Where to put Baby so that it doesn't see life as tedious - more Not-a-Mommy-Blogger advice
And it's even more awkward with babies than it is with chairs. At least a chair doesn't realise that it's been stuck in a dark corner and ignored just because once you got it home you found there really was no place for it. Babies somehow sense that they've been put in a dark corner and left for weeks to gather dust. I don't know what it is about them, but you have to admire them for it.
Anyway, even though, as you know, it is a zillion years since I could call myself a Young Mother, and Henry the Eighth was still on the throne when I was suckling my offspring while throwing chicken bones over my shoulder, I still remember what a difficult moment it is when you're standing in the middle of a room with a Baby which has been fed, watered and changed, and wondering, 'What the dickens do I do with this now?' Such a tricky moment! Yes, there's its cot or its pram or baby buggy, but, to be honest, it spends hours of each day in those, and as a Good Parent, surely you'd want it to have a change, otherwise years from now, it's going to turn round and say, 'Mother, you kept me from hunger and thirst, and you kept me clean, but, flip, I'd have gone without some of the stewed apple just for a look at something other than that stupid duck mobile on my pram.'
I'm here with some helpful suggestions that will not only entertain Baby but will be useful to you, too. What could be better?!
1 Everyone has on their piano or their mantelpiece a big vase of flowers which just needs that little something to finish it off. Often you buy a bunch of flowers at the market and find that you should have bought two, because the only vases you have are really too big and your chrysanthemums or freesias just look lost in it. Bingo! Add Baby! Just nestle Baby in at the front, arrange the flowers nicely to the left and right of its head, then hang Baby's arms over the edge to balance it nicely and complement your expert flower arranging. (There's nothing like a bit of symmetry to cheer one up, is there, especially when your nipples hurt like billy-oh?!) The other good thing about putting Baby in with the floral arrangement is that Baby can dabble its little tiny feet in the water all day long. All babies love to do this, and, what's more, it will make Baby's toenails nice and soft for when you cut them before bedtime.
Warning: If your vase contains a bunch of roses, please don't forget to tell Baby to mind the thorns - it's only fair.
2. Gosh, isn't it so annoying when Baby comes along and you run out of money because of all you have to spend on things for the new arrival! Poverty of this kind can be extremely frustrating, and what don't you need just as you're feeling so hard done by? That's right. You don't need all the foodstuffs in your freezer to be falling all over the place, just rubbing in the fact that you haven't been able to buy any new Ben & Jerry's walnut and toffee icecream or frozen salmon fillets for weeks, having had to purchase a cot, a highchair and fourteen thousand nappies. So, it's obvious. Use Baby to take up that extra room in the freezer, so that you can stack your fishfingers and your chicken thighs nice and tightly together to stop them rattling about. Just tuck Baby into one of the freezer drawers and then arrange the frozen packets around it. And, how convenient that babies are so flexible and have so many little nooks and crannies! Just when you thought there wouldn't be a place for that one packet of dried basil you froze last year, there's that little crevice just at the back of Baby's knee where you can tuck it. And, hey, suddenly, a solution for keeping the frozen raspberries from sticking together. Put them in between Baby's fingers and toes, and they'll be just right for arranging onto a cheesecake.
Warning: Baby may need an extra vest, and perhaps another pair of socks.
3. What a winter it's been in Britain! All that snow, and what do you get with snow? Yes. Draughts under all the doors. So, so irritating, especially when your living room is nice and warm and you're in a lovely soft chair, reading the newspaper, and the only bugbear is that Arctic wind sneaking under the door frame and making your feet like ice. Sorted! What are cuddly soft babies for if not to lie by the door for you and stop the draughts from playing around your toes? And, what's more, the good thing about this is that Baby can have a lovely sleep at the same time, and then, when it wakes up, be thrilled by the woo-woo sound of the wind as it whistles under the door. Babies love to experience Nature, and what better way than this? Of course, you may find that Baby moves around too much to keep the draught out completely (why do babies move so much?) but the solution to this is easy, and it's Why Swaddling Was Invented. Wrap Baby tightly up in a long piece of cloth (if you don't have swaddling cloths ready, elastic bandages will do the job, but be careful when you undo these not to do it too quickly as Baby could be catapulted against the wall, and that would be harmful). Sometimes it's hard to know whether you're doing the swaddling properly, but if you have one of those Guides to Moths and Butterflies nature books, look up 'pupa' and compare Baby with the picture (or see below). If you can't tell the difference, you're doing fine, and now you can just rest Baby by the door and sit back with your newspaper.
Warning: If Baby does insist on wriggling about, despite your expert swaddling, wedging it closer to the door with a heavy piece of furniture might solve the problem.
Do let me know how you get on with my suggestions. I mean, I'm not trying to be patronising or anything, but I know how much it helped me when I was a young parent and someone with more experience and skill took time to advise me. Drop me a line. Just think, with Baby nicely tucked up in the freezer, or by the door, you'll have so much more time to comment on people's blogs.