A long time ago, we were preparing for the imminent arrival of our first born and, like a lot of new parents, we wanted to create the perfect environment for our little bundle of treasure. That meant pastel colours, soft sheets and Kenny G playing in the background.
Something relaxing and comforting and reassuring for the wee one. And what could be more those things than the soothing sounds of the Amazon rainforest.
Well, something like that. Fisher-Price Rainforest range is undoubtedly attractive; with cute ‘jungle’ animals, flowing, clear waterfalls and verdant greenery. It certainly has a relaxing effect and we were seduced when shopping for the first time. We bought this bouncer and the Rainforest Gym. Our home had become green and serene. But both of my kids took to it like I take to a real gym.
It’s one of those things when you see it in the shop, together with your growing sense of excitement, it seems like a good idea to splurge – “Oh, they’d love that!”. But babies are pretty “meh!” about everything.
The frame was a little flimsy, but for us, the main problem was when our baby was put in it, he was kind of lost in the undergrowth.
They could only stay there a couple of minutes before crying, and then we had to pull them out. Like a lot of these electronic things, it bleeped the same bleeping three songs over and over again. So the extra money we paid to have an electronic function are the things we stopped using first. In the end, it simply became a play mat. The dangling animals were taken off and occasionally played with, but ultimately I felt, like I have with a lot of things, we didn’t get much use out of it.
The bouncer, on the other hand, was much more loved, although not perfect. A bouncer is pretty much an essential item. They could rock themselves to sleep, calm themselves down, and entertain themselves while exercising their legs. Of course, it came with a Fisher Price electronic bells and whistles attachment, but, again, we hardly ever used it. Often they would get overstimulated and start crying. Most of the time, it looked like this and they were pretty content.
If I did it all again, I would try not to be seduced by all the lights and colours, and just buy a standard rocker. Most of the time, a baby would rather look at their parents’ faces and, trust me, spending time looking at your baby’s face is one of the easier parental chores you have to do.