Thursday, March 21, 2013

Baby Proofing- The 2nd Time Around

I think I got pretty lucky with Squirrel. He got into stuff, yes, but he wasn't super curious. He didn't continually try to get into cupboards that he wasn't supposed to go into, pull out the drawers (and all their contents), or think the toilet was the one thing in the bathroom he just had to play with. I only put child safety locks on the cupboards that had cleaning products in them. I told him what cupboard he could play in, the reusable storage container cupboard, and he pretty much stuck to it. The only place I had a gate or barricade was at the top of the stairs.

Bug-A-Boo is very different! He loves to explore. It also seems that he loves to go into places I have told him he cannot go into. He'll get close, then wait for me to see him. As soon as we make eye contact he smiles then goes for the cooking/bakeware cupboard or the craft cupboard. I have been thinking about putting locks on those cupboards as well, but not only is that a pain, but the craft cupboard is in a place that Squirrel can easily access it. So I don't want to put a lock on that cupboard and I surely don't want to show Squirrel how to open the child locks. I am so sick of following Bug around the kitchen and dining room to keep him from getting into stuff!

One of his other favorites is the floor vent. He learned that he can lift the vent out of it's place. I figured if I ignored it, and kept a close eye on him, that eventually he would get bored of it and move on. Well instead, he figured out that without the vent cover, he could throw stuff down the vent! It was good that the first thing he tried throwing down there was a piece of paper, so it got caught up on the side of the vent. I tried to keep the vent stuck down with sticky tack, but it didn't work. He was eventually grabbing toys and bringing them to the vent for the purpose of throwing them down. It is SO frustrating!

Last week my husband came home to a re-arranged living room. He was a little confused at first, but needed little explanation. Since both the floor vent and the craft cupboard are in the dining room I decided I would move the couch. I put it between the dining room and living room to somewhat block Bug from going into that area. It works a little, but he can still get around the couch or go through the kitchen to get to the dining room. 

Today I pulled out the other baby gate. I put it in the kitchen entry way. Then I put a chair in the space between the couch and the wall.  This seems to work to keep him contained in the living room, at least until he realizes he can move the chair.

I didn't have to go through this much with Squirrel. Maybe it was because he was my only child and I could pay more attention to him, maybe Bug just has a different temperament. I have noticed a few other temperament differences as well. Bug throws tantrums. Squirrel never really did, at least not at that age. At 3 he is having a few more tantrums, but nothing horrible.  When Squirrel was a toddler, if you took a toy away from him, it wouldn't phase him, he'd just grab another. If you take something away from Bug, or move Bug away from something he wants, he throws a fit! Sometimes I can't help but laugh, even though I know I shouldn't.

Another thing that makes baby proofing hard is having a 3 year old! He has so many toys that are choking hazards for babies. As much as I try to keep it all in his room and away from Bug, I am still finding little toys all over the place. Squirrel is a magnet for coins too! Somehow he find them then carries them around and ditches them where ever. Usually in a place his brother is playing. On multiple occasions I have seen Bug with a small toy or coin that Squirrel carelessly placed somewhere, but I have to remind my self that he is only 3 so I don't get too upset.We are trying our best to teach Squirrel what he can and cannot have around his brother. Sometimes he seems to get it, other times he just forgets.

What challenges have you run into with baby proofing? Do you have a child who likes to explore or one that is less curious?

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