So I know there have been a lot of ideas going around social media and the internet about things you can do to entertain your kids or toddlers during quarantine…but I’m here today to post about the things your TODDLERS can do without you do give you a BREAK. Like the things that require little to no effort on your part, so you can clean up the kitchen, prep a meal, write that email, or just mindlessly scroll memes on Instagram cause YOU NEED A MINUTE. One rule – if you are going to judge me for anything I put in this post, you are not allowed to keep reading…these are desperate times ;).
Do watercolors. I don’t know what it is about watercolors, but my girls are obsessed and it’s providing hours of entertainment. I actually leave them set up on our coffee table outside with little cups of water ready to go, and they’ll just randomly walk out there and start painting. They’ll do it for a WHILE, and there’s never a mess other than maybe a bit of spilled water. Sometimes I just sit on the couch behind them and have my coffee or work, but sometimes I get sucked in to painting with them and it’s surprisingly therapeutic ;). I just got them a bunch of cheap sets online and they work great! But if this becomes a hobby for me I might have to upgrade our supplies….ha!
Invest in a trampoline or bounce house. I know times are tough, but if you have the means and the space, a trampoline (we have the Skywalker 10′) or bounce house will save you. My girls spend SO much time on the trampoline (and used to spend just as much time in this bounce house before we had the trampoline!) and it gets so much energy out! Win win!
Watch the garbage truck on garbage day! If your kids aren’t already in to garbage trucks like mine are, explain it to them and they will be! We spent a good 30 minutes this morning watching the garbage truck on our street.
Give them random tasks. Sometimes I give my girls an idea or something to do that I know will take them a while to figure out or complete. Like today, I asked them to move a pile of white rocks from one spot to another…child abuse? Maybe. But they felt accomplished and I got a minute to breathe. I think what actually might be child abuse is when I ask them to do things I know they can’t…Like when I told them they could try to help each other climb over the fence. Oh well, they had fun trying…
If it’s raining, let them splash/play in it! We have fully embraced the spring rain this week by either walking around the neighborhood or letting them splash in the backyard. I actually sit under the covered portion of our patio or just inside the house and let them go to town. Then we use it as an excuse to take an extra long bath afterwards! I got these boots on Amazon Prime – I love that they’re matte! They seem comfy for the girls, and I love that they can use the handles to pull them on themselves (I can tell they are super proud when they put them on). They come in 9 colors and are only $24!
Bath bombs or bubbles. My girls are so into bath bombs or bubble baths right now! Of course I still have to be in the bathroom with them, but I can sit in there with my phone or computer while they play ;).
Build them a fort. We love using these blankets from Urban Outfitters and they happen to be on sale right now. And if they get bored in that fort…shove their table in there ;)….
Tablets. Guys, I don’t think they’re that big of a deal. My girls actually learn a lot from them, and they kind of will self regulate. They’ll play them for 15-20 minutes and then lose interest and go find a toy or go outside. We have these from Amazon, and they can play games or watch episodes we’ve downloaded. We’ve also downloaded a bunch from Disney+, which is so great!
Movies/Disney+. Speaking of Disney+, if you don’t already have it, get it. It’s $7 a month for literally everything Disney – no brainer. My girls’ current favorites are Monsters, Inc., Moana, all the Toy Story movies, and Coco. It’s so fun to find old movies from when I was a kid and show them! We also recently watched the new Pixar movie Onward…I may or may not have bawled hysterically at the ending. Everything’s fine…I’m fine.
Hope that helps someone out there…whether it’s to actually give you ideas to have some time to yourself or to just make you feel better about not always making beautiful crafts every second with your toddler ;).
If you haven’t seen it already, check out this post about how we are keeping a WFH schedule with toddlers, and check out this post for some more ideas on what to do with them!