June 20, 2014

How to Choose a Baby Gym - Tiny Love Gymini Developlace

Want to know how to choose the best baby play gym?  I'll show you how with tips to pick the best baby gym.  Thanks to Tiny Love for sending me this Gymini Developlace to check out.

Do you remember the days when words like teething necklace, Gymini and meconium were not in your vocabulary?  Yeah, I don't.  Probably because a motherhood induced coping mechanism prevents me from having full clarity of life before Kayla.  Also, I don't remember what I had for breakfast yesterday.   Now that we've gotten to easy with one fairly self sufficient 5 year old it just made sense to totally start all over again.  Not.

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But we are...and I couldn't be happier.  So as a person who is freakishly fascinated by baby gear regardless of whether my family is all babied up or not, I'm super excited to be jumping back into the world of all things baby.  And I did some ooohing when I saw the very new, very versatile Gymini Developlace from Tiny Love. Apparently, so did Kayla.  Then she proceeded to crawl inside it and claim it as her own.  Getting territorial, are we?

It only seemed fair to have a more age appropriate child check out the Gymini Developlace.  This little guy (borrowed!) loved it and was pretty entertained.  Which got me thinking that I should throw some tips out there for how to choose a baby gym. Because honestly, when you have a new baby there is nothing better than a device that offers enough entertainment to allow you to shower in peace.  However brief that shower may be...

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How To Choose A Baby Gym

 Do NOT Fall Victim To A Theme That Matches Your Nursery

Yep, rule number 1. It's so easy and tempting.  I like to match.  I really do, but do not fall victim to the cute matchy-matchy themed baby gym that somehow goes with your crib bedding.  Take a look at the toys that come attached to it.  You're not going to want 5 cuddly jungle themed plush animals.  You want variety.  Different textures, toys of different lengths and of course ones that do different things like rattle, crinkle or chime.  The Gymini Developlace has a nice assortment of toys that are included and you can also clip on others like this 


Make Sure You Can Reposition All Of The Toys

You should be able to reposition the toys in nearly any configuration so you can adjust to your baby's growing abilities.   When they are just starting to reach for things, you want something nice and long that will fall within the range of their grasp.  As they get older you want more of a challenge.  And let's be honest, even you will get bored if it's all in the same with no change over time.  Trust me, you'll spend hours checking out that baby gym yourself.  While making googly faces and silly noises non-parents just don't produce. 

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Choose A Gym With An Engaging Base

So now that I have you all focused on the top of the gym, let's talk about the bottom.  You're going to want this gym to do double duty as a place for tummy time.  Therefore, you'll want at least a couple of places on the base of the mat that have interesting prints and 3D objects that your baby can grasp.

Personally, I don't think there is a need to have one of those U-shaped tummy time pillows attached.  With proper motivation, your little baby genius should be just fine figuring out how to lift their head and strengthen that little neck.  Instead, I'd opt to make sure there is some kind of mirror that attaches to one of the corner supports so they can marvel at the little miracle they are.  

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Look For Longevity

In my mind there are two ways to look at baby gear.  Find an item that serves a single purpose and does the absolute best possible job at it or choose something that is more versatile and can do double or triple duty.  How you want to approach this depends on the item.  If you're looking at diaper pails, you just want poo-containment and the best poo-containment possible.  In a baby gym, it would be ideal if you could have a piece of gear that goes beyond your baby laying on their back and working towards rolling over.  

Most baby gyms get shoved in the closet once the baby becomes mobile.  Here's where the Gymini Developlace is very cool.  You can put up the sides and suddenly you have a crawl through tunnel which apparently will even entertain a 5 year old (see first photo of sasquatch child in Gymini) 

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There are holes for playing peek a boo and pockets for every baby's favorite game of put things in some sort of container and take them out.  You can also add some other compact stroller or car seat toys to change things up over time.  I added the Tiny Love Pack N Go Mini Mobile to the middle, which is one of my new favorite little travel toys.  It folds up small enough to fit in the palm of your hand and clips on to just about anything.

Think you might want to save these tips for a later date?  You can pin the image below and they'll be ready when you are.

Mommy Testers, How to choose a baby gym, what to look for in a baby gym, tiny love gymini developlace, gymini developlace review

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