not the less common ones. For example, I've been encouraging independent play in Julia since she was first content on her own (around a month old maybe?) in addition to a lot of baby wearing. She's been able to play on her own for 30mins-1hour for a while now, though I have not been as strict about avoiding toys with more stimulation, like music or lights.
I really like the idea of giving her more time to explore her body movements on her own in a safe place though. She is outgrowing the play gym anyway, because she demands the objects go to her mouth, and when the dangling toys don't reach, she gets mad at them, lol. Maybe it's time to try a new space.
What I've been wondering is wether the type of surface and clothing she is wearing is hindering her mobility experiments. We have hardwood floors, so I've been putting her on a blanket. Also, it's kind of chilly in here, so she's always in long sleeves and long legs. I've noticed this makes it nearly impossible to move around on her own since everything just slips and slides out of the way, but I'm not sure what to do about it. We can turn the heat up, and possibly put her in just a onesie, but IDK about the floor.
I've found that bathroom-type rugs with the grippy backs work great for baby play on hardwood floors! I have a fuzzy rug in my bedroom that was originally meant as a bathroom rug that C really loves. I can put her on it in the morning and she'll play by herself while I get a little more snoozing in. She rolled from back to tummy for the first time on that rug just a couple days ago. As for chilliness, I usually just let her get colder than I normally would when she's busy playing. She'll squawk when she's uncomfortable, and I have warm clothes ready to bundle her back up in.