5 Things I Wish I’d Done Better Before They Became Toddlers
Thursday, March 21st, 2013
When I became a mom for the first time, I was able to read all the books, ok…skim all the books and get a game plan in my head for how I wanted to tackle this little person I was going to raise.
When I had one child, I had a minute to breathe, think straight and follow through with discipline, set expectations, and all that good stuff.
Enter the twins.
We are full on into the three’s with our second and third child which is a double dose of trouble, fun, and love all wrapped up into one chaotic time period. Quite honestly, I thought I was a pretty decent parent until I started raising these two, and now, I question myself daily.
Let’s just say, there is a lot of what Tracy Hogg from the famed Baby Whisperer series calls, “Accidental Parenting” happening in our home and we are paying for it. So here are five things I wish I would have done differently prior to these little lovebugs becoming toddlers – because as they say – “set out as you mean to go” because whatever habits are established at a young age, well folks, they are pretty tough to break without an epic battle.
Allowing Snacks to be Consumed Around the House You know those handy-dandy “snack-traps” that are supposed to hold everything inside the cup, outside of what the child wants to eat? Yeah, they figure that little contraption out and it became entertaining to spread the goods all over the floor, in the couch cushions, and um, our bed. Do what our friend’s do and have set locations within the home where food can be consumed. You’ll thank me later.
Having a Water Cup at Bedtime When the twins were little, I was just plain wiped out. So, I did what I wasn’t supposed to do, and gave them milk at bedtime. This made it possible for me to sneak out of their room with two happy campers. Stop judging – I can hear your gasp through the computer.
Then, we swapped that out for water when the teeth started to come in and the brushing of teeth wasn’t happening so thoroughly. Because we were “good parents” and stuff.
Well, now we’re potty training and this water cup habit means there will be no dry morning diapers for a while considering we can’t break the night time water. It also means we often deal with regular leakage. Let’s just say the pee smell, I’m so not a fan. Oh and that whole, no more purchasing those expensive diapers…yeah, we’re still doing that.
Giving into Whining I’m sure you can imagine what our home is like now that we have given in to whining regularly. In my sheer exhaustion I gave in all too frequently. So now, we don’t get words requesting things – we get a grunt or whiney plea.
I will say that we’ve amped up the use of our reply to these shenanigans by saying, “use your words love, what do you want? Mommy can’t understand unless you use your words.” And we’ve made great progress.
Popcorn at Target Who doesn’t love Target? Coffee, shopping, and well, popcorn for the kids too! This tradition of popcorn at Target started when my oldest was a toddler in an effort to get my shopping done in peace. You’d think I’d learn my lesson. Let’s just say it’s not pretty when the popcorn machine is broken. When you get a treat for them each time you go to the store so you can zip through your shopping list with a smidge of sanity in place, you are putting yourself in for a tantrum when that machine breaks or you have to wait until they pop more. So, make it a habit to just bring your own snack and never introduce them to the Target popcorn so you don’t have depend on the bullseye for your sanity – at least, not in that way. Fun scarves and coffee are still on the table.