Keeping a baby happy can be quite a challenge so it’s important to fill up your parenting toolkit with… heck, with whatever works! Hubby and I put together a list of the top five tips and tricks we use to keep Babe content. Hopefully some of them will work for you too!
1. Use The Bait and Switch
This is one of my favorites. No baby enjoys having a toy taken from them. Even when the toy that they’re having so much fun playing with is not a toy at all! If your child gets their hands on something dangerous or, even worse, one of your expensive gadgets, you’ll probably be in quite a hurry to get it out of their hands. But be careful how you do that. The last thing any caregiver wants to see is this face:
So what do you do? Whenever we need to take away something that’s caught Babe’s fancy, we make sure to swap it out with something safe like one of her favorite toys for example this Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Click ‘n Learn Remote.
If baby always cries when a parent leaves, try having the caregiver take baby to another area so baby doesn’t see the parent leave. This has worked wonders for us. For some reason, it’s seeing the parent walk away that upsets Babe so much. When Babe is brought into another room, I guess she just assumes that Mom and Dad are where she left them.
3. Have a Car Routine
Get a kids CD that you can tolerate and start playing it on car rides from Day 1 or as soon as you read this note.
Husband loves They Might Be Giants so we put their kids albums on our baby registry. I really enjoyed Here Come The 123s so I found myself listening to it pretty often when Babe was tiny. I can only assume the reason that Babe calms down as soon as I press play is that she is used to hearing her music in the car so now we don’t leave home without it.
We also don’t leave home without Babe’s favorite car toy so we suggest you find a car seat toy that your baby likes, preferably one that has lights and sound. We grabbed the Bright Starts Lion Take Along Carrier Toy Bar on a lark and we are so glad that we did! As long as we have her tunes on and her toy in sight, Babe is a happy camper, or I should say, a happy car rider! She loves her toy so much that we even started taking it into restaurants to help keep her occupied. Of course, then we found ourselves forgetting to strap it back on the car seat before beginning a car ride. When we saw the Bright Starts Frog Hop Along Carrier Toy Bar for just a couple of dollars at a garage sale, we picked it up as well.
4. Be Funny
Babies love slapstick. No matter what is wrong, if Hubby jumps up and down, flaps his hands, and exclaims “Ta-da!” Babe will start cracking up like she just witnessed the funniest thing in the world.
5. Be Flexible
These tricks work most of the time but every once in a while there’s not one easy way to make Babe happy. We’ll try all the different tricks we know and usually a few of them will work for a few minutes each. In times like this we just keep trying to distract Babe as long as we can until she forgets why she was unhappy or she’s ready to go to bed.
What tips or tricks do you have for keeping your baby content?