Finnian has found the pot of gold at the end of his rainbow ... a basket of household items of various textures, weights, temperatures and shapes for his exploration.
This is an idea I gleaned from How To Raise An Amazing Child the Montessori Way - a handy introduction to Montessori parenting that has been on my shelf for a few years now.
The treasure basket currently holds: a salad spoon, a wooden spoon, a metal egg separator, a ball of wool yarn, a scrap of cotton flannel, a Russian nesting doll, a small fabric bag, a spice jar with sesame seeds, a wooden egg, a thick glass vase, a kukui nut necklace, a wooden scrub brush, and a felted wool ball.
Finn will sit in front of this basket for almost forty minutes, taking things in and out, touching them with his hands and feet, and putting them in his mouth. At times, I will remove the items that he has taken out and hasn't touched in a while, to keep the visual clutter to a minimum.
The treasure basket has worked its way into our morning routine. After waking, going to the bathroom and changing into clothes, Finn sits with his basket as we listen to some quiet piano music. Then - we're off on our morning walk to greet all of the kitties in the neighborhood.
Mornings with the babe are my favorite time of the day, even though they tend to start a little earlier than I might have chosen. They are so peaceful - so quiet - I can even hear the click, click of his two new teeth on the objects he is exploring with his mouth!