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When it comes to Play-Time Essentials, it’s really going to depend on your little one’s age and developmental milestones (and each child develops at their own pace so never pressure them). The good thing about most toys is that they will be labeled with the recommended age and developmental purpose—that should help alleviate some stress on your part when it comes to picking the right toy for your little one.
For today’s list, I will be focusing on the stuff we’ve gifted or purchased for our little one. He just turned 4 months at the time of writing this piece and so a lot of his Play-Time Must-Haves have been in the 0-6 Months range. Although we do have more Play-Time toys and gadgets than the ones listed, I chose to focus only on the ones he engages with the most and loves.
Your baby starts really being fun after at around the 3 month mark. Before then, they aren’t really doing much because their eyesight is still developing and they haven’t really figured out how to intentionally use their hands. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t still taking in the world. They definitely are, and some of these playtime must-have will allow you to help them along as they march towards each development milestone.
I did write a review of this play gym, which I definitely recommend reading. This was a product one of my co-workers recommended to me a couple of weeks after our little one was born, and we’re so happy I listened, this play gym has brought my little so much joy.
This lightweight bouncer has come in hand a lot of times. This has been a great complement to our Graco Swing: easy to carry around and doesn’t take up a lot of space. It’s one of our little one’s favorite spots to hangout when we’re moving from room to room doing chores (folding laundry, sending a quick email, vacuuming etc.)
Our little guy was drawn to this black and white according book (almost mesmerized), especially in the first two months of being born. Apparently newborn’s vision is limited to black, white and greys when it comes to color. Black and White Books help with the development of their vision and focus.
This has been one of our little one’s favorite toys. We named it Flappy and he is always one of our go-to-toys at home and on the road. We even bought a second one (different animal) hoping he would take to that one too whenever Flappy needs a clean.
Ever since he hit the 3 month these have become some of his go-to toys for two reasons. The first is that he loves the rattling and is constantly shaking them, and the second, he has now hit that phase where he wants to put everything in his mouth and these are safe for him to chew on. They are dishwasher safe and very easy to clean is well.
Our little one hated diaper changes, and so I bought this mobile would help keep him distracted: he wasn’t fooled. However, it became one of his favorite things when it came to hanging it over his bassinet, play yard and play gym. If he was fussy it would calm him, and if he was fighting nap time, it helped lull him to sleep.
You cannot go wrong with regards to picking children’s books and you can never have too many. You can find Children’s books everywhere: our collection was made up of books we bought on Amazon, Barnes and Nobles closing sales, Marshall’s and so on. But if you had to ask me what my favorite books are with regards to what we have in our collection, it would be the Little Golden Books (you can read the review).
The following are some of our little one’s favorite play-time toys and tools we introduced at 3 months to complement what he was already toying with (pun intended). These toys were not purchase to replace what he had to, but rather, to add to it and expand on his play time experience as his need for stimuli increased.
The moment he was able to pick this up, it became another one of his favorite indulgences. When he is not trying to eat it, he is shaking it and rolling it around. And like the Sassy My First Bend & Flex Rattle Set (2 Piece), this is another toy that is safe for him to try put in his mouth and very easy to clean.
This toy, along with the Sassy Wonder Wheel Activity Center below were the first toys which began to teach him cause and effect: he figured out. With the Baby Einstein Glow & Discover Light Bar Activity Station in” particular, he figured out, If I press any of these buttons, it makes a sound,” and now, the moment you put it in front of it, he just starts smashing it.
I bought this toy a little bit too early but now he has grown into it and he loves playing with it. Its got a suction cup that lets you stick it to any flat surface. This was one of the toys that helped him figure out cause-and-effect, a very major milestone. The moment he realized he could make it spin, he went to town.
Not sure how my fiance found this app, but its been one of our favorite developmental play tools. The great thing about this app is that it lets you DIY your little one’s playtime. The activities are great for bonding, fun to do and most importance, designed to help your little one hit those developmental milestones.
I hope you enjoyed my Baby Nursery Series and some of the content was something that you found to be informative and useful.
This New Dad,
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