Should I get up with baby when she is playing in her bed in the early morning?

Q: My daughter is 7 months old. When she wakes up, she plays in her bed, cooing and playing with her feet. Although she isn't in the same room with me, I can hear her but am still half asleep. Should I get her out of bed or let her play?

A: Lucky you! Many children wail when they first get up, and the parent has no choice but to respond right away. But a 7 month old who can soothe herself with her voice and her thoughts and her own feet is a blessing for sleepy parents. I suggest you enjoy these times in any way you wish. No baby needs a parent at every single moment--what they need is a parent handy when they get into a jam and need something that they can't provide for themselves. It is wonderful that your daughter is exploring the world a bit with her eyes and her hands and her mind, and that this gives her enjoyment. She will let you know when you need to step in actively!