LOVEVERY – Play Gym!
The longevity of use for certain baby items is often a reason to convince yourself to buy cheaply. I mean, if it’s only going to be used for a limited amount of time then what’s the point in splashing out? Right? Well, while often this is a perfectly reasonable approach there are certain items I’ve found over the years that you really shouldn’t scrimp on for numerous reasons but most of all because with some things I find you buy cheaply once, then you’ll buy twice in the end – you may as well get it right first time I reckon!
My top baby items to make a splurge on would be choosing the right buggy, cot and crib, bath tub, sling and play gym. It’s true what they say about getting what you pay for and with items like these, though the shelf life may be smaller than other things of a similar monetary value, what they afford you and your baby is absolutely worth it and with baby items it’s worth remembering also that if they are good quality in the first place, they will retain their value and can be given on to other babies easily!
When it comes to the play gym, this was the first purchase I realised I hadn’t been quite so savvy with for my first baby Florence. I’d found a cheap one which not only had been half off in a sale but also matched my living room decor. Win/Win I’d thought at the time of purchase however… She didn’t like it from the word go, she looked bored and no wonder, compared to other play gyms, I later realised, it was basically useless other than it looked rather nice in the corner of the room. She was about 3 months old when Florence and I did an acting job together playing mother and baby. While watching her become very animated and engaged on a really amazing play gym in the green room I realised I was going to have to step my game up and buy a better one for home too – I made the purchase the same day as I kicked myself for making my first buying twice purchase . I had saved absolutely nothing and spent out more than I’d ever needed to but seeing her on a really good play gym made me realise how important this item is!
Over the years my children have played on many play gyms as babies because I have been able to review a few – perk of the job I guess. Sometimes they’ve been like that first one I bought for Florence, made mainly with an adult in mind but I’ve also got to see in action some really terrific ones and the one Posie has been using recently is the very best one I’ve ever seen. It is absolutely glorious and while it certainly does have a price tag that might have made me wince first time around, I know it is worth every single penny to watch her gain so much from this little activity hub. Also… This particular play gym, from LOVEVERY, has an extensive play life for the child and while most do become redundant at about 6 months making the initial outlay feel annoying, this one is said to last a child until he or she is at least 12 months old and I can see it being a fixture in our play room far beyond that point thanks to the lovely tent it comes with to extend it and make it fun for an older baby! This really is not important at all, something you only really learn AFTER having a baby, but it’s easy on the eye for grown ups too!
The LOVEVERY play gym comes with a booklet which tells you information for each stage not just of what the play gym does but what your baby will be enjoying to do as well. It offers tips and tricks on how to play with and engage with your baby, what she will be able to see and focus on, how her development has changed each month and how the play gym can help with her learning and entertainment. It’s really handy and helpful too!
Posie is at the very early stages of using the gym and is adoring looking at the black and white cards which can be slipped under holders over the arches of the gym as well as into a flap which can be lifted up at floor level. You can store all the cards, which are the black and white ones, picture cards featuring children’s faces and objects and mirror cards, in here too. The three hanging toys, a Montessori classic shaped contrast ball, batting ring with a bell and organic cotton teether (all can be detached) are enticing her to try and touch them as she focuses on each one. She is currently trying to roll over from her back to her front and can’t quite get there (the other way she’s already doing) and they encourage her to go for it!
The mat is super soft and has lots of padding underneath which makes it ideal on our hard floors. I rather liked the gym I was using with her before this one arrived but there were elements to it which made it not quite as thoughtful and that was one area that really let it down. We have hard wood and stone on the lower ground throughout so something comfortable is really necessary and I’d rather not be faffing around making blankets the right shape to put the gym on! Posie is also getting some tummy time on this one which she loves (although she does tend to roll over pretty quickly). The lady at Gymboree told me she should be getting about 90 minutes on her tummy a day right now (not all in one go) and the floor of this gym is great for that. There’s so many things on the edges of this mat which can be unfolded all at the same time or hidden away so as not to cause over stimulation. There’s also a lovely chunky teething ring which she can grasp in her little hands and chew on. This sits nicely away in a pocket when not being used!
I love so much about this play gym not least because it will grow with her, transform in ability with her and continue to be a real staple play area for her well beyond a year old I’m sure. It’s a timeless piece which can be passed on to friends making it super sustainable on top of the sustainably sourced materials that it is made from. The materials are also thoroughly tested for safety as well and free from toxins while being flame retardant. 100% cotton and silicone makes it perfect for baby skin to play safely and the company also offset their carbon footprint to minimise their impact on the environment by shipping through carbon neutral projects. Ethical, educational and a real time piece which does everything you and the baby need it to. I love it and am so pleased Posie has this to play on – as is Raffie!
Ok, so as with almost everything it’s not perfect and I will absolutely tell you what I don’t like about it now that I’ve told you all I’ve found to love. There are just two things I think could make it even better and might ever so slightly let it down when it’s so thoughtful in every other area. The cards are very flimsy and I wish they were a bit more hardy like the mirrors. The toddler has already bent one by grabbing it and this makes my bum twitch so just a bit more body to them would be my main change and though I love the tent like cover it doesn’t have anywhere to live. A little pocket on the underside to keep that in until it’s needed would make this play gym 100% perfecto!
But I don’t want to leave on a low point, which lets’s face it aren’t particularly anything to take major issue with, and say one more time how fabulous the play gym is. Posie is animated and excited, engaged and encouraged by playing on the Love Very Play Gym and it’s easy to see why!
The play gym was gifted to Posie as part of a collaboration project with LOVEVERY.