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Infant - Week #34

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A 34-Week-Old At A Glance

By Amy Salatino, edHelperBaby

  Don't Save Me!
           Your whole goal in life is to keep your baby safe from any dangers that may come her way.  Therefore, it is incredibly difficult to allow her to make mistakes and sometimes even fall down.  At this stage in development, allowing her to make these mistakes is crucial for her success at learning from them.  Let her put the block in the wrong hole, let her chew on her cup upside down, and even let her fall down.  All of these things are huge learning experiences for her, and they'll also make her stronger and more resilient as she grows.


  Let's Play Catch!
           Does it seem like you give your baby a toy to play with and before you can turn around, she has thrown it back at you or dropped it on the floor?  She has figured out how to throw things and to her it's a game.  Her timing isn't good enough that she is going to harm anyone or anything with her throws.  The worst thing that can happen at this point is that your patience with picking those toys up will wear out!  Hang in there...she isn't trying to drive you crazy; she's just doing her job...learning and playing!


  Stranger Anxiety
           Being unsure of strangers and separation anxiety might have been present for a month or so now, but it's about to reach new heights.  Be prepared to be at a social event and have your baby single out a particular stranger that she doesn't like.  She may get hysterical every time this person enters the room.  It will cause you all kinds of embarrassment and feeling bad for that person, but it's completely normal, and if you deal with it right, it can even be a little amusing!  Keep in mind it's a phase that will pass, not necessarily soon, but it will pass!


  Item Of The Week:  Sippy Cups
           There is a huge aisle of baby feeding gear at your local baby superstores just waiting to be perused.  This week you're looking for the perfect sippy cup for your baby.  She is completely ready to begin drinking water from a cup now, and it's even a great way to keep her occupied while you're eating.  Look for a cup with a soft spout to begin with so she doesn't bang her gums; many will be labeled as such.  Some babies will pick up using a sippy cup up right away and others may take time- months.  All babies are different, but early and frequent exposure will help!


  Do Try This At Home - Cause And Effect Toys
           Your baby has a beginning grasp on cause and effect.  She understands that when she is holding onto a toy she can drop it and it will fall and usually someone will pick it up for her.  Help her develop this understanding further by exposing her to toys that require her to perform some kind of action which will cause an effect.  Pull out the jack-in-the-boxes or the pull toys or toys with buttons and bells and whistles.  Teach her that if you pull the string, the toy will move closer. Show her that if you turn the crank, the guy will pop out of the box, and if you hit the buttons, you will be rewarded with some kind of sensory stimulus.  This is a big developmental skill that will develop on its own, but with some encouragement it will develop faster and it's lots of fun, too!


Cause And Effect With Max
           I pulled out a few cause and effect toys with Max one day while I was making dinner.  I sat down while I waited for my water to boil and showed him how a few worked.  I had a little puppy on wheels that barks and waddles over when you pull the string, I had a peek-a-block box that you drop the blocks in and it sings and lights up, and I had a Winnie the Pooh jack-in-the-box where Pooh himself pops up when you turn the crank.  I also had a simpler little "radio" with buttons on its face that set off bells and whistles when pushed.  I sat with Max for just a few minutes and showed him all the toys.  Then I left him right there on the kitchen floor five feet away while I worked on dinner to see how he would react.       

       He started with the puppy because that was the closest thing to him.  He bypassed the string and pulled it over by his ear which caused it to roll towards him and bark.  I thought this was hysterical because even though I had just showed him the dog, he seemed so surprised, almost scared, by the bark.  Then he did it again, realized that he was making it do that, and cracked up.  It was so cool to see.  He played with the puppy for a while, more chewing on it than anything else, and then moved on to the jack-in-the -box.  He knocked it over and got bored with it pretty much instantly.  This made sense to me.  I know his fine motor skills are not at a point where he could turn the crank even if he wanted to.  I'll pull Pooh out again in a few months and give him a try again.  Max moved on to the peek-a-block toy which he batted around for a minute or two before he found the radio.  The radio was by far the most age appropriate, and Max had a blast hitting the buttons and reacting to the bells and whistles and the other stimuli that it produced.  There was no doubt in my mind that he knew that he was causing the sounds by hitting the buttons and this was so much fun to watch!  This was a great play session with Max even though I was a mere observer and...dinner got done too. Bonus!  Do try this at home!


  That's Questionable
           Q - What baby gear are you DONE with?       

       It seems like not that long ago I was washing tiny onesies and getting the crib ready for my new baby.  Now I'm putting stuff in storage for my sisters-in-law to "inherit"!  How did that happen so fast?       

       We are completely done with the cradle and have been for a while; still it sits in the corner of my room as it has for the past four years.  I've gotta get that up to the attic soon.

       Max doesn't use the swing at all anymore, so that's a goner.  We are done with the exersaucer and have moved on to the jumperoo, but even that doesn't have much time left.  I stored the high chair away and moved to a much more space effective booster chair.  Hmmm...what else...the pack and play has been gone for months.  The bouncy seats I still use while I work out in the morning but am seeing Max's ability to last for any worthwhile amount of time sitting still run out very soon.  Of course, we are flying through sizes of clothes; Max is in a six-nine month now, so the bins of newborn clothes have been packed away.       

       Time flies when you are having fun, I guess.  I have to admit when my oldest daughter went through a stage where she was "done" with something, I was saddened by it and hated that she was past that stage.  With Max I am a tiny bit saddened by it but at the same time a little grateful to get some of this gear out of my family room!



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