These last few weeks have been quite a learning experience for us. With Chuck gone, the girls and I had to come up with a routine that worked for us and took into consideration that for most of the day I only have the use of one arm. My goal was to have something fun and exciting for Fiona to do each day that would keep her sane... So I thought I would share my toddler tamers with you. Some were more successful than others, I am sure it just depends on your toddler.
1. Crayola Color Wonder- These are those markers that only color on the "magic" color wonder paper. They quickly solved the problem of having to closely supervise color time. Plus Fiona got a kick just out of taking the caps on and off. Then she tried to eat the tips off a few of them :)
2 and 3. Dollar Store Finds... Animals that grow in water. This is really a two parter because I thought taking Fiona to the dollar store to pick out a toy would be fun. Yet it really does NO good to walk down an isle of toys and ask a one year old to pick something. She just wanted everything... started screaming for something yellow, then threw everything I handed her out of the cart and started grabbing for anything she could get her hands on. I escaped the store with a pack of capsules that grow into animals when you put them in water.
I tried to show her one in a little cup, but it took to long to grow and she lost interest. So I threw them all at once in a large bowl gave her a spoon and told her to make me animal soup. She delighted at the stirring, and the thought of "cooking" in the kitchen with me. Then she tried to eat all of the little sponge animals :)
4. Stickers - I bought a few packs from WalMart and a blank notebook for her to stick them in. This activity was great and lasted for days... we would do a few new stickers each morning.
I do recommended that you do not encourage the sticking of stickers to your face... we had to cut some of Fiona's hair to get a few off her sideburns (yikes).
5. Fort Building- This I have to say was the most successful thing we did. For whatever reason all of Fiona's old toys became new and exciting once inside the fort. We left it up for a week. She loved curling up inside to listen to stories and to play with her light up toys.
6. Ball Play Set from WalMart- ok... so before Chuck left we saw this at the store and thought it was cool... like the old school ball pits at fast food restaurants. However, the product was a little deceiving, I mean on the package it looks like the kids are just swimming in balls, but then when you open it up there are not even enough to fill the bottom. She still loved it though, however it lost it's appear after a couple of days.
7. Naked Time... just the freedom to roam the house in the nude. This is risky business when you have not potty trained, but found that it was worth the clean up.
8. Something seasonal... Pumpkin Carving - Perhaps a little advanced. I thought she might enjoy playing with the stuff inside the pumpkin but she wanted nothing to do with it until it had a face on it... then she loved it. We even found this cute video on YouTube about making a jack-o-latern and she asks me to sing it all the time.
9. YouTube - Can I just say that I love YouTube! Fiona has about 20 or so videos that she loves. Most of them are renditions of The Wheels on the Bus which is currently her favorite tune. But she also loves "Name-o" which is the BINGO song and pretty much anything with a train in it. You can create a playlist and then it just plays all your favorite videos in a row. I have like 30 minutes worth all lined up... she asks for it everyday.
I especially like that she enjoys this video which is of my favorite band... she just like it because there is a giraffe and an elephant on a bicycle.
10. Big Sister Jobs - Last but not least, Fiona does not quite understand the whole big sister thing... and most of the time she just ignores Daphnie. But boy of boy does she like to push her in the swing. At first it kind of freaked me out because she would do it so hard and fast... but Daphnie doesn't seem to mind, and she is buckled in, so I let them both enjoy.
And there you have it... What kinds of things do you do to pass the time with your toddlers?