I’d never heard of Skip Hop as a brand before, until my friend Jennie told me all about their baby toys. I’ve ogled at her Camping Cubs Play Mat each time we’ve visited! Last week, while on the hunt for toys to add to our […]
Category: Baby Play
There’s no question about it, being outside is all the sensory play a baby needs but when the heavens open & it’s a bit too chilly for our little poppet, we have decided to bring our outdoor garden play indoors. Instead of a blanket or […]
Wherever we go, be it baby classes, clinic, to friend’s houses there’s one thing everyone seems to be talking about and that’s tummy time! I’ll admit, to begin with I hardly ever placed Florence on her tummy, she wasn’t keen and I was nervous around it but over the last couple of weeks we’ve really upped our game and Florence is enjoying being on her belly a lot more. I’ve put together a list of top tummy time tips that have worked for us!
You’re already doing it!
Believe it or not, you’re more than likely already doing Tummy Time with your baby without even realising it. Every time you place your baby over your shoulder or lap to wind her, you’re encouraging her to use those important neck and core muscles. When Florence was just two days old, as we were waiting to come home from the hospital she was moving her head back and forth (while being supported of course!) and pushing off of my chest while I was cuddling her. So much so that she reminded me of a little mini headbanger! Baby wearing also counts as tummy time, so any time you’re out & about with your baby in her carrier or sling you’re getting a good healthy spot of Tummy Time. Both are gentle introductions to Tummy Time that you don’t really even have to think about!
Place baby at eye level
This really helped us in our early of Tummy Time days & still does if Florence is a bit reluctant. Place baby on the sofa or the bed and sit on the floor in front of her. I tend to chat or sing and it helps to get her attention. Baby’s love checking out their Mama’s face so offering her that eye contact while you play will encourage her to look up and build that neck strength!
Try a variety of different props
Florence isn’t keen on doing Tummy time activities on a flat surface and so we turn to a few different things to help elevate her. Our number one Tummy Time aid is our Poddle Pod, but we also use a variety of ordinary cushions, my pregnancy pillow, a nursing pillow & the edges of her play mat!
Create a distraction!
One of the best ways we’ve found to prolong Tummy Time is to create a distraction! Florence is the best she is at Tummy Time when there are other babies to watch at our Sensory Play class, but there are plenty more ways you can distract your baby from the fact they are on their tummy. Placing a pattern in their view, singing songs and chatting to them and rolling a noisey or reflective toy are all fail safes for us!
Incorporate tummy time into your day to day
Tummy Time will come more naturally to you and your baby if you incorporate it into your daily routine. For example, Florence loves to look at herself in the mirror while I’m doing my make up so I pop a pillow in front of the mirror and prop her up on her belly so she can chat away to herself. I’m just next to her so I can keep an eye and yet I can still get on with what I need to do too! We do this at roughly the same time every day and now hardly think anything of it at all! It’s just become habit.
Pick your moments
Like most things with babies, you have to pick your moments when it comes to Tummy Time practice! Choose a time in the day when your baby is at her happiest and most awake to get in some all important belly down play. This way she’ll be less likely to get worn out quickly or get grizzly after only a few seconds. Another thing to think about is how long you’re doing it for – short and sharp bursts are all your baby needs to get started with tummy time and as time goes on and baby gets happier on her belly you can increase the time more and more. At three months Florence now does the majority of her play on her tummy!
So it seems Florence has well and truly mastered the whole grasping thing. Just in time for the oh so glamorous Post Partum Hair Loss to kick in she’s become quite taken to grabbing handfuls of my hair! Over the last 3-4 weeks we’ve been […]
We’ve been practicing grasping with Florence recently and I’ve made some rainbow ribbon rings to incorporate into our play. They’re great for little hands and offer plenty of opportunities for clasping! Baby can grab the wooden ring itself or one of the ribbons. It really […]
Following on from last weeks light play, we’ve turned to a week of rainbow play exploring all things bright and colourful!
First things first, I gathered together a couple of our rainbow coloured blankets to lay on the floor. We chose our rainbow spot Snugglebundl, our Koodi Spot blanket & a super soft multi coloured blanket that Florence’s Granny made for her. These three things alone are perfect for play – full of colour to catch Florence’s eye and two completely different textures to explore her sense of touch. We also covered her Tummy Time pillow with one of the multi coloured In The Night Garden muslins from Zippy Bibs.
We used our rainbows from Florence’s bedroom. Fun to play with together or apart, we used our wooden rainbow stacker to practice her grasping skills. It’s probably a bit chunky for her at the moment and I might try and get something a bit smoother like this one from the Wooden Toy Gallery. She also loved just looking at it as I put it in different formations. We used the rainbow rattle too to get Florence to follow the jingling noise.
We have made a couple of rainbow themed sensory bottles inspired by Jennie’s DIY Discovery Bottles. This rainbow water bead sensory bottle was incredibly easy to make and really effective. Florence was mesmerised by the beads moving up and down in the bottle and we also used it as a tummy time activity by moving it back and forth along the floor while she layed on her front.
The Halilit Rainbomaker is one of Florence’s favourite toys. She loves the sound of rainfall it makes as well as watching the rainbow coloured balls fall from the top to the bottom and side to side. This is the perfect distraction tool for when Florence is a bit grumpy and is brilliant to encourage baby during tummy time, rolling it back and forth so that she can track it.
To link in with our upcoming weekend away to the Northampton Balloon Festival and the theme of her nursery, I hung these colourful paper lantern hot air balloons on a light up tree above her for her to watch and reach up to feel. They make a crinkly sound when touched and are a completely different texture to all of the other elements of our rainbow play.
Florence really loved the addition of these fabric scarves to our play. They come in a pack of ten in five different colours – perfect for or rainbow theme! She likes to clutch them in her hands and watch them shimmer in the light as she moves them. They’re also great to hang above baby to kick them or to tickle them with.
This baby loves a mirror! I propped our make up mirror up against the wall and she spent ages looking at herself and the colours around her. I placed the rainbow raindrop garland from her bedroom on the floor in front of her for her to look at when she wanted to rest her neck.
We are really looking forward to a day of rainbow play with some of Florence’s friends tomorrow when they come over for a play date. We will be adding a few more elements too including some scrunchy reflective foil, some musical instruments and Florence’s hot air balloon mobile.
It’s worth noting that some of the items we’ve used for our rainbow play are not specifically designed as toys and so it’s important that baby is supervised at all times.
You might like to play some music or sing some songs too. There are some lovely ideas for colourful songs here.
L A S T W E E K : Baby Sensory Light Play
N E X T W E E K : Reflections!
It’s safe to say Florence absolutely ADORES bath time! It is a key part of our daily routine and BOY do we pay for it if for whatever reason we skip it. Like me, a warm bubbly bath seems to completely relax her and get […]
We have been going to a baby sensory play class now for a few weeks and Florence absolutely loves it. Not only does it give her a chance to interact with other babies (all the goo-ing and gah-ing a girl could ask for) it also […]