Ahhh the first tentative toddles… it’s all fun & games right? My little boy Eli took his first steps the day after he turned 1. He pulled himself up from the sofa and walked 4 steps to the coffee table in front of his delighted grandparents, as if he had done it a million times before.

Since then we’ve had countless bumps to the head, a cut lip, tantrums from not wanting to get back into his pram after fun in the park and a trip to get the trotters measured.

Now, we all know that each & every babe develops in their own time and there really isn’t any rush for them to get their toddle on. But, here’s my must-have tips to help you get them on their feet & how to prepare for the madness coming your way. 😱

Walk with me

Eli was immobile until he turned 11 months old. I called him a seal because sometimes he would pull himself on his belly, but most of the time showed no interest in crawling or walking. For Christmas, Eli was given a walker, which seemed to really help him gain confidence in toddling around. He’ll still take it for a spin now even though he can walk unaided and I’m sure it will double up as wagon to push his little brother in when he is big enough as well!

If the shoe fits

We headed to a high street store to get Eli’s feet measured, but I have to admit I wasn’t blown away by the choice at all. Looking for some cool kicks? KIDLY’s got loads of awesome shoes. Each shoe product page also features a really comprehensive size guide and printable size measurement charts for each brand. It makes measuring up footwear for your little nippers much simpler - there’s no need to leave the house to get those first special shoes & the choice is much cooler too.

Quick tip: Pick a pair with soft soles for the first walkers, otherwise your kid will end up clomping around & probably falling down too. Trust me, I tried to make Eli walk in hard sole Dr Martens and it was comedy gold.

Get childproofing

If your home isn’t fully child proofed, then don’t delay at the first sign of those initial steps. Buy child proof locks for EVERYTHING! Put up baby gates, store away anything potentially dangerous & don’t leave the bleach next to the toilet anymore! I know it all sounds so obvious, but it isn’t until they are walking (or running!) about that you spot all the things that are suddenly in touching distance. Eli will now go up onto his tippy toes to try and reach mugs, plates, laptops – basically whatever we leave on the dining room table. If this isn’t a wakeup call to be a little more organised and tidy then I don’t know what is. *researches cost of cleaner*

Rein them in

A few weeks ago we bought Eli the most adorable backpack with reins and I can’t wait to try it out when he is a little more steady. Not only can he carry his own snack, but we can keep him close to us when we hit the park and he’s off trying to reach the nearest dog or piece of rubbish to pick up.

I feel as if I’ve blinked and my baby is a little person, running around and causing mayhem. I know everyone always says ‘This is the best stage’ but for me, right now, it really is!

Laura x