Keeping a toddler busy throughout the day is no simple task! There is only so much I can get done around the house before I hear, “Mama play? Mama play. Mama Play!”.
There is also so much leggo building and toy car racing I can do before I’m bored out of my mind. Sometimes it’s nice to take it easy with a little activity at the dining room table.
Have you ever dreaded going out of the house with your kids? Maybe it’s just a day of running to the grocery store and the bank or maybe it’s so you can finally make it to that dentist appointment you’ve been putting off for 6 months. Either way, you know your little one will be less than thrilled with the less than “kid friendly” activities.
To survive this sort of adventure you’ll need to pack the essentials. Of course, each child is different and there’s a very good chance that there will be some trial and error before you figure out what will keep your kids happy. For my “Toddzilla”, there are 5 ways I tend to keep him reined in during these outings.
This post was sponsored by Night In Box as part of an Ambassador program and contains affiliate links. All thoughts and opinions are my own. As always, thank you for the support!
Hey mama! Yeah you, with the messy bun and chipped nail polish. My guess is you’re exhausted and could use a little break, am I right? Me too. Motherhood is a beautiful thing but as fulfilling as it is, it doesn’t leave much time for “me time”.
There are quite a few things I love to do to unwind. The trouble is that most of these are time consuming and often pricey (shopping, manicures, etc.). Honestly, the majority of the time I’m too tired to even go out and do these things. Wouldn’t it be nice to have a fairy Godmother appear at times like this? I imagine mine would show up with treats in hand.
I’ve had quite a busy Summer (the blog, family vacations, keeping my toddler entertained…). Then one day I opened my mailbox to find a package marked: It’s You Time. Mom’s Night In Boxes.
There are the “terrible twos” then you have your “threenagers”, but nobody ever warns you about the “Wild Ones”.
My son can’t even speak in full sentences yet but does that stop him from telling me off? Nope. He’ll baby babble at me until he’s blue in the face.
He’s only been walking for 6 months but has somehow mastered stomping and dramatically dropping to the ground for an oscar worthy tantrum.
One of my favorite parts of parenting is seeing my son learn and discover new things every single day. From puzzles to animal noises and even to learning how to brush his own teeth, my pride swells up with each new accomplishment.
Now I’m no professional educator, I’m completely winging it when it comes to motherhood. But I have found that being a stay at home mom has allowed me to find new ways to slip some learning into our normal everyday activities. Some of these I started without even realizing it was a “lesson” (I’m sure you can relate to the boredom that sometimes leads to you breaking out in “Head, shoulders, knees, and toes”).
Here are 5 of my favorites to do with my little one:
- Sing your ABC’s while brushing your teeth and while washing your hands. This will also prevent them from rushing through the activity itself.
- Count stairs. Perfect if you have stairs in your house or live on the upper level of an apartment.
- Name body parts while getting dressed or washing in the bath. This one is easy to do and chances are you’ve already been doing it all a long!
- Make up your own songs. I don’t like things quiet so I find myself singing things like “Stir, stir, stir…stir, stir, stir,..stir your dinner..” to the beat of “Shake your body” by KC and the Sunshine Band.
- Get on the floor with them. If they’re doing a puzzle on the floor, get off the couch and do it with them. If they’re watching TV, ask them questions or play along with the show. My son loves Sesame Street, so whenever the “Number of the Day” comes on I drop whatever I’m doing and stomp/count along with him and Count Dracula. If he is showing interest in something throughout the day, I do my best to support and encourage that.
There are many more activities you can do with your little ones if you just look for the opportunity. Turn mundane activities into learning experiences and your little ones will be grateful for it. Days spent at the house can be boring, why not spice it up and have some fun? Even if my child doesn’t say his ABC’s at an advanced age, at least we had some fun while brushing our teeth. It’s the little things right?
What daily activities do you turn into learning experiences for your children?
One of my all time favorites is a classic beef stew. To keep it simple and easy I threw together this fabulous recipe that will make you seem like Betty Crocker herself (nobody will ever have to know how little effort went into it)!
My son is 1 and in his world there is always something new to discover. I find that as a parent it is easy to forget that to him, everything is new and exciting.
I try my best to remember this and to celebrate each new discovery with him. Yes, I knew a leggo would fit in that cup, but he’s just figured it out. So when he plopped that leggo into the cup and did a happy dance, shouting “YAYYY!”, you can bet that I joined in on the festivities.
As parents our lives are busy and filled with things like bills, grocery lists, cleaning, etc. We need to remember that those things aren’t going anywhere, but the wonder and magic in our children’s lives is. It will not last forever; they will not be easily impressed or wildly entertained by the little things.
That is why I will drop whatever I am doing and dance around the living-room with my son, shouting “YAYYY!”, like I just won the lottery, all because he put a leggo in a cup. I will celebrate the little things for the simple fact that they are big to him. I encourage you all, as parents, to do the same.