Every time your baby masters a new milestone or makes a new developmental leap, you might feel stumped...
"What toys should she be playing with now?"
"She seems bored by what she used to play with!"
When SUPER Play Ideas Overwhelm Normal Parents
If you're stuck in a baby play conundrum, the lovely world of the internet will happily serve up a big ole steamy platter of baby play goodness. The only downside? Overwhelm! All the cutely organized craft supplies and fancy wooden toys and gorgeous playrooms on Pinterest can lead to playtime paralysis for those of us who lead, you know, normal lives with dirty dishes in the sink and a limited budget for baby entertainment.
Your Junk Drawer Is a Treasure Trove of Baby Play
Here's a little secret that motivated me to write my second book, Simple Play: Easy Fun for Babies: your home is already a goldmine of simple to set-up fun for your baby. Your junk drawer is a treasure trove of entertainment for your little one. I just love the sigh of relief parents breathe when they realize that the toy aisle at Target or DIY activities with lots of set-up and prep aren't their only options for keeping their little one busy playing, learning and developing!
Simple Play for Real Life Parents
Here are 10 super simple ways to entertain your "bigger baby" - once she can sit up and use both hands to play (although many of these also describe how to play with a much younger baby, too):
Metal Spoons In Metal Bowl: Yep, that's it. No explanation needed.
Baby in a Box: Put baby in a box to play. Give baby a box to turn over, bang and put things in. Drag or push baby around in a box.
Straws in an empty container: That about sums this one up!
A Stack of Greeting Cards: Next time you have a sepcial event, hang onto the cards you receive and pass them off to your babe (be sure to check for sequins, buttons or other bits of flair that could pop off and become a choking hazard)
An old magazine: Last month's periodicals are today's fuel for ripping, crinkling, flapping and flipping. Closely supervise to make sure your little one doesn't ingest last month's news.
Popsicle sticks or paint stir sticks in an empty container: Yes, Home Depot employees, I really do need all 12 of these stir sticks!
Open up the Tupperware Cabinet: Be prepared to wash some Tupperware after this one, but it can definitely buy you enough time to whip up dinner!
As much fun as it is to ooh and aah and drool over Pinterest-worthy elaborate play activities, I'm here to help you keep things realistic if that's what you need. Go junk drawer spelunking, whip up a super-easy play activity and pat yourself on the back for being a great parent! Happy Playing!
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