3 Games To Play With Your 3-Month-Old

Recently I had a great friend come over to visit my family. It was great catching up, and like all people who don’t have kids… they have questions.

Heck, I still have questions!

What Does He Really Do?

My favorite question that I get from almost all of my friends is,  “What does he do?”

I loved this question; because it is one I always asked. All my son seemed to do for the past two months was eat, cry, poop and sleep. I didn’t know how to play with him. Because of my experiences my response was “Honestly, they don’t really do anything.”

It’s true!

Don’t let anyone tell you different. Until a baby can smile at you on their own, not a reflex, there really isn’t much that they do.

Don’t get my wrong, you should smile, tickle and “play” with your baby as much as you can. This will help build not only your relationship, but also your child’s motor skills.

What a baby can do and what you can do with your baby are two totally different things – at least in my mind they are! If you don’t engage your baby then typically they are just laying there, staring into space, or at their hands if they have reached that stage (My son is fascinated by his hands right now).

Tobias playing with his hands...
Tobias playing with his hands…

Tobias still hasn’t developed his muscles enough to sit up yet, so our playtimes are limited to just a few activities. Here are 3 games my son loves so far.

3 games to play with your 3-month-old

  1. I’ve Got Your Nose

Yes this sounds like a trivial game, and your baby may not know what you are saying or doing, but you are engaging them with touch and sound. For my son I get as close to him as possible so he can look at me and watch my expressions then I touch his nose and say either I got your nose or Beep.

He loves it, a smile will spread over his face in a second and we can do that for 15 minutes before he gets tired of it.

Tobias playing I've Got Your Nose with momma!
Tobias playing I’ve Got Your Nose with momma!

My husband does a different game to this where he says he is going to “eat his nose” and will use his face to get a smile from Tobias.

This brings me to a side note, do you ever say, “I’m going to eat you up,” to your child? This saying really freaks me out and I recently just read an article that gave me a clue as to why people say that.

You should check it out!

Why Do People Want To ‘Eat’ Cute Babies? Scientists Say It’s Their Smell by Lizette Borreli on Medical Daily.

  1. Tummy Time Tug

Now if you haven’t tried Tummy Time then you are missing out. I even enjoy Tummy Time, but for an infant it has a lot of benefits. It not only helps them with their neck muscles, but it does also help with leg, arm and abdominal strength.

Tummy Time!
Tummy Time!

Since my son is a bit older now and has way better head control we took Tummy Time to the next level and added in some things for him to reach for. He loves reaching for the little toys and well – he just loves to be on his tummy.

On a good day he will do Tummy Time for about 10 minutes until he decided to roll over. If you really want to engage your child, get down on the floor with them and call their name to get them to look at you. As soon as eye contact is made you will be greeted with the cutest smile – I promise (unless you child absolutely hates Tummy Time that is!)

Tobias Tummy Time Tug - he loves reaching for the monkey!
Tobias Tummy Time Tug – he loves reaching for the monkey!

Note: this should be common knowledge, but just in case it isn’t please don’t leave your child alone while they are doing Tummy Time (or really ever!). They can get tired easily and if they drop their head they can hurt themselves.

  1. Dance Party

Now this game is self explanatory, but just in case – Pick up your baby and move! My son loves to dance with me. I will either hold him, or use a harness and we will dance around the house. Now this puts a smile on his face quickly, but it also overstimulates him.

That being said, only do this game in short bursts if you have a child that over stimulates easily. My son can personally handle this game for about 5 minutes then he is tired and wants a nap. It maybe a short game, but it keeps him alert and he is engaged with sound and touch while we are playing.

What To Do When You’re Done Playing

Keep in mind that every child is different and my experience is based of my child, but once games are done we typically have a cool down time. This is a time that we try and settle down right before its time for a nap.

Tobias personally likes to listen to music on his Boppy or laying flat on the couch. I have learned that nature sounds and classical music help him calm down (anything with words in it tend to overstimulate him once he is done with an activity).

Tobias was tired from all the fun we had!
Tobias was tired from all the fun we had!

Here is a link to Tobias’ Personal Favorites: Sleep, Baby Sleep by Twin Sisters Productions, and John Tesh Classical Music for Babies (and their Moms) by John Tesh.

If you have missed your window for cool down time and your child has reached the COMPLETELY OVERSTIMULATED phase of the day be patient and just hold them close. I have been there – a lot! I was having so much fun playing with my son that I didn’t watch him closely enough to realize he was just DONE!

Now It’s Your Turn

 Go and enjoy your infant and have fun!

I know I will!

What games do you like to play with your babies? Leave them in the comments below!

~Sarah

So Much For My Husband’s Best Friend…

It wasn’t long ago that I purchased a beautiful Chocolate Lab puppy for my husband. This puppy has been on my husband’s heart for a while. He has always wanted a good, loyal lab puppy. So being the awesome wife that I am, I got him one!Cooper& Robert Of course there is some back-story, but that is probably better to tell at another time. So let me jump forward a bit and tell you about Cooper. Yes,    he loves my husband, but he has become my constant comforter and a great and loyal companion. It seems that honestly, he is more of my best friend than what I had originally anticipated. Cooper will run to my husband to play fetch or tug, but when it is time to nap or he is just in the mood for cuddling, he is right there next to me. Personally, I find this to be great practice for when my son is born. Cooper is always with me in the morning when I am getting ready for work and he does everything in his power to stop me from walking out the front door…until I give him a stuffed Kong toy! My bond with this pup is so strong and that is why the events that occurred last Thursday broke my heart. We enrolled Cooper into a puppy training class, mainly for socialization. He is a smart dog and already knows a lot of the commands, but we wanted him to learn to listen to us around distractions. Last week he was meeting one of the other dogs, that was not a puppy, and the dog attached him. I am not going to name the breed of the dog since that only helps by stereotyping. This dog was new to his family, but he was not use to other animals and my poor, playful Cooper found out the hard way. The other dog did clearly try to engage him in play, but in a split second changed his mind. Thankfully the injuries were not that bad (They honestly could have been way worse if the dog would have whipped his head), but it was the cries that broke my heart. I held my Cooper as close as I could and got a real dose of what it felt like to be a caregiver. Cooper Cooper Like a mother whose child has been bullied, I swept him up into my arms and held him as tight as I could until he stopped his whimpering and crying. When we finally went home, all we did was cuddle. Poor pup even had nightmares that night. This whole situation really gave me perspective on who I am. I am not someone to sit back and watch people in pain – I act! I will do whatever is needed to help and show them the love and compassion we all deserve. It is funny how a story about a puppy can cause me to reflex on my own personality, but that is what happened. Oh and on a positive note, Cooper is doing just fine and is back in puppy classes. He even has a new best friend! For those of you wondering about the older dog he is doing fine as well and has been enrolled in a more advanced socialization class to help him confront his fears.

Now enjoy a quick clip of puppies playing. This is sure to make anyone smile!

Sarah