Treasure basket for young babies?

(16 Posts)
Zara1984 Thu 14-Mar-13 12:46:12

DS is nearly 5 months old and I thought it would be nice to make him a simple treasure basket. The creche he's going into at 12 months use them (had never heard of them before) and it sounds like a good idea.

He likes to grab things and examine/put in his mouth.

What sort of things could I put in it? I'd just use a medium sized plastic box to put them in. Should I use household items only or can I also use twigs/things from outside etc?

MrsMushroom Thu 14-Mar-13 13:21:23

Well I wouldn't use twigs if he's that young! He'll eat them/poke himself in the eye.

He needs things like a length of interestingly textured fabric, a clean, new bottle brush without the tiny brush insert at the end, some big wooden beads on a securely tied cord, a wooden spoon, a ball, some measuring cups attached to one another, a home made rattle...I made ours out of shiny tins with dried peas inside...small tins they were and I secured the lids with super glue inside! But do check regulalry to make sure nothing is coming apart.

Nannytwotimes Thu 14-Mar-13 13:23:07

I think you'd have to keep it updated according to his age but currently things like wooden spoon (for sucking/banging) small saucepan (more banging) small plastic bottle with dried pasta inside ( for shaking) plastic ball etc. No need to spend lots of money. Buy an under the bed box with a lid. He'll probably end up enjoying the box too! I keep hardly any toys here but the grandchildren find all sorts to play with amongst my household items. Currently a baking cake tray with empty paper cake cases, some dried pasta shapes and a salad bowl for stirring is perfect for the 2yr old. Enjoy!

Carolra Thu 14-Mar-13 13:26:12

Small plastic bottles filled with rice/lentils/dried pasta/multi coloured buttons/water + glitter. Clean jar lids, pine cones, our health visitor said old CDs, but I was never sure about that... we had a couple of wallpaper samples that DD played with for hours....

Like mrs mushroom said, Use lots of texture and different (safe) materials too. Dd1 is now 8 but I remember that hers had a small natural leather purse, a cotton handkerchief, a wooden spoon, a plastic bag clip, a shaving brush and a new shower body puff thingy for washing. Just look round your house for things that can be used. Make sure you check everything in the basket for signs of chewing or damage every time you let them play, make sure nothing is coming apart.

Basketofchocolate Thu 14-Mar-13 13:35:13

I lost a decent plastic set of measuring spoons to my son about this age. He loved them to chew on, shake about, etc. as a baby and now uses to play 'cooking' with his beads/buttons, etc.

He also still has an old (cleaned!) wallet that we gave him to play with younger too. Just liked opening it, sticking his fingers in the flaps for cards, chewing on the leather.

Tuppaware (or equiv) plastic lids can be good for chewing and often have interesting edges.

We used to have a length of plastic chain from a DIY store. Not long enough to get round a neck, obv. Just wash in soapy water.

Can't think what else right now, but things like cloths and random safe cooking utensils were always popular I think.

AlanMoore Thu 14-Mar-13 13:46:19

My DS absolutely loves treasure baskets. Anything baby can't hurt himself with put in a bowl or basket that he can reach into will do - I often chuck a random selection of DD's toys into a bucket for him and he is happy for ages.
We did go to a session at the children's centre where they had made up beautiful baskets of wooden and metal objects for the babies, he was transfixed for the whole two hours! That was things like pastry brushes, wooden balls, measuring spoons (the American kind that are fastened together).
I second the old purse or wallet, both of mine have loved playing with an old leather purse.

AlanMoore Thu 14-Mar-13 13:47:15

Also definite second to bun cases, we have some silicone ones too which they love.

Mehrida Thu 14-Mar-13 16:21:18

I have made a couple for friends with babies and one for DS (10m).

I went to the Pound shop and spent £20, which was enough to buy and fill three. DS's particular favourite is a frilly-shower-sponge-cloth-thing (what ARE they called?) and he loves the silicon cupcake cases. I also got wee clear tupperware boxes and filled them with different coloured beads, which he loves.

I picked loads of random stuff, toothbrushes, spoons etc and finally I cut up some old silk jammies and a (new) dishcloth so they had loads of different textures to play with.

ceeveebee Thu 14-Mar-13 16:39:13

I had one of these for my twins, it used to occupy them for a good 45 minutes at a time!
Racking my brains now as it was 12 months ago but I think we had:
Some wooden bowls
Wooden spoon
Set of plastic measuring spoons
Metal egg cups
A couple of small tupperwares
Some brown paper
Some ribbon
A chiffon scarf
A fluffy pencil case
A shower doofah (same as Mehrida I don't know what they are called)
Some paper cups
A soft nailbrush
A small sieve (like a tea strainer)
A plastic mobile phone thing (it was called a "stressberry" supposedly a stress toy for adults)
Some gift bows

Zara1984 Thu 14-Mar-13 19:11:57

Thank you for these fantastic suggestions! I'm going to head to a discount shop on the weekend to get some bits based on these suggestions!

I made a mini-one today with things I found round the house, and put the items in a clear Ikea box. Wooden spoon, silicone pastry brush, cotton wool, hotel toothbrush, ball of wool, brightly coloured paper, rice in a travel moisturiser tub, rice in a small breastmilk bottle, paper muffin cases, wooden spoon, big hairdresser clips, measuring spoons (my only set though, so will have to take them back!) and a small muslin cloth.

smile But his favourite item (not in the box!) was my keys...!

AlanMoore Fri 15-Mar-13 17:04:10

Aww! I made DS a treasure shoebox inspired by this - glad I didn't put much effort in as he emptied it out and crawled off to chew the John Lewis interiors catalogue then spent the afternoon learning to climb the stairs. I think his peaceful basket days are over (he's 9m)...

iamkirsty Fri 15-Mar-13 20:46:48

Sounds great Zara! You might want to take the cotton wool out though, it could be a choking hazard? And then maybe just give him some to feel while you're with him and can stop him munching it, haha. The rest sounds lovely though smile

Chocolateporridge Fri 15-Mar-13 21:09:18

At my bf group they showed I'd how to make treasure baskets up and one of the favourites were latex free gloves, doubled up (one inside the other), filled with baby lotion and then tied tightly. They felt so weird and squishy and kept the dcs occupied for ages. They also filled them with curly pasta, honey, lentils and other things with interesting textures but the baby lotion ones were the winners and they smelt fab! Obviously you have to check them each time they're used for signs of chewing etc but they're cheap and very interesting smile

neverputasockinatoaster Fri 15-Mar-13 22:19:34

I made DD a treasure basket when she was about 6 months old - filled with things like wooden spoons, measuring spoons etc. DS was 3 at the time and expressed jealousy so I made him one too.

They both still have them - they were in baskets. DD keeps hers under a chair in the living room (why I do not know) and DS has his on a shelf in his room.

All suggestions that they no longer need them are met with howls of horror!

MiaowTheCat Sun 17-Mar-13 10:39:56

Most sought-after toy in our local children's centre... huge basket full of washed jam jar lids.

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