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Thursday, March 8, 2012

Baby Treasure Basket

I have done it. I have started planning activities for Bam Bam. Some of you will think that makes me crazy. I choose to think that it makes me dedicated. I feel, and my bloggy friend Allison at Train Up A Child was saying the same thing about her boys the other day, that Bam Bam is old enough and interactive enough that I should be putting the same kind of care and love and thought into my time with him as I put into my time with Boogie. Thankfully, there are lots of other mommies crazy and dedicated enough that I have a lot of ideas already and cannot wait to get started. Bam Bam turns 9 months old next week but I couldn't wait. We are starting baby school NOW! Okay, well, tomorrow. He is asleep now and I am not going to wake up a sleeping baby just because I am excited to show him something :)

First, I have set up a shelf for Bam Bam in the living room. I am hoping it takes Boogie a little while to notice it is there since we spend most of our time in the kitchen and play room. When Boogie is sleeping, Bam Bam and I are often in the living room since he has the most space to roll around and he likes the fish tank. So, I took off the stuff of Boogie's that was on the bottom of our game shelf since he doesn't play with it anymore, and arranged some special things for Bam Bam.


On Bam Bam's shelf, there is a mirror, three touch and feel books, a fruits of the Spirit shape sorter, a container of plastic links, stacking cups, and, the crown jewel, a treasure basket.

The "treasure basket" is actually a "treasure pot" but that's fine for my purposes. I first saw this idea on Pinterest today, via The Imagination Tree, and knew I could throw one together when the boys went to bed. This is another Montessori-esque idea, much like sensory bins. Go to The Imagination Tree link I provided for details and a really clear explanation. I think this is perfect for spending time together with Bam Bam and keeping his interest because he is WAY more squirmy than Boogie was at this age and does not stay still as long with books. I think it is partly because we had more time for reading to Boogie since he was the first and only when he was Bam Bam's age. So, I am going to try to spend more focused one-on-one time with Bam Bam reading and exploring his treasure basket and other toys while he practices sitting. And I want to give him time to roll around since he is getting close to crawling. And we are starting simple table foods, like puffs, while we are eating. So there are a lot of fun changes with Bam Bam right now. I am sure that this is the most I have ever talked about Bam Bam in one post and it makes me happy! I hope all of you are ready for more fun with Bam Bam!

Here is my first baby school creation for Bam Bam.



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Inside Bam Bam's first treasure basket, he will find:

* red ribbon
* a washcloth
* a whisk
* a wooden car
* an empty chocolate chip package
* a silicone brush
* a wooden maraca
* a brush
* a necklace
* a calculator
* a ring full of keys
* an empty egg carton
* a glove
* a juggling ball
* a piece of felt
* a glass jar with split peas
* a glass jar with flat marbles
* assorted lids
* a DVD
* a feather
* a cymbal
* a cookie cutter
* a measuring spoon
* large pom poms
* a cardboard ring
* a small gift bag
* a gift bow
* a sponge
* a wooden instrument

Of course, since Bam Bam is a baby, he needs constant supervision, especially with non-baby items. Everything should be big enough that he can't choke on it, but he does have two teeth. I am going to watch very carefully, and if anything makes me nervous once he has it, I will just remove it. You know your baby and you know yourself, so if this is something that would just stress you out, it won't be fun for either of you. I am much more laid back with Bam Bam than I was with Boogie, and much more excited to let him get messy and try new things. But I am also a complete worry wart, so I am right there with the boys whenever they are playing with something that could cause a problem. The only things I can see as potentially causing trouble are the egg carton, the sponge, and the pom poms. Generally, when he is putting toys in his mouth, he is using his tongue and tasting them, not trying to eat them, so I am assuming that is what he will do with the items in the pot. But I will keep you posted!

Have any of you made treasure baskets for your babies? I would love to know what you put in them and how your kids like them! If you don't do treasure baskets, I would love to know what you do with your very little ones to spend special time with them when your older kids are busy/sleeping/out. I am idea-gathering for baby school and loving it :)

Linking up to these great parties!

20 comments:

  1. I loooooove this!!! I need to set something up for the twins. They will be eight months tomorrow. I don't want them to hurry up and grow up, obviously, but there are some ideas I can't wait to try with them. Thanks for linking back. :)

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    1. Your twins are so precious! I can't wait to see what you set up for them. Each new milestone with Bam Bam is so fun but it also is a reminder that he is not such a little baby anymore. He's my big little baby :)

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  2. lots of fun things to explore!!! my Bear used to love magazines! he would rip them, crumple them, stare at the faces! i bet Bam Bam will love this!

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    1. Boogie still loves to rip up magazines and paper and envelopes when I let him!

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  3. When my oldest was that age, he had a special basket on the floor in the living room with some of his toys and books, and I just rotated them. We would just sit down and explore whatever caught his interest.

    I sort of feel like my younger son "skipped" a lot of that baby stage. He spent the first six months in my arms, or screaming...and suddenly, once he was mobile, he wanted nothing more than to keep up with his big brother. He talks and plays and acts "older" because of his brother, and it makes me sad! So yes... definitely enjoy your one on one with Bam Bam!

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    1. Thanks for the thoughts, Brittney. Sometimes I feel like Bam Bam is more of a baby at this age than Boogie was, and I think it is because we have the two year old to compare him to, and he looks so little in comparison. But sometimes I feel like he is less of a baby and it is because he does love to play with Boogie and see what he is doing. They grow up so fast!!

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  4. Lovely to see you at The Kids Co-op today - and great ideas for the treasure basket. I've used them a lot with babies - they love them! I'm going to add your post to the Kids Co-op Pinterest board :)

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  5. I think it's great you are thinking about some items for your little one. I am currently looking after a 9 month old and she loves the treasure basket i have put together for her Ours is very much based on natural materials. giant pine cones, pebble, wooden apple shaped pot that they can open and close. lots of bits and bobs. I will try and get a blog post made up next week about her exploring it and then maybe you would like to pop over and see. http://wormseye-view.blogspot.com/

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    1. Hi, Pip! Thanks for stopping by again :) Your blog is in my feed, so I will keep an eye out for your treasure basket post!

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  6. I linked a friend to this page, and check it out:

    http://trialanderrormama.blogspot.com/2012/03/babys-treasure-box-project-in-progress.html?showComment=1331438946622#c539943991319036728

    :)

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    1. Thanks, Allison!! How fun to see that my post inspired someone!

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  7. Great ideas for a treasure basket/pot and baby shelf, Sierra! I featured your post at the Living Montessori Now Facebook page and added it to my treasure basket post at http://livingmontessorinow.com/2011/01/18/how-to-make-a-treasure-basket-for-your-baby/. I'm looking forward to reading more about your baby activities! :)

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    1. Thank you so much, Deb! I have a few things I am getting organized to post that I have put together for Boogie or Bam Bam, but I wanted to catch up on comments first :) And I am so happy to see that you have a whole treasure basket post! I have heard you should rotate the stuff out, similar to sensory bins, so I am glad that there is a whole list of sites I can go to. Thank you again for how organized you are!!

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  8. Great post, Sierra! I can't wait to hear more about Bam Bam!! Keep the ideas coming, in about a year I'll need them for sweet baby #3!

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    1. I am so excited for you! And you better believe Bam Bam is going to be featured more regularly in our activities now :) I am so happy to be a source of ideas for your third blessing!

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  9. Great idea! L is 15 months, but I still think he would enjoy this! Thanks so much for sharing on Thinky Linky Thursday!
    Lori

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  10. Great ideas!! Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday! I hope you share with us again this week!

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  11. Great basket. I think it's great that you are planning some intentional play actvities with your little one. Thanks for sharing on fun frugal friday.

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  12. I had fun re-visiting this, Sierra! I just added your photo to my treasure basket post at http://livingmontessorinow.com/2011/01/18/how-to-make-a-treasure-basket-for-your-baby/

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