We all know how hectic and busy it gets with a baby. Whether you have 1, 2 or 3 children, working, stay at home, or a combination of all, life isn’t straight forward! So to keep my sanity and my household going at a relatively normal pace here are a few things I do so that everything doesn’t pile up on me.
1 The diaper change
Changing a toddlers nappy is a challenge, getting them to stay still, stay lying down and to not get their feet or hands in the nappy…dear lord! My biggest tip is to always change their nappy in the same place at home. I always change Neel in his bathroom. Whether it’s his nappy or clothes, it happens in his bathroom. This way when I say nappy change to him now he recognises that he has to walk into the bathroom. It also keeps the mess contained. If anything should spill over i can mop the floor rather than carpets getting dirty. I keep a few toys in the bathroom for him to mess about with and keep him distracted to make the whole experience for me smoother and with far less tantrums.
2 Clean as you go
This may sound silly but it really does help stop everything piling up on you at the end of the day or week. For example, as I’m cooking and feeding Neel, I’m also cleaning as I go. I’ll wash dirty dishes, put away dry clean dishes and clear away whatever needs going in the fridge so the counter tops are clear. This way once Neel has finished eating I just have his high chair to clean and mop the floor quickly. It also means that when Neel goes down for a nap or to bed I’m not wasting precious relaxation time tidying up and cleaning the kitchen! Let’s face it, a hot cuppa is far more comforting to think about than cleaning a kitchen when you’re putting your little ones to bed!
3 Tidy up with your toddler
This tip is also so that once I come back down after putting Neel to sleep I can just put my feet up for a bit. Before heading up for bath and bed time, I ask Neel to pass me his toys so we can tidy up the living room. He understands the word “Pass” now so he will happily make a game out of it and pass me one toy at a time to put away in his toy chest. I’m secretly hoping this gets him in the habit of doing it himself when he is a little older! This way when I come back down the living room is all tidy and I can eat my dinner or just put my feet up for a bit.
4 Keeping the bathroom and bath tub clean
We all know NOT to leave your baby unattended or unsupervised when they are in the bath at any point. But this doesn’t mean you can’t be productive while watching them and singing songs together. When Neel is in the bath I will give the sink a quick wipe and clean, disinfect the toilet and wipe the outside and mop his bathroom floor all without walking away from him. When he is done with his bath, I drain the tub and turn the shower on low. He loves playing with the shower, so I’ve turned it into a bit of a game. We give the toys he has used a shower to get rid of any residual soap from the bath, we shower the bath tub down and shower down his non slip mat till all the bubble bath and soap has gone. Neel loves doing this, then It’s out and ready for bed! All clean for tomorrow :).
5 When baby goes to sleep, SIT DOWN!
This really saves me from going insane. No exaggeration! When Neel goes to sleep, before doing anything else, I sit down and have a hot cup of tea or something to eat in peace. This gives me the mental calm which, lets face it, is very needed to then get going with whatever needs doing and before he wakes up for the madness to begin again.
6 Multiple toy boxes
We all have jobs to get on with at home, there is always something that needs doing, and it couldn’t be more boring for toddlers. To stop Neel getting cranky on me during these times I keep multiple little toy boxes in the areas I need them. I have an old large biscuit tin in the kitchen with a few toys, I have books by the side of my bed for when I’m changing sheets or tidying away clothes, and a few in his bathroom for changing times. By doing this he doesn’t get bored when I’m cooking, hanging out laundry, tidying away clothes or changing sheets etc.
7 Be organised the night before
This is simple, keep bags packed and ready to go the night before. I keep Neels nursery bag, his sweater and coat, hat and shoes all together on the sofa so we aren’t running around in the morning. I keep his set of clothes he is going to wear in the morning ready in his bathroom too. Also keep your own work or day bag ready. I pack my work bag and keep my lunch ready boxed in the fridge so I just have to grab and go in the mornings. It just makes your mornings go smoother and you don’t forget anything in the hustle of things.
8 A family calendar
This is by far my favourite. Get a family calendar! I have one which has columns for each of us. It keeps my husband and me on the same page as to who is doing what and what appointments we have. Everything from our work shifts, Neels nursery times, doctors appointments, any upcoming events or groups we go to, meet up with friends, it all goes on the calendar. This way there is no confusion on dates, and we can both refer to the calendar at any point to know what is happening that week or month.
So folks, these are my words of wisdom! There is nothing ground breaking about my little tips, but they are small steps which have really helped me keep on top of things at home while working. There is no handbook, just us mums and dads who can share what has worked for us. What works for you? Share away!
Thanks for stopping by,
until next time xoxo