Distractions, reflections

David Ing, at large … Sometimes, my mind wanders

2007/03/16 Refrigerated sleeping babies in Finland

One of the more unique Finnish practices is bundling up the baby, putting him or her into a carriage to sleep, and putting the carriage outside in the cold (i.e. below zero) temperatures to sleep. Two minutes before this photograph was taken, this baby had been sleeping in the cold for at least 90 minutes.

Sleeping baby

Inside, Taina and Pekka were hosting (parents) Olli and Johanna for a dinner of sushi.

Sushi dinner

The dinner was quite leisurely — maybe 3 hours — and the baby was awake at the beginning of the dinner. After his two brothers had played with him for an hour, however, he got into a whiny mood that meant he was tired. Wrapping him up and putting him outside ended the crying within minutes.

The Finns say that the cold air is healthy for babies. Dressing for the weather appropriately is important. Although the weather in Finland normally falls below freezing in the winter, Finns do like to be warm. I’m reminded of this when I get into one of their cars, and the seats are warmed, which is something pretty uncommon in North America.

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