Ah! Mommy, I just saw you babble like a baby to make the little one smile. You are your angel’s soul mate as you are equally childlike … you make faces, mimic sounds, cuddle, tickle and roll making hay as well as storing such cute memories for a lifetime. It’s play time all along…
The trick that works the best to make the little one laugh is of course peek-a-boo.
Oh! The magnitude of sounds the baby makes when mommy’s face pops in and out of her vision. She knows mommy is there even if she cannot see her. My little one would play it her way by putting her little hands on her eyes and removing them to flash a smile. She would seek refuge behind the smallest of objects like a soap or a powder tin and her towel. Oh! We would go berserk at her antics. At seven months she would find peeku (peekaboo) very funny and make crackling sounds while laughing over it.
TODDLING ALONG MISCHIEF
Toddlers are ideal players and at their mischievous best with thrills. They hide, make sounds, feign stress and do whatever comes to their little minds. They toddle with the speed of light and give a shrill cry that would shake even your neighbour from deep slumber. But life is a game to be enjoyed at this stage.
Just everything becomes a prop to shake a leg or do the bum jig and these little frolics invite roars and laughter ripples. This is the power of the present moment wherein you live completely and love every single moment at its best. Stay blessed mommy … may the little one make you smile like this always.
PLAYTIME WITH TOYS
Toys come next as they are great mates to be with. The ‘hello toy’ is the most sought after. Yes! Just anything becomes a phone for mommy and baby. Babies try to grasp, hold and lick toys. They show their preferences too because as little beings they have favourites. Here be cautious to have washable toys that do not have buttons, popped out eyes or nylon hair. In fact the cloth used should have fast colours. The simpler the toys the better and safer they prove to be for the baby.
In fact homemade stuffed toys from mompreneurs may just be the best choice. They are created with the wisdom and experience of mothers. The toys look so cute that they get the instant attention of the baby and are safe even when chewed or licked by the little one once in a while.
I still remember a doll stitched well by a mompreneur that was made of towel cloth in bright shades of red, green and blue. It was a big fat doll with the cutest smile on earth. Tanya befriended it as her best pal and believe me Chamki even accompanied my little one to play school. Chamki was the best chum Tanya ever had.
SINGING AND RHYMING
It is good fun to sing especially when you don’t feel like following your hurricane. But music cannot be imposed just like that. I felt that music always attracts. On a feverish day or a bad day I would sing the swan song just like that and successfully trick little Tanya to sit up with me. Tanya enjoyed the soft ones like, “Silent Night” as well as the loud and entertaining “Old Macdonald had a farm ….. and while Tanya would bring out toys like the roaring yet shabby lion , the beakless bird that managed to tweet, battered mother duck that quacked ….” I would just make sounds and enjoy some rest. This is great fun even when children are not too well. Songs keep little ones in great spirits.
SPEEDING TO EXPLORE
Toddlers are akin to a whirlwind. Oh! How frequently my mom’s warnings would ring in my ears “be careful… be alert.” But honestly many a times it was late as my baby was faster than me. As a toddler Tanya was most unpredictable. She would instantly become the fast paced fighter jet ready to bombard and then apply brakes to be still. To begin with I could not cope up. I followed her with the same pace and almost hurt her when she decided to stop suddenly.
Next she would look up for something or try and make conversations with things atop bookshelves or simply out of reach. With the cutest smile she would extend her little arm …open her fist and then close it as if to beckon. Oh! What a sweetheart she would be … talking to old books … or the lizy on the wall.
Tanya would again look here and there …spot a chair …. hold on to it and stand and whoa! One day she lifted her leg, rested it on the chair and looked up as if to measure the distance between her little self and the objects on the shelf. Daily she toiled to reach up somehow and then finally one day….believe me….she did climb up!! As a young mother I was more excited about her achievement and shrieked with joy and my angel toppled with shock!! Moral of the story is to let them explore without stark reactions.
AVOIDING LITTLE MISHAPS
Our home was like the abode of a child with lots of space, safe corners, and entertainment through toys, play time and funny interactions. But to be honest I was not born with this wisdom. Some initial mishaps and habit patterns of Tanya helped me understand her better. While playing she rolled and rocked into the wooden door… a big blue bump was the reward we both were honoured with.
She would playfully poke her tiny fingers just everywhere. It all began with my mouth and eyes during the peekaboo session but little did I know that she would aim the sockets too. The first time we were lucky due to the power cut but since then I was on my toes keeping the hawk’s eye on the little tyrant with Captain Adorable (daddy) covering all sockets with tapes. By nine months she learnt to trot or tip toe with ease. Yes! She locked her daddy in the bathroom and next punished him further by bolting the door of the bedroom. Moral of the story … she could do this to herself in future.
LITTLE ONES AS TEACHERS
Children are the best teachers because they are natural. Yes! They are so complete with purity and unconditional love … no wonder they are beautifully described as divine forms in our lives. I realized that my little girl was so quick to forgive and forget. She taught me to smile amid tears. Yes! Tanya toppled from my lap and I noticed her shock … I simply picked her up and hugged her. Daddy just looked into her face and did a clown act and she smiled and blew him a kiss. Children do it so beautifully. After this one episode she would fall, cry and smile to forget it. We learned to pat her when she laughed and she continues to laugh her blues away.
Philosophical leanings are realized later on but believe me this journey is nothing short of monkey business and playing the clown. Playtime helps to gel well and enjoy this joyous ride.