How to select toys for a child’s play (“yes”) space

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(Photo courtesy of Andy, Flickr Creative Commons)

How do you decide what toys to include in your child’s “yes”/play space?

While I could have subtitled this blog post “toys for a three-year old” or “what toys to buy for an 8-month old,” I realized that that would be missing the point.

“When setting up your child’s play environment, age-appropriate space and play objects are important considerations. It is best to provide an optimal learning environment according to your child’s stage of development.” (Your Self-Confident Baby, Magda Gerber.)

What I love about Magda Gerber’s approach to childcare and play is her emphasis on the unique relationship between parent and child, one that is built on respect, trust, and careful observation of the individual child. What interests my three-year old daughter might not interest yours; the same goes for my 8.5-month old son. So, instead, I’d like to share with you a list of some guiding principles that I have used to create a personalized “yes” space for each of my children. These are principles that have helped me choose what play objects to buy – or not – for my kids.

Be encouraged, friends. Continue reading

Traveling with Bebé

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Last week E. and I got to tag along with D. as he attended a work conference in South Lake Tahoe, Nevada. We decided to combine his work trip with a four-hour drive out to California to visit family.

I realize that there are endless blog posts on the InterWebs about traveling with an infant, many of which I found immensely helpful in planning my own trip: nurse during take-off and landing, pack light, bring lots of snacks, wear comfortable clothes, and other tips.

Well, four flights, two airport connections, one car ride, and 16 hours of travel time proved all of the above true.

They also taught me five other things I’d like to share with you about traveling with bebé. These are suggestions that I hope will make your next trip con bebé a bit easier and, of course, more fun! Continue reading