Babies and toddlers – what do they really need?
Becoming a new grandparent has opened up the world of merchandise marketed towards this emotionally invested group of parents, grandparents, friends and family.
Your RAS – reticular activating system is set to look for anything remotely related to these little bundles of joy, but what do babies and toddlers really need?
In a nut shell these little people grow fast and their needs are very minimal and basic.
Food, comfort, sleep and a clean nappy is about all on their wish list.
Comfort can be cuddles, clean appropriate clothing and a cardboard box. Having a fancy nursery decked to the brim, does not guarantee your child will sleep or become a caring, generous and self-confident adult.
Stimulation can be in sought in non-commercial forms with colours, shapes and textures found around the home and garden. Use these early years to encourage their interest in the outdoors
Is gift giving the main way to express love?
Options to consider:
- Bank account – ask the parents to open a bank account and deposit the money you would have spent on a gift.
- Books – even babies will respond to being read to.
- Babysit – most parents will be forever grateful of a couple of hours to themselves, even if it is just to sleep or to read a book.
The push to provide all the latest gadgets and gizmos is overload for new parents who already feel overwhelmed with the wealth of information thrust their way.
Space in the home is at a premium with prams, cots and high chairs being all new additions to the décor and possibly cramping the available living space.
It is unnecessary to have baskets and boxes of excess when a few well-chosen toys is sufficient. Babies and toddlers are just as happy seeing the light through the trees or being sung a nursery rhyme.
Stop and think what impact your consumerism is having not just to the environment but to the child that you care for.