Babysitting a one year old can be a harrowing experience, if you look at it the wrong way. My dear little cousin “J” is the easiest baby I’ve ever seen. She coos, she smiles, and she only cried once because she refused to take a nap.
Out of the many toys J’s mommy left, her favorite was the cap of her bottle.
What? You say. Her mom left her THAT for a toy?
Well, no. Mommy left many colorful plastic things that tempted the eyes with buttons that lit up and made noise (and what NOISE!).
But J didn’t like any of them best. She picked the cap of her bottle.
She also enjoyed her game of “empty-the-diaper-bag” and when she found the red packet of wet-wipes she squealed with glee!
She held it out eyeing the vibrant red packaging. Then she pulled it close and gave it a good lick! Oh, how good the packet tasted! Better than any of those gummy rings and keys!
That’s disgusting! You might say. Why would you let a one year old munch on a packet of wipes?
In all honesty, I think those wipes were just as sanitary as anything J was supposed to be teething on!
After all, what do you clean toys with?
Anyway, I decided to show J our air humidifier. It’s a futuristic looking thing with a funnel at the top where the water vapor puffs out. I turned it on and she stared at it.
On hands and knees she scurried over and gaped at the water vapor. She lifted a soft, miniature hand to try and catch the wisps of cloud.
She sat up beside the humidifier and jiggled the blue tank. Gurgling bubbles rose to the surface. She stared wide-eyed.
“Ouh,” She said, in awe.
The humidifier kept her attention for five minutes.
5 whole minutes! Do you know how short the attention span of a one year old is?
I don’t either, you know why? Because it’s so short!
And yet, this little tike sat beside the air humidifier as contented and interested as one could be.
If she could talk, I’m sure she would have asked a million questions.
“What’s this? Why does it float? Why can’t I grab it? Why is it wet? Why does it disappear? How does this weird looking thing work? Can I have one?”
As I sat beside her and watched, I pondered Wonderology.
This one year old had it. She sat with wide wonder-filled eyes for five whole minutes.
She even found the wonder in a packet of sanitary wipes and the cap of her bottle!
She didn’t need a room full of colorful gizmos to keep her happy and interested. She found things to be interested in. And she was happy.