July 3, 2017

Dealing with baby drama...


*This post is sponsored by DockATot and Elfin Marketing, but all opinions are my own.*



At 8 months old, Vivian has reached one of the more demanding phases in her life.  She demands to be held as much as possible...and not just by anyone, by me and me alone.  She has been a daddy's girl for most of her life and has loved on everyone that has held her, but now she has a conniption fit if anyone else holds her while she can see me.  Seriously, I should have named her Scarlet O'hara because of her drama.  I am trying to enjoy this stage, because who doesn't love being someone's favorite...but being someone's favorite, especially when that someone is a very heavy and dramatic 8 month old, is exhausting after a while.  I've got things I need to do like cook supper, fold laundry and prep clothes and bottles for the next day.  Here are a few tricks that I try in efforts to get Vivian to play on her own for a bit while I handle whatever task is at hand.




| T O Y S |

This is an obvious one, I realize that.  I am not trying to reinvent the wheel.  It is important to place your baby somewhere safe and comfortable and to be intentional about which toys are available to your baby for the sake of entertainment.  Vivian does not like feeling enclosed, so a pack and play is not the best.  She really likes to be in her DockATot Grand while playing.  It is comfortable and soft, yet structured.  I try to be strategic about how many toys I have out for her at one time.  I used to have all her regular toys out and readily available to her at all times.  What I have found works better is to keep some of them out of sight for a while so she is not used to playing with them.  If I am in the middle of cooking supper and she starts whining to be held, because she is bored with the toys she has been playing with, I can get out the toys that she hasn't played with in a day or so to keep her entertained for another 10-20 minutes.




| M U S I C |

Vivian loves music.  She is just like her brother and is learning to appreciate talented musicians at an early age.  At the moment, she gets down to John Mayer and Leon Bridges.  She will raise her hands up and down and attempt to clap while the music plays.  I always make sure to have her in a safe place, like in her DockATot™ Grand on the floor near where I am.  The DockATot Grand helps prevent injury if she loses her balance while dancing or moving, her head will not hit the hard floor.  She really loves to watch me dance and listen to me sing along.  Again, to win more time, I am strategic.  First, I let the music play alone and do nothing, but cook or clean or whatever it is I am trying to get done.  I try not to make a lot of eye contact with her because that is the easiest way to remind her that she is not being held.  Then when she starts to fuss a bit, I start dancing and clapping a little while I am finishing up the task at hand.  Once she grows bored with that, I will start singing along which will buy me a little extra time until she has had enough and will settle for nothing more than being held.




| U S E    T H E   O T H E R   O F F S P R I N G |

I try to never make it my son, Bubba's, responsibility to entertain his little sister, but it does take a village.  If you have more than one child, the sibling is one of the biggest weapons in your arsenal for keeping your baby entertained.  Bubba is always telling us how he wanted his sister first...meaning he wanted to have a sister before we even considered having a second child...and he is absolutely right.  He was begging for a baby sister at 2 years old and I have video to prove it.  So my argument to him when I need him to play with her for five minutes is "Like you said...you wanted her first...now you got her!"  Most of the time, I do not have to convince him.  He loves to make her laugh by dancing crazy, making funny faces or tickling her.  Even Bubba likes the DockATot Grand.  It is meant for ages 9-36 months, but he is so tall and slender that they both fit in it comfortably.  He really loves to snuggle with Vivian in the DockATot Grand while watching a movie. 



| L E T   H E R   C R Y |

In the wise words of Hootie & the Blowfish "Let her cry..."  At the end of the day, babies need to learn how to play independently little by little.  No one can hold their baby all of the time, nor should they in my opinion.  I never let her cry for too long, but I try to let her work it out a little bit on her own.  When I do this, I want to make sure she has a completely safe space to unleash that is close to me so that she does not feel abandoned.  When she is mad, she throws her head back and kicks a lot.  The DockATot™ Grand helps ensure she stays safe and does not injure herself in her rage over not being held. 



DockATots have a been a lifesaver in our household.  They are made in Europe with breathable, washable, hypo-allergenic materials. We used the DockATot™ Deluxe+ from the time Vivian was two months old until she was seven months old.  Now, we use the DockATot Grand for everything from naps to play time.  It is so versatile and very portable.  It is easy to move anywhere in the house and to take on trips.  We have a beach trip coming up in a few weeks and you better believe we will be taking this little piece of magic with us.  It will help Vivian feel at home in the hotel, which normal make her feel uneasy.  I imagine the DockATot will be really helpful in her transition from the crib to a toddler bed in a couple years as it will provide that sense of security as she transitions from a cozy crib to what seems like a large and open toddler bed. 




How do you help your baby learn to play independently and safely?

To my American friends, family and readers: Have a happy and safe 4th of July tomorrow, y'all!  


Pin it for later!

2 comments:

Vivacious Mum said...

Vivian is adorable. My daughter officially became a teenager this year and I miss her as a baby. I know it's easier said than done, but enjoy this while it last. I wish I could go back in time and enjoy these moments.

AngieG30 said...

So sweet. I remember when my kids were that age. Funny, they still have their moments when I'm the only one... But you are right, using siblings... key!