So now it’s just you and the little guy.
The older kids are off at school. The house has returned to normal (for the most part), and you find your youngest looking expectantly at you as his one and only playmate. How do you keep a toddler entertained without sacrificing your own to-do list or resorting to hours of television and video games? We have some ideas:
1) Sign up with the Park District. Park District activities are great for younger children to experience something new, socialize with others their age and get out of the house. Many of the activities involve arts and crafts, giving your little one an outlet for his messy side. Parents are oftentimes encouraged to join in the fun, but participation isn’t mandatory. Feel free to work on your own projects while little one works on his!
2) Look into play dates. Know of some other parents who could use time alone? Offer to watch their kids for a few hours with the understanding that you’ll be dropping off your kid at their house the following week. With three or four families participating, the rotation could see to it that you’d be child free once a week, three weeks out of the month!
3) Let baby help. Just because they’re young doesn’t mean they can help you make dinner, clean the house or grocery shop. By providing baby with a specific task (i.e. stirring the cake batter, dropping items into the cart), he’ll stay interested for longer periods of time. This translates into more time spent toward getting your daily tasks accomplished.
Give it a try! It’ll help take baby’s mind off of how much he may miss his older siblings and allow for a great bonding experience.