I’ve always been a little giddy about outer space. When I found out I was going to have a bouncing little babe, my mind immediately danced with visions of light sabers and telescopes. When I came across the Mamas & Papas Stargaze Play Mat, I was ecstatic about the chance to introduce my son to the stars at such a young age. It’s like someone took the galaxy, packaged it and brought it to our home.
I can honestly say this is the first baby gear item that I have put together sans husband and I was quite pleased with my ability to do so. But before I pat myself on the back too much, I have to admit that putting the play mat together turned out to be easy breezy thanks to the step-by-step picture instructions. Here’s how it went down:
The play mat arrived in a cardboard box with each item wrapped separate. The individual packaging and the clear instruction manual were a true dream team. Each item is numbered and there are clear pictures as to which part goes where. The first step was to unscrew the battery compartment and pop in the double A’s (Remember: Batteries are not included and you will need a flat-head screwdriver to remove the compartment.) The longest part of assembly is pushing two bendable rods through the top covering of the play mat (and even that only takes about five minutes.) Once those are completed, the fun begins. You then attach the sweet little rubber toys and mirrors to varying points on the mat. That’s it and you are ready to play.
Quality and style
The Mamas & Papas brand is known for their innovative and well-made products—and the Stargaze does not disappoint. Filled with vibrant colors (purple, black, green) and soft material, the play mat stands out as a statement piece in my nursery. It makes everything else look drab. Really, this isn’t your mama’s play mat! It’s eye-catching, hi-tech and sure to gain envy stares from visitors.
There is so much to take note of with the play mat. First, there are the rubber toys and mirrors dispersed throughout the mat. Babies can crawl around and explore each little area and discover hidden mirrors as a surprise treat. There are colorful ribbons that provide sensory stimulation, as well as, a noise-making mat (a squishy sound, like rubbing two plastic bags together) to help engage the learning process. (And that’s just the bottom!) The top is complete with dots, hanging rubber toys and star lights that connect to musical discs that play tunes stimulated by babies kicks to a footplate at the end of the mat. Baby can literally show his preferences to how fast and slow he would like the lights to go. An added bonus for parents? You can hook up your own electronic devices (MP3 players, I-pods, etc.) to the musical discs to play your own sweet jams to your babe. Top it all of with a comfy black and white dotted head pillow and there you have it.
But how does my handsome little man feel about it? He’s in love and as a mom, I’m smitten too. Every time I put him down to play, he coos and smiles with excitement. And thanks to this play mat, I am pretty sure my tiny guy is a great big genius. He knows exactly how to kick the footplate to make the lights go faster and the music to play louder. As parents, we sit in amazement as our monkey discovers all the fun to be had.
As a stargazer myself, I couldn’t ask for a more intellectually stimulating product to introduce my baby to a world of imagination. And the fact that my small man enjoys it too? Priceless.
Buy it: mamasandpapas.com