If you have an infant, then you probably already know about the "changing table wiggles (or maybe I should say -woes)". Simply described: you place your infant on the changing pad and instantly the body of the child becomes a twisting, grasping mass where anything remotely close by (and even some things you thought were unreachable) is considered fair game in said infant's eyes.
Solution? Well, you could always put toys nearby, but then they might not be readily available for play later on when you need them. And who really wants to wash a teddy bear or toy that came into accidental contact with a dirty diaper? Not I.
Then I had an "AHA!" moment.
Now, I am not sure when the "aha" moment actually occurred - but does it really matter? What is more important is that I HAD an "aha" moment. :)
I had been storing up a few small Gerber baby food containers because they just seemed so perfect for...well...for something. So I thought, why not put objects inside them to create noise, glue them shut and keep a few close by to hand the baby as a distraction during a diaper change. And of course, I didn't want them to look...well.."blah", so paint would have to be involved. Thus, "busy baby blocks" were born.
Now, before I tell you how to make these easy, peasy "blocks" - PLEASE keep two things in mind:
1. NEVER leave your baby alone with these. I tried to make these safe in case my baby did manage to pop one open, but they are NOT something I would be comfortable throwing in a crib or pack-n-play while I have my back turned away.
2. These are not the "holy grail" of distraction. Yes, they may keep your child occupied for a bit - but eventually (like most toys) your child will outgrow them or just start looking for another sparkly or noisy thing nearby. Don't be discouraged - just eat some chocolate and think of this as an opportunity for finding another creative solution. :) But in the meantime, enjoy the moments when your baby is enthralled by his/her new "busy baby blocks".
1. Paint the INSIDE of the Gerber container and lid. If you want to have a two color design, paint with one color first and let it dry. Then go back over the inside with a different color (see photo below).
P.S. My daughter helped me paint some of these, so this might be a fun activity for older siblings to work on with you. :)
IMPORTANT: Don't paint the inside rim of the lid that overhangs when the container is closed. That part is exposed to the outside ultimately and thus exposed to baby's mouth. Your paint SHOULD be NON-TOXIC, but who really wants paint of any sort in their baby's mouth?
2. Add items to each container.
3. Working rapidly with your glue gun, make a line of hot glue along the edge of the container and quickly press the lid onto the container.
4. Check the entire block to make sure all paint on the outside has been removed. Check to make sure the lid is really secure on each block.
5. Place in a box or basket close to the changing table and let your baby enjoy!
BTW: I am participating in a blog contest for the top 25 creative mom blogs and would LOVE it if you would cast a vote for me! :) The button is on the sidebar and you don't have to be a member or sign up or anything to vote - just click the button which takes you to the site and cast your vote. You can vote once a day so if you feel extra generous and want to cast a vote on another day - I would LOOOOVVVVEEEE it if you would! Thanks so much!