Approved by the What’s Up Moms Medical Advisory Board
Things are verrrry busy over in the Cuteness Department. For one thing, you may catch baby bopping to music, and, man, oh man – there really are no words. Then there’s the clapping and waving. And in coming weeks you’ll start to see baby using objects correctly. Hand her a hairbrush or a phone and she’ll soon begin to mimic the adults around her (i.e. you) by “using” the thing as it’s meant to be used. So, it’s official now: she’s way better than a Cabbage Patch Kid.
She may be pulling herself up on, well, everything — furniture, peoples’ legs — but don’t be surprised if she suddenly starts wailing after realizing she’s stuck standing up with no idea how to sit back down. Bend at the knees, girl! (In her defense, it’s harder than it looks.) Crawling skills are on point, though, and she’s exploring every forgotten nook and cranny of your home, so batten down the hatches. And, uh… sweep. Good idea to reassess your baby-proofing now that your kid is a human Roomba. Use the Toilet Paper Roll Rule: anything small enough to fit in a toilet paper roll is a choking hazard.
On the food front, practice patience. Just because baby tosses a particular food off the high chair doesn’t mean you should toss it from the rotation. Bring it back later. It can take many repeated exposures to any given food for baby to develop a taste for it.
A great toy for this stage is the activity center. Imagine an exersaucer but free-standing, so baby can crawl on up to it and play around its perimeter — not unlike a swim-up bar. And that overflowing recycling bin of yours? It’s a goldmine. Egg cartons, oatmeal canisters, and diaper boxes (for tunnels, obvs) may be your trash, but they are absolutely her treasure.
By now if your baby still can’t soothe herself to sleep at bedtime or is waking many times a night, you might want to check in with a sleep consultant or choose a sleep book whose methods sound right to you. Honestly, the process of sleep training is not usually as awful as people think it will be, and moving forward with a sleep plan will be good for baby and you. The days are long and chock full of action – it’s about time you and baby both had some nice, restorative Zzzzzzs.