Oftentimes you need a little non-kid time even when you have kids. This does not always come at a convenient hour (after the kid has gone to sleep), so here are a few ways to grab a couple of minutes in your happy place. Mine happens to be the wonderful world of Pinterest. Yours may be Candy Crush, knitting, binge watching something on Netflix. Whatever it is, these tricks are guaranteed to get you a few minutes in your magical zone where no one is asking you to wipe their butt.
1. Let them play in the dirt. Dirt is awesome because it hold surprises like grass, leaves, bugs, rocks. Add toy, cars, shovels, buckets and other “good in the dirt” toys. Add some water to the equation and those suckers are making mud pies and stomping in puddles. Estimated Pinning Time: 20-30 minutes
2. Feed them. A nice plate full of several different new food choices (baby bento box). Persimmons, mangoes, yogurt covered raisins, purple carrots, whole grain crackers. An array of new visually appealing things on the plate will grab their attention. Tell them they will get a donut or ice cream if they eat it all and you have added at least three more minutes onto your Pinning time.MOTHER OF THE YEAR! Pinning time: 15 minutes
3. Take them to the playground. Those other parents who are on their phones know what they are doing! Seriously, I float somewhere between helicopter mom and DFACS being called. It is a happy medium I think. Make sure he doesn’t try to jump off of the TOP of the swing -Pin a pair of boots. Remind him not to eat woodchips – Pin some Ikea bedding. Tell him not to climb UP the slide – Pin fall decorating ideas. We all win at the playground! Pinning time: 15-30 minutes but this may vary if there are no other kids there, you need to push them on the swing, or those moments when they say, “Ma! Look at me!”
4. Put them in the tub- I don’t know about your kid but mine would stay in the tub playing all day if he could. He does a lot of imagination play, talking to his toy dinosaurs and drawing and writing with tub crayons while I hangout and relax. (This only works for those kids who are past tub-drowning age and you do need to be just outside the door and look in on them periodically) Pinning time: 20-25 minutes
5. Sit them on the toilet with:
- An Oriental Trading Company/Toys R Us catalog
- A Look and Find book
- An iPAD/smart phone. I’m sure I will hear people gripe, “Screen time, blah blah blah.” I respect your choice and your child rearing regime. But I get a little bit of Maria time, am able to talk uninterrupted to my husband, wash the dishes or take a crap myself with this trick.
Just think about how much time you have wasted doing a tinker-stinker or looking at that JCrew catalog on the can. Put a small stool under their feet so their legs don’t fall asleep (like mine do) and enjoy your Pinterest time. Pinning time: 15-20 minutes
Happy pinning! Or pedicuring! Or Dove chocolate eating……