We have all been there. We need to get food on the table, laundry folded, and some of us may even need to work all while entertaining our tiny toddler humans. It is not easy! That is why I came up with 4 ACTIONABLE tips to help you get things done even with a toddler running around!
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1. Play with them first
Now I know what you’re thinking. You don’t have time to play right now. However, hear me out. I have found that actually taking the time to spend 15 or more uninterrupted minutes playing with your toddler first can make all of the difference.
Children crave love and attention, and they deserve it! If you can, I highly encourage you to take this step first before trying to get them to do any type of solo activities. It might just make them that much more willing to cooperate. It also might help to ease the mom guilt you feel for having to do chores instead of playing with them at that moment.
2. Actually include them in your task
Toddlers LOVE to help and be included whenever possible. If you can, try giving them simple tasks that actually contribute to what you are trying to get done! If you give them a random task that doesn’t make sense they will often abandon it at first sight of you working on something different.
For example, if you are cleaning the kitchen, you could allow your toddler to “wash” the dishes! You can start with tidying and wiping surfaces first and save the floor for last. That way, if they spill water on the floor (which is inevitable) it’s no biggie! You are going to clean it anyways! Another cleaning activity my son loves to do is using his vacuum sweeper. I may or may not encourage him to clean the floors multiple times a day. He loves it!
3. Create a snack hideaway!
I literally do this ALL of the time. My toddler seems to ALWAYS enjoy his forts! If I am looking for a win, I make him a fort in a unique configuration filled with his favorite snacks! You can make an old-fashioned fort out of your couch or use a Nugget dupe like this one! It is just as fun, and affordable too! Luckily, if you’re using a play couch it is very easy and quick to assemble a fort!
There are endless configurations, but we simply turn the cushions on their sides to create “walls” and drape a blanket over the top! Insert snacks, and you have just bought yourself some time to get a few things accomplished.
4. Setup a cozy reading corner
Toddlers love to be independent while also being the neediest humans ever. Whenever I feel that my son needs a quiet activity that won’t overstimulate him I create a super cozy reading corner for him!
I grab all of the coziest blankets, and a few good books to encourage him to sit and read independently. Cozy blankets really make all of the difference so I highly suggest having a few really soft blankets for them to snuggle with while they read. My efforts are usually rewarded with at least 15 minutes to knock off a task on my to-do list!
It’s important to remember all toddlers are different and have varying attention spans. Your kiddo may require more hands-on time than others or thrive with more solo play.
It is all about trying different things, and finding what works for your kiddo. Honestly, it may vary from week to week or day to day even, but keep at it! Now go tackle that to-do list, you got this!