My baby was born half a year ago. What? Like, for real?
I blinked, and Samuel is 6 months old. He is the light of my life and is SO FUN. More on him in his upcoming 5 & 6 month update posts. (The 5 month one is written, just yet to be published. #betterlatethannever)
Today I want to talk about a few products we love to play with. These are things that I have chosen to talk about because they will keep him entertained for more than just a couple weeks. These are products/toys that will grow with him and be around for quite a while.
Dr. Seuss Board Books – These little books (4″ by 6″ or so) are great for sticking in the diaper bag for story time on the go. Or, for baby to hit repeatedly (Sammy… I’m looking at you!) or to open and close over and over again. Why should babies/toddlers/kiddos listen to Seuss?
“Repetition, rhythm and rhyme help children in crucial ways to process the speech they hear, and fine-tune the connections between auditory and language networks in the brain. Eventually kids use those networks to master phonological awareness, the ability to break spoken language into its component sounds. That is a critical gateway skill for reading.
The link between sound and reading has been getting intense attention from researchers such as Kenneth Pugh of Haskins Laboratories and Usha Goswami of Cambridge University. Studies have shown that how a child’s brain responds to sound on the first day of kindergarten correlates to how many words per minute that child will read in 4th grade. How fluently a child reads in 4th grade has everything to do with how well that child will be able to tackle more sophisticated tasks such as working through word problems in math and reading for evidence in science and social studies texts-the very skills being asked of American students in the new Common Core Standards.” Taken from this site.
Foam Floor Tiles – If you’ve got wood floors, or not-so soft-carpet, invest in foam floor tiles. While they aren’t the most fashionable piece of home decor, this extra layer of padding is awesome for baby as he learns to sit up, crawl, and walk. They can be cleaned easily (who likes scrubbing spit up out of carpet?) and are portable to an extent. You can find them nearly everywhere, in fact my mom got a great deal on them at Aldi for $15! And, I’ve seen them in a faux wood finish.
Bright Stars Finding Nemo Jumper – This is my answer to “where can I put you for 5 minutes while I poop?”.
One thing I love about this jumper is that it is different. I am sick of every baby toy being jungle themed! My guy loves these sea creatures and their exaggerated black and white eyes. He jumps like crazy in this thing, and since it is suspended he really gets some air time! Keep in mind, the supports do have 4 height settings and the weight limit is 25 pounds. The seat cover does come out and is washable. Oh, and the batteries last forever in the little toys. We accidentally leave them on more frequently than I’d like to admit.
Soft Stacking Blocks – We received these as a Christmas gift and my first thought is that they were boring. But, I’ve come to realize that “boring” is completely necessary when you have a big bin of electronic light up toys with an overwhelming amount of features, sounds, lights, and colors. Did you know… the ability to stack blocks is a baby milestone? At 6 months old, I am stacking these 3 or 4 high and letting little guy “crash” them down and knock them over. He hears us count and then goes in to knock them over. These also are helpful for teaching colors later on.
Silicone Teether – This cheap little teether is my guy’s fave. I bought one for my cousin’s baby and she loves it too. It is so much more flexible than other teethers and has little silicone bristles that I would compare to velcro. I don’t doubt that it feels good to chew on! This is called a “step 1” teether by the brand, but I’m not sure if that is a marketing ploy to make you think you need to buy the next step up as your baby grows. Something for you to decide for yourself!
Boppy Pillow – If you’re looking for a baby shower gift that the new mother and baby absolutely will need, it is the Boppy. No doubt about it. We had to have this while nursing for the first 2-3 months, but it quickly transitioned into a product that was more for baby than for momma. We used this to prop up baby during tummy time, and as “training wheels” for learning to sit on his own. We love this slipcover design particularly because of the grass made from ribbons. At 6 months old, babies love tags, and my guy plays with the design on his Boppy every night after nursing (if he isn’t asleep! 😉 )
Sit-to-Stand Walker – An awesome transition toy. Right now, we are using the “console” part of the toy on the floor during play time. The features, lights and sounds, are perfect for my 6 month old. As he becomes more mobile, we will snap the console into the walker and he can take his little farm on the go! I’m embarrassed to say that hubby and I have the songs this toy plays memorized quite well. We traveled with this toy 2 weeks ago, and while I was nervous about it being a little bit big to take with us, I was happy that we brought it along.
There you have it – a snapshot of stuff we love! I would love to hear about anything that was a lifesaver for you when baby was 7-9 months old. We’ll be there before I know it!