Playtime Evolution

10.21.10 9 weeks old

kate baby playtime 9 weeks.jpg

Short post this week--a certain someone is keeping me busier by the day!

It’s crazy to watch how Tucker changes from week to week. He’s suddenly a baby, not a newborn, and he’s really starting to enjoy playing. I don’t think he understands that he can connect with things yet, but he knocks against the swinging parts of his Ikea “baby gym” and then laughs, and he can lie under it for 20 minutes or so now before he gets bored. (Ha! Just now he pushed the whole thing forward about 5 inches!) We do tummy time a couple times a day, usually after he’s done playing with the gym, and it’s hilarious to watch him trying desperately to push himself forward as his sleeper-clad feet slip around on the play mat. He’s always had good head control (he’s been able to hold it up on his own practically since birth, and he likes sitting on my lap facing out, with my hands supporting his trunk a bit) but I still worry about making sure he gets enough time to strengthen those arms and figure out how to push up. It’s always easier when he’s on the Boppy vs. flat on the floor, so we do both.

I also tried introducing an actual toy this week, and though he ignored it the first time, yesterday he grabbed onto it and thrashed it around a bit. He even tried to bring it up to his mouth! It’s called the Winkel, made by Manhattan Toy, and if the Amazon reviews are anything to go by, it will likely be his favorite for many months ahead. It’s cleverly designed with lots of thin rubbery bits to grab onto and a very gentle rattle in the middle. Apparently it’s great for teethers because you can chill it in the fridge, and there’s no right/wrong way to hold onto it and get it into the mouth.

Since he’s so much more interested in everything around him these days, I also stuck one of his Wee Gallery art cards (I have the jungle ones, but there are a bunch of patterns, all darling) up next to the changing table, and I prop others up next to him sometimes. He really likes the parrot. I think.

Of course, all this extra awareness of the world around him also means he gets bored or frustrated more easily. We get lots of laughs and smiles, but he also cries in a way he never has before: Flat-out angry! If i could put words to it he would be saying “HELLO?! I WANT ATTENTION!” It nearly always stops the second we pick him up! Uh-oh...

Kate Flaim is a freelance journalist and food blogger based in Cambridge, Mass. When she's not cooking or writing, she is gearing up for the arrival of her first child this summer.