06 March 2009

Relax It's Baby Proof

Scrag is at that delightful stage of being into everything. It's been a while since we had to have everything baby-safed so we're kind of getting there in stages - but it takes a bit of getting used to!

I am of the "roam free" school of thought. I prefer to have things secure or out of reach and then I can relax and let the baby explore.

Apparently my mum used to subscribe to the other camp: "Leave things within reach and teach them not to touch..."
She still sadly recalls her collection of ornaments (wedding gifts) that used to decorate my nursery windowsill - til I smashed them all one by one.
To me this strategy is very worthy, but way too risky - never mind exhausting! Constantly jumping up and down - "Uh uh! No, don't touch!" and dragging them away. When they are so little, I say baby-proof as much as you can. Then let them have the fun of exploring their world. It's much more exciting for them than fancy toys (and costs less too).

At 10 months, Scrag is already taking steps (up to four at a time) and is getting more and more adventurous. Nothing can be left near the edges of tables or shelves; he can reach further than you think!
There are some things we can't do anything about, like the TV cabinet and the Fireplace. We use a deep firm tone and tell him "no, don't touch!" when he approaches those things. He definitely knows what that means, and always stops. But I don't want to spend all day telling him no, so in the rest of the house doors to potential danger get shut or secured.
When Scrag is awake, I try to remember to check that the toilet door is firmly shut at all times (toilets are sooo much fun!) The smack of the toilet seat and sounds of happy splashing are usually followed by "Arrrgghhh!! Who left the toilet door open???"

Scrag giggles delightedly as I drag him out (trailing yummy loo paper of course), hook the chewed up wad out of his gob and quickly wash his hands before they also get shoved in his mouth. Oi oi oi!

If I'm not quick enough I console myself with the fact that "experts" now tell us that Dirt is Good, and exposure to some germs helps build a healthy immune system!

In the last week we have also taken the following baby-proofing steps:

> Secure the sliding screen on the back door with a bungy cord (Scrag can now open the door, but can't yet negotiate steps safely)

> Tie all cupboard handles together with rubber bands to prevent general mayhem and ransacking (rolling potatoes from the pantry down the hallway is one of Scraggy's favourite games)

> Locate the kitchen-tidy under a chair so Scrag can't get the lid open (oh-so-many yummy treats to be found in the rubbish bin!)
> Re-install the lovely wire netting around the bannister on the deck (ugh; I hate that stuff; but safety before beauty, I guess)

> Constructing a makeshift gate from an old cot-side secured with rope and bungy cords so Scrag doesn't fall down the verandah steps and land on the concrete at the bottom (Princess's playhouse is out on the deck so Scrag is loving playing in that, opening and shutting the doors and windows).

It's all very cobbled-together but since he's our very last little baby, there's no point in outlaying loads of money to buy proper safety gates and latches, when they (hopefully) won't be needed for all that long. Rubber bands and bungy cords work fine, I tell ya!

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Penny said...

Yip I'm with you on letting kids roam free. It's too tiring trying to stop them. Benjamin loves foil...and toilet paper too. Love your new blog design!

Sammy said...

Oh my gosh, that's coming my way...is beginning to dawn on me how much of our house is NOT baby proof. Not sure about the roaming free bit but we'll see!

Sophie said...

Sounds like so much fun! Gee boys sound like MUCH more work or have I forgotten so quickly??? Love the new blog look Simoney!

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