Something I often get asked about is where I got our floor mats from so I wanted to do a quick post with the info on where they’re from, how much they were and why I like them!
This large Playgro playmat is the one I’m asked about most. We were actually gifted this when Dylan was born but it’s from Smyths and costs €28.99. At the minute they don’t have this particular one in stock but they have an almost identical one for the same price here. I have to say even though it’s a bit pricey I find the one we have fantastic. It’s big enough to allow for plenty of rolling and movement, plus it’s one of the more padded ones I’ve come across which is great for minding their little heads as they learn to roll. Dylan especially loves it as it’s so bright and colourful, and has various different textures & sounds for auditory and tactile stimulation (e.g. a crinkly door that opens and closes, a furry area which is nice to feel, etc). It also has a little mirror on it which is a huge hit and has two teething type toys attached to play with and chew (although I’m not sure the teething toys are on the one currently in stock in Smyths). Whenever I’m headed to a family members house, I fold this up and take it with me so that Dylan has something soft enough to be on while on the floor. It may seem pricey but we’ve used this every day since he was born and it’s one of the best things we’ve been bought. Anytime another mum has come to visit they always comment on what a great mat it is and I’ve recommended it to so many friends. It’s recommended by the manufacturer to spot clean with a cloth only, but I’ve put it on a delicate cycle in the machine and it’s come out fine.
Alphabet Foam Mat
Foam Mats are something I would also highly recommend. I’ve put these under his big playmat to give some extra cushioning when Dylan first started rolling over but they are also great on their own, or with a normal blanket thrown on top for very young babies. Because of the texture on the foam they are great for helping give a bit of grip for learning to crawl and the bonus is that they are really easy to clean either by just giving a wipe or letting steep in the sink. We got ours in Tesco while they were on sale for €5.99 however the squares are extremely small and I had to buy a second pack and use them together to make it big enough. We also bought the ones which have letters in them – I think this will be great for when Dylan is older as it can be used both to teach him to recognise his letters and also as a fun puzzle. The Tesco ones are in store only so unfortunately I can’t find a link to them, however since buying ours I’ve found various others I’d recommend over the Tesco one’s that are larger in size. Mothercare do a set in a better size priced at €23.96 here. They also do them in a numbers format which are slightly smaller in overall size but cost less at €18.00 found here. Smyths also do larger ones at €29.99 found here. If you’d prefer plain mats with no letters then Halfords do a great value set of 8 large squares for €15 here.
Bright Starts Jungle Baby Gym
This baby gym was also a gift from a friend but it’s been a firm favourite of Dylan’s since he was just a few weeks old and he still plays with it now at 5 months. The cheapest place I could find it was Boots (find it here) at €38.99 which I do feel is a little pricey for what it is. It’s a basic gym, with a dangly monkey which plays music when pulled and a little reflecting mirror which catches the babies attention. Although Dylan absolutely loves it, I do think you can get better value on similar ones. Smyths have a Playgro one for €19.99 here, and Argos have a Chad Valley one for €21.99 here. If you did want to spend over the €30 mark, I’d spend on one which is more interactive to make it worth your money. For example Boots have a Fisher Price 3 in 1 Musical Gym for €39.99 here or the VTech 2 in 1 Baby Gym which costs €43.50 here both of which have light up features and a variety of musical melodies. The playmat has been one of our most used toys the past 4 months and I reckon we’ll get another good couple of months out of it yet as he loves playing with it while sitting up and still enjoys even just lying under it kicking it with his feet and pulling with his hands.
Adverts and Donedeal are both great for second hand bargains too so it’s always worth checking them out for any of the items mentioned in this post if you’re on a tight budget.
I hope this post was useful to some of you, and if there’s anything else you’d like me to recommend or do comparison posts on please feel free to drop me a message on Facebook and let me know!
Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post and none of the links above are affiliate links. All prices are correct as of August 2016.