Bath Time Foam Blocks

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Veronika is sitting so well in her tub now that it felt like time to mix things up and add a new game to our standard splashy fun.

First, I used a set of foam building blocks, normally a playroom toy, as bath toys. These were great because I could push them down under the water and show her how they instantly pop back up.

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She got the idea right away! With each pop up, I made noises of surprise and delight, which soon had her doing the same.

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If you want, you can also purchase foam sponge toys intended for the bath. We love the animal bath toys set from 3 Bees & Me, which comes with a handy storage bag and features everything from a tiger to a squirrel to a kangaroo. These are large enough for the littlest hands to grip, even in slippery water.

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As with the blocks, I showed Veronika how to push them underwater and then watch them surface again.

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Of course they found their way quickly to her mouth, too. In sum, we’re excited to play with foam in many a bath to come!

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Feel the Wind

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Introducing your baby to the elements is a beautiful way to foster a lifelong love of nature. Since she was born just before winter, Veronika has already felt snowflakes, and the pitter-patter of raindrops. Now that it’s warmer, there are some new sensations I’ve been excited to introduce her to!

We had a windy but warm day today, which made it a nice day to let Veronika feel the breeze without getting a chill. It’s hard to tell in the picture above, but the leaves were whipping around! As we watched the leaves dance and felt the breeze, I signed “wind” for her as well.

Next, I sat her on a blanket in the grass simply to enjoy the feel of warm sunshine on her skin (don’t forget the sunscreen and a sun hat, of course!). “Sun” is another great sign to teach your baby, as are other general weather words like “clouds”, “rain”, and “snow”.

soccer fan

Later, I removed her socks and dangled her feet in the grass for that perfect sensation of tickly grass on bare feet.

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These sensations were just a brief intro to nature, and I can’t wait for all of Veronika’s nature firsts to come: the first leaf pile to jump in, smelling a flower, watching autumn leaves turn colors and fall. What are you looking forward to in nature with your baby? Please share in the comments!


Mango Sticky Rice

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On the heels of our recipe forĀ Pad Thai Noodles, Travis and I traveled back to Thailand in the kitchen today for dessert!

In a large saucepan, combine 1 cup sushi rice and 2 cups water. Bring to a boil, then cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer for 20 minutes. Turn off the burner but leave the rice in the pan.

Meanwhile, we checked out Raddish Kids’ detailed instructions on how to cut a mango. First, we squeezed our mangoes to make sure they were ripe. Yup!

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I cut the sides from the mangoes with a sharp knife but then let Travis take over with a butter knife. After showing him an example, he scored the mangoes like a tic-tac-toe board.

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Finally, use a spoon to scoop out the flesh. Travis needed a few bites right away, of course!

In a saucepan, combine 1 (13.5-ounce) can full-fat coconut milk, 2/3 cup sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat; continue to cook for 3 minutes. This step was another great chance to use the kit’s whisk!

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Ladle half of the coconut milk mixture into the cooked rice. Cover and let stand for 10 minutes, until the liquid is absorbed.

To serve, scoop about 1/2 cup rice mixture into a bowl. Drizzle with leftover coconut sauce and top with mango.

As Travis dined, we also read the recipe’s informative sections on Thai greetings and traditional Thai cooking equipment. How do you say delicious in Thai? Yum!

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