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New Toys

In Baby L news, she has recently become obsessed with iPhones.  Mine, Hubbs...and now, hers.  Yep, that's right.  My baby has her own iPhone.  No data plan, of course.  It doesn't even have a SIM card.  But it does connect via WIFI to our home network and I have downloaded some free baby touch apps for her to play with.

No, this is not a brand new phone.  This is my old 3GS.

And I think we're a bad influence on our baby, because she is obsessed with this thing.  As in, she will play that same app over and over and over again and when I try to distract her away or take it away, she yelps in protest and then the theatrics ensue.

Is this the new TV-as-babysitter problem?

Suffice it to say, we need to be very careful about how we use the iPhone in her presence/view, and also monitor how much time we spend on them, because little eyes are watching, and learning.

YIKES.

Baby L has also developed an affinity for Hubbs' laptop, probably because she sees him on it often.  We didn't want her slamming the buttons on our precious Macbooks so I dug up my old PC (a 2005 Toshiba dinosaur) that we were going to recycle but hadn't gotten around to taking in, and we reformatted the old beast for her.  Now, it runs Windows XP.  And that's it.  We suspect we need to install a bunch of other drivers to this thing to get it to even detect our WIFI, and, well, we can't really be bothered right now.  Plus, Baby L loves just slamming on the keys and listening to the error beeps emitted from the thing whenever she tries to do anything.

The only downside is that she doesn't realize how unsturdy the monitor is, and sometimes she will try to bear all of her weight on it so that she can climb on the laptop or stand up.  Not cool, kiddo.  That will one day be the end of the machine, since I'm pretty sure it cannot withstand that much weight and it isn't designed to lay flat when opened.

For now, we're glad our laptops have been spared, and Baby L has a techno toy to play with.  She's not nearly as obsessed with this one as with the iPhone (maybe because we also spend less time on our laptops than on our phones), so that's a relief.  She's just happy to pound her meaty hands on the keyboard regardless of what is on the screen (nothing but the MS blue background), and we're happy to appease her in a way that isn't addicting.

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Baby L has discovered her love of books.  Unfortunately, she drools more than she reads at this point, and so we find it rare that she can sit long enough for us to finish reading a book to her (which I do in English and then translate into Canto - so it takes twice as long).  Her most favourite recent read?

I hope that as she grows, her love of reading will flourish since both Hubbs and I were total bookworms growing up.  For now, however, we're just happy she will be entertained by a book (whether as a teether or a reader) as much as by her iPhone.

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Our space is still limited, so we have no room for giant gym mats and a bazillion play toys.  Thankfully, we live in close proximity to the YMCA, and the one that is downtown is very new (2.5 years old) and very family-friendly.

We recently purchased a family membership that allows us access to the pool and the gym and the facilities for hosting birthday parties and the Toy Lending Library, plus their Family Play Time room during certain hours of the day.  This room has padded foam tunnels and hills that Baby L can climb, plus a bunch of new toys that we don't have at home.  The best part of all? Other babies.  Her age, even, which helps reduce our fears that our kid will be anti-social or not know how to relate with other peers because she's constantly around adults.  Baby L has been uber-friendly and curious, and has enjoyed every visit we've had to the room since we bought the membership.  There are a few babies in the room that she has also taken a shining to, including a little boy named Dawson that she kept following around.

So, as our little baby grows and learns, we have been finding new toys and ways to keep her challenged and entertained, without spending tons more money and using up more of our precious little floor space.

If you live in a smaller home, what do you do for toys to keep your baby challenged?



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