At nine months Otto is pulling up on his Pikler Arch. He sometimes steps up to the first rail and today I noticed he put one foot up to the second rail. It takes time, he is experimenting, he is testing and challenging himself! The Pikler Arch provides a fantastic opportunity to meet his developmental needs in a safe and supervised way. How we use the arch: Always supervise. I wouldn't put this in the child's bedroom. We have it in his movement/play area, next to our living area which is always supervised. Have it on or near a soft... Read more →

I'm always looking for fresh breakfast and snack ideas. Otto at nine months is now eating a lovely variety of foods that makes breakfast fun and interesting. Here are a few of our favourite plant-based baby breakfast ideas (from nine months) that my big kids (7 and 10 years) love too. 1. Fruit Yogurt. Caspar (10 years) eats yogurt almost every day for breakfast and once Otto hit the six months point he started feeding it to him too. Sometimes I serve it plain but often we add fruit. Here I mashed two strawberries and mixed in coconut yogurt. 2.... Read more →

Otto is three months into his weaning journey and it feels a lot of my time and energy is focused on food. Otto hasn't taken to using a weaning glass as easily as Otis did, and Otto throws more of his food. So weaning has been a little more frustrating this time around! I wanted to share some of my top weaning tips, it's a bit of a reminder for me but hopefully, you'll find them useful too. 〉Babies learn through observation so your baby needs to see you eat! Ensure that even if they are eating at their weaning... Read more →

A few pictures from around our home today. You can't stop kids from collecting. This is Otis' UK beach treasure collection. So precious! Lots of rocks and sea glass. We can teach children how to value and take care of their collections, a little display box is a nice. We are supporting Otis' interest in Astronomy. I'm hoping for clear skies so we can see some of these stars. Using a telescope and locating the stars isn't easy but we are learning alongside Otis. Otto learning about object permanence. His first puzzle! We finally put a little mirror up in... Read more →

I'm starting to think about pounding and hammering toys for Otto (nine months) and I'm also starting to get some ideas for his first birthday! We have the Hammer Game with Balls (#3), c/o Manine Montessori). A few of my Montessori friends have used the Plan Toys Miracle Pounding toy (#5) and have recommended it to us. Otis used the Melissa and Doug Pound and Roll Tower (#9) in his Montessori toddler class and loved it so much we got it at home, he used it for almost a year, it was so worth the money. I'm also loving the... Read more →

I'm loving anything thrifted, handmade or repurposed. There are some lovely Montessori materials that I'm going to invest in but I like to DIY a few things too! Here are three DIY materials that we are currently using and loving with Otto at nine months. These are suitable with supervision once the infant is sitting, perhaps from 6-12 months+. Above is a ball tracker made from an egg rack (similar here). I've seen this used a few times in Montessori toddler rooms, but I can't find any examples right now. Unlike traditional tracking toys, the infant isn't tracking from side... Read more →

I was recently reading article about Montessori in the home and gentle parenting that left me feeling slightly unorganized, my house suddenly felt a little too messy, life a little too chaotic. After discussing this with a friend and also thinking about it internally, I realized there was something wrong with this idealized picture of how life should or could be. I have no doubt the author was authentic but her life is different from mine in one major way - this family has one child. We have three children including an infant. I remember how easy it was to... Read more →

We don't need to provide a lot of activities to promote gross motor development, it really comes naturally to the child and they will find things in the environment to support them. But it is important that we provide a safe environment and sometimes that means giving them things to climb up on rather than them climbing on unwanted things like chairs or tv cabinets. It means that we need to provide an environment that supports movement. A lot of families will provide gross motor activities outdoors but there is no reason it can't be done inside too. One of... Read more →

Have you tried a stacking toy with your little one? They are very popular but most stacking toys given to children look a little like this or like this, with graduated rings. There is a simpler stacking toy to start with, that can be used by the sitting infant to help them develop concentration and coordination, it's the First Stacking Toy with Rings like those pictured above. You can present it with one to three rings. To start, make the rings the same size and fairly large. Once the child has mastered it you can present the same toy but... Read more →