Getting ready in the morning is one thing. Getting ready in the morning with a toddler is another. Your routine has most definitely changed since welcoming a toddler into your life. Not only must you become the best multi-tasking individual the world has ever seen, but you must also ensure the toddler is occupied while you finish getting ready.
It is a difficult thing, but it's absolutely do-able. With these 10 tips, you'll be getting ready in the morning while caring for a toddler like it's effortless (well, let's not go that far). Read them, reflect on them and practice them yourself. You'll be looking forward to tomorrow's new routine in no time!
10 ASK FOR HELP
Children love to be asked to help. Even if this means applying your make-up (the less pigmented items, of course) or even passing you soap while you shower, any little thing to have them assist in your routine will make them feel needed and happy.
Toddlers love to watch their parents get ready. It shows them what to expect when they're older and it also allows them to see their parents in a very honest and productive state. When you ask your toddler to help, no matter how mundane the task may seem, it will reward them more than you know.
9 PLAY LIVELY MUSIC
Music will allow the energy to lift and the fun to begin. It will also potentially help your child keep busy while you get ready. You can have a little dance party or sing along to the music. Anything to make getting ready while you're caring for a toddler a bit more joyful!
Music naturally uplifts, depending on genre. We suggest you put on classic pop (knowing it will be age appropriate) or their favourite Disney tunes. They'll surely have more pleasure hanging out while you get ready in the morning.
8 PLAY FREEZE DANCE
Freeze dance is a great game to play in order to get ready more efficiently in the morning while caring for your toddler. All you'll need is your phone or music player near by and your toddler on their 'dance floor.'
Begin by explaining they must dance as wildly as they can while the music plays, then, when it suddenly stops, they must freeze. The instructions are easy and the "DJ" can easily press start and go at their leisure. What a great, easy and creative way to make getting ready in the morning a breeze.
7 ASK THEM TO SORT
Sorting is a great activity that many toddlers love to do. It's also a great way to strengthen their fine motor skills. This activity is very simple and very educational. It also will depend on the toddler's skill level. If they are learning more about colours, we suggest you take out blocks or paper of different shades and colours.
Begin by placing them in different piles. Tell the toddler to continue. They'll be busy for hours while you get ready, and you'll know that the game they're playing will help them learn.
6 SUGGEST A STORY
Story time does not have to be as simple as reading a book. You can get creative with story time and welcome a chance to make a tale up, just the two of you. If your toddler is communicating well, going back and forth with a story will be so fun.
It will allow their imagination to run wild. So, as the parent/caretaker, begin with a sentence. Allow the toddler to continue the story. Skill-permitting, you're welcome to go back and forth until the story is so wild and obscure you'll both be on the floor laughing. This is a great way to make getting ready a breeze!
5 PREP BREAKFAST
This is a very simple and practical tip for those early mornings with a toddler. Not only are you pressured to get ready yourself, you often have to ensure your toddler is changed, fed and dressed. So, why not have those things prepared as best you can the night before?
Better yet, why not have them help you by reading their next morning's breakfast? Simply take a recipe that's simple to put together the night before and wake to a yummy and nutritious meal for all to enjoy- toddler included.
4 SCREEN TIME
Yes, the much needed excuse to pull out the iPad, tablet or television. Sometimes, screen time has to be welcomed early in the morning, in order to successfully get ready for the day. Though many medical professionals recommend to hold back on any exposure of screens until the age of 2, if your toddler will sit still for some educational videos while you get your tasks done, everything in moderation could be the key here.
We know that there are days where there seems to be no other choice. Sometimes, you have to do what you have to do, and that may mean briefly busting out the screens earlier than you would have liked.
3 PILE THE BOOKS
Toddlers are (often) not ready to read by themselves. They prefer books with many photos and some assistance with the reading. But, if you hand them a pile of hard-covered books to stack, they will often do so.
Books are a great object to play with. They're a great shape: a shape you can stack, stand up and read through. Don't be surprised if they play with their pile of books for hours. The opportunities are endless.
2 SENSORY PLAY
Any type of sensory play will keep your toddler occupied while you're getting ready in the morning. If you have games ready in time for the morning, like putting teethers in jello for them to grab out, by all means do so!
Prepare for those busy mornings you know you'll need some extra help with. This type of activity may be messy, but it will be fun and will surely only take minutes to wipe down their chair. We just highly recommend placing a mat underneath their chair while they get their jello.
Though a toddler can not fold perfectly, or as well as their parent, it's a great activity to keep them busy while you get ready. Have you ever noticed how much longer it takes you to fold your clean laundry while your toddler is in your care?
Well, imagine how much fun they'd have in a pile of unfolded, clean laundry to hide in, jump in, and attempt to fold like their parent. Try and demonstrate an easy facecloth fold for them. This will keep them busy for hours, we assure you.