Tuesday, August 26, 2008

making it work

There's nothing like the frenzied yell "Mommy, I went potty on the carpet!" to really get your blood going in the morning (especially when you're nursing a baby and temporarily unable to move).

Which has got me thinking today about some of the little tips and tricks I've learned that make parenting so much easier. Like the rule of Children Playing: 1 child moping around being lonely= no housework done, 2 = children playing happily in another room; lots of housework done. Playdates rock. Or speaking of housework--the best time is RIGHT after breakfast, when everyone's tummies are full and the kids are content to play happily without attention from me (they're tired of me trying to convince them to eat, so they're excited about running off and hiding. Perfect time to clean bathrooms). Or that one can blog while a Tonka truck is zooming across the desk in front of the keyboard. I'm just sayin'.

Anyway, one of my favorite little things like this is to pop in a book on tape while the kids are eating lunch. Disney books on tape are great for toddlers, since they have lots of sounds and songs. My grandma recorded a tape of herself reading stories (from a book that she gave Abigail for Christmas) that's also been a real hit. Right now, Abigail's really into listening to the Book of Mormon audiotapes...we had an animated discussion the other day over who the angel was that appeared to Alma the Younger ("Was it Moroni, Mom? Maybe Jesus? Just somebody you don't know their name? Who was it, Mom? I want to know!").

In any case, it's a great way to keep their attention focused while they're eating lunch, since I'm often washing dishes or paying bills or something and not actually sitting down with them (time where they're both sitting in the same place safely occupied is almost invaluable--can you blame me for cleaning the kitchen?). So this way they sit happily eating, listening with wide eyes to the stories, laughing and asking questions about what they're hearing. It's nice (and we fill in our mealtime conversational needs at dinner).

What little tricks keep your life running smoothly?


danielle said...

Oh i LOVE tips like these! Sorry I don't have any though...I am just a taker;)

rachel said...

Yes, keep them coming! I was seriously going to write you the other day and ask you for your daily schedule. You seem to get so much done with kids. I need to learn how to do that or I'm going to go crazy.

My only tips are having Zoe play in her baby gym when she first wakes up (and is happy to do so), taking her into the bathroom in the swing while I'm bathing (not showering), and using the Bjorn/sling when I really, really need to clean the house (though I try to play with her most of the time if she's awake).

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