Life with a toddler is a whole new phase, as the times when your child would nap through out the day are now few and far between. Now your child is awake with the birds and is ready to start their day of exploring the world around them.
There is no doubt that life with a toddler is busy, but what happens when you need to get some things done and your child is seeking all of your attention? While getting things done with a toddler around is difficult, it is not impossible. Here are some tips to help you get things done with a toddler around.
Include them in your tasks
Letting your child help with a task not only lets them feel included, but it also helps them learn. While baking, you can let your little one help you hold the spoon and guide them in stirring a batter or show them how to help pick up their toys when they are finished playing
Talk them through your tasks
While you are doing something, talk to your little one and tell them step by step what you are doing. Talking them through the process makes them more interested and engaged in what you are doing rather than fighting for you to only focus on them.
Give them some plastic containers to play with
Kids may get bored playing with their own toys sometimes, take one big container or plastic bowl and fill it with different sized containers. Show your child how to take them out and put them back in or give them some measuring cups and teach them how to stack them together.
Create a play area
Create a play area where your child can have all of their toys and books and encourage them to play solo. You may need to sit down and show them how to play at first, but once they are occupied with their toys, slowing sneak away. If your child comes out to see you while you are doing other things, gently guide them back into their area, they will eventually get the idea of play/alone time.
Turn a pack 'n play into a reading corner
If you have a pack ‘n play, you can turn it into a cozy little space with pillows, books and toys and let them enjoy a snack while they are surrounded with their favorite items.
Take advantage of nap time
If your little one still takes a nap, use this time to get work done without any interruptions. It is helpful to prioritize your tasks with a list of things that need your full concentration and others that can be done with snuggle breaks in between.
Encourage reading time
Start early introducing your little one to books. Ones with peek a boo flaps or pop up pages help your child interact with books and keeps them engaged a lot longer. If your child is younger and is just starting out with books, try to find ones that have hard pages so that they are easier to turn and wont rip easily.
Play some music
Music is great for children and helps distract them rather than turning to the tv for entertainment. You could even create a play list for each activity, some upbeat songs to get your little in the mood for play time, or even some soothing music to help them wind down.
Make a routine
Children need some kind of routine so that they know what to expect in a day, even on days when you don’t have much to do, keep with the idea of your child having their quiet/play time so that it wont be a struggle on the days when you do need to do other things.
Prioritize your tasks and set a time limit
Sometimes you can get started on something and the time just gets away from you. Realistically, toddlers will only entertain themselves for so long. It can help if you prioritize your tasks around each of your child’s daily activities and set yourself a timer to complete your task.
Go outside before starting your tasks
Children get restless and bored if they are in the house and it adds to them looking for you to entertain them. Before you start to do you work, take little ones outside for a long walk for some fresh air or let them run around and play for a bit to get some of their energy out.
I hope this helps give you some ideas in getting things done while you are with your toddler. If you have tips that you find helpful, please share them in the comments.