I love the newborn blob stage. They are just so little! And as a blob, you're probably wondering what sort of toy could they possibly need? All they want is their mama. And your right. Those first few weeks are all about being as close to mum as possible and milkies on demand (breast, bottle or tube whatever works for your family I say!). But once they start to open their eyes more and notice
the world around them expands beyond mum, there are some things you can do.
The Play GymEvery baby needs a play gym! During those small awake windows in between each feed and sleep, when mum is desperate for a coffee, you can lay baby underneath a play gym where they can begin to stretch and explore while laying on their back. These tend to really vary in price. You’ll see some brightly coloured ones that sing and dance – steer clear of these! They have way too much going on and can easily overwhelm a child. This baby has
just entered the world remember… they don’t need to be dazzled, they are just amazed by their plain old surroundings as it is. The reason we love a play gym though as opposed to just plonking baby in the middle of the lounge room rug is that babies can only see 20-30cm in front of them in the beginning therefore it is important to have a relatively close visual. The toys that hang off these
are also excellent as baby begins to flail their arms and legs around and experience touch when they hit them. First by accident, but then as they learn to control their limbs more they will learn they can hit and eventually grasp them.
Here is one of our favourite play gyms:
Ikea Leka Play Gym
Why we love it?
- Beautiful simple wooden toys. The colours are bold and include black but are not overwhelming for newborn vision. The hanging pieces are also removable so you can tie on other toys or ribbons to keep things interesting for bub.
- There are visual stimuli on the sides. These are great for encouraging babies to turn their heads from side to side.
- It’s super light and compact. Great for moving around the house so baby is always with you.
- There is no mat! - for mamas with refluxy babies, I got you. The no mat means you always have a play gym and just need to wash the blanket/towel you use underneath it. I can’t begin to tell you how annoying it was every time my twins spewed (which was literally all the time!) and I would have to take apart our play gym to wash the mat… meanwhile I had nothing whilst I was waiting for the mat to dry as our play gym wouldn’t stay upright without being connected to the mat. First-time mum rookie mistake there!
- There are only 2 legs. This is important because as baby becomes more mobile, their legs tend to get caught in awkward places. The 2 legs mean the baby can move around more freely and is less likely to get trapped. This is unfortunately one of the issues we see with the Kmart play gym which looks beautiful and minimalist but unfortunately is just not a practical long term solution.
Newborn Black and White Card Set
Did you know that newborns can only see in black, white and shades of grey? It’s not until a couple of months later that their colour vision starts to develop. That’s why we love black and white card sets. These include a set of high contrast images that are designed specifically for newborns. They are super simple to use and babies absolutely love them! I personally loved using these during tummy time for my babies. I would prop them up to encourage
the baby to lift their head and build that all-important neck strength to see it. I would also put them propped up on either side of their head to encourage the baby to turn their head from side to side. This is one you have got to try. It is just amazing to see newborns suddenly focus intently on these cards.
To learn more about the importance of high contrast cards, I highly recommend this video on YouTube - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DtvJGw-J4nU .
These are also available in our store now. Click to shop now.
Newborn Black and White Sensory Ball
Again, we love this one because of the high contrast colours! An excellent first toy for a baby. It feels beautiful and is just a really simple one that you can easily pop in the nappy bag or pram to take with you anywhere.
These are available in our store now. Click to shop now.