Are you plopping junior in front of the tube or giving him any interaction time during most of his day?
Okay, first don’t feel any mommy guilt for using the television as a substitute sitter. We all need a break sometimes.
Secondly, you are not responsible for offering entertainment every minute he’s awake. Your baby is learning how to entertain themselves. If he seems peacefully content then he isn’t bored, lonely and his brain isn’t turning to goo. In fact, if you’re too quick to jump in with a rattle or a song; you may actually interrupt the time he needs to take in his surrounding and make new discoveries.
Find different ways of providing more talk time by placing him beside you while you are watching television. You’re eight month old may be too big for a strap-on sling or baby carrier but he’s the perfect fit for an upright seat stroller.
Wheeling around your little man can give you exercise, offers a change of surrounding for him and could be used while doing simple jobs around the house or errands. I would talk to my baby girl periodically throughout the day while I was getting dressed, taking a shower or making dinner. Another great thing to do is get everyone involved! They can talk, sing or offer baby some clean, comic relief.
If your baby is nearing that one year old milestone he needs more stimulation than ever before. Give him a lot of different things to look at. One simple way to do this is to move his crib, car seat, and high-chair from one interesting spot to another. This is so entertaining at first and make sure to change the position often by placing him nearby bright curtains, or a houseplant and avoid getting him too close to grab anything.
The best “toys” for this age group is really anything with colors and noise. Don’t limit yourself to conventional or expensive toys. My 15 month old daughter was absolutely riveted by her Christmas present box not the actual toy inside it. She loved the colorful wrapping paper and the sound it made when she would tore it off. When my son was about 13 months, he loved banging on pots and pans with wooden spoons. These “toys” were exactly what they needed and entertained them for literally hours.
Follow these suggestions and please drop any mom guilt. Your baby’s senses are sure to be stimulated even when you’re not there to be the headlining entertainment.