When I was growing up, I was surrounded --- I mean, surrounded with children! Not only did I have eleven siblings in the end, but our family naturally tended to hang out with other big families. How did my mom keep up? What kind of baby distracting tips did she cleverly come up with while she was busy doing her daily household tasks? Ahhh... read on.
Sinerio: Baby is crying in the crib because he woke up and wants to see everybody. Baby is bored and needs some attention.
Mom's Solution: Send in the three or four-year-old into the room to entertain the baby with talking and playing. Before you know it, BOTH baby and toddler are distracted. Baby is still in the crib as literal captive audience to the entertaining sibling who is talking and playing on the floor. (Baby-safe toys are also important here).
Aha! Kudos to my mother! That was a smart plan!
The other day, my husband came home from a meeting with someone. The person he met up with needed marriage counselling --- something my husband is willing to do to be helpful, but finds it the toughest kind of work to do. He came in looking very solemn and he said, "If I haven't ever told you how much I appreciate you... I don't know where I would be without you and [our son] in my life." It led to a sweet time of us both expressing our love and appreciation for each other. I don't want my readers to misunderstand --- like you, we aren't lovey-dovey everyday --- we have tough days too. But this moment, along with other sweet moments was well-worth the mention and treasuring, as we reflected on God's gift to us of each other. In fact, God gifted us with something good, in spite of ourselves! I dare say, I don't deserve to have the wonderful man that I have, but God is good.
You may be wondering what this has to do with my blog on motherhood. It's simple. Love your husband. Love him for his sake, for your sake, for God's sake (no, really) and for your children's sake. Not only is it good for you and your hubby to choose to love each day and to forgive each other for each other's sake, but it's good for your children to have a mom and dad that love one another. This world is so full of brokenness, let's not add to the mess.
So what do you do when you gotta make dinner for the adults, but the baby wants to get into everything? No, problem! Plop him in his highchair and let him keep you company! If your baby is the right age for baby puff snacks or rice crispy cereal, he can nibble on that while you work. Just be sure he is close enough for you to watch him eat safely, but far enough from the stove so that he's safe from your working with grease and a knife etc. It's simple, but such a necessary trick for getting dinner done!
Anyone want to add your ideas and input on how you have entertained your baby when you are trying to make dinner? Your comments and ideas are welcome! :)
Vacuum cleaners are not the only distracting sounds for my baby! Here is an excellent, easy way to get him to be content a little longer in his crib while I'm hoisting off a load of laundry: I can play "peek-a-boo" with him!
Here's how it works for you and your baby, too: When you have just left your baby's room and he is starting to get upset, just poke your head back into the door way and say "peek-a-boo!" or whatever it is that makes your baby laugh, but then quickly hide behind the wall again. After a couple seconds, pop into view again with another "Peek-a-boo!", and hide again. Repeat this just a few more times, waiting longer between each time. At last, you make your breakaway! Get that laundry started! ;)
Today, I had a good start on the day, getting breakfast together, washing dishes, getting started on laundry, nursing baby, putting him down for a nap, and so forth. It's great to have him down for a nap, allowing me time to accomplish housework, home office stuff, even a cuppa coffee and computer time, but once that nap is over, then what?
Well, sure enough, my baby boy finished his nap with a cry instead of waking up all sweet 'n stuff. What's a mom to do when you have a full day of stuff ahead? Distraction! The baby needs something distracting to do of course! Here is what I did today: I went into his room and changed his diaper, nursed him a little, then I put him back in his crib. That's where it could have been a problem, but I quickly and excitedly put toys in his crib. He was interested. But before he could really think about me leaving him there, I was already grabbing the vacuum cleaner that was in his room. I started it up and vacuumed his carpet, and went right out of the room with it, and continued to vacuum. Between a clean diaper, milk in his tummy, fun toys now in the crib, and an interesting machine mom is going crazy with, hmmm... junior simply forgot to be upset!
Hope this is inspiring for my mom-friends and readers! Check in tomorrow for another one of my distraction secrets!
Happy Mother's Day, one day early, to all my family and friends who share in this wonderful privilege and task of mothering!
Becoming a mother has definitely changed the way I look at how I spend time. I used to, as a single woman, have two jobs. I was trying to make it financially and successfully, in this world. But then, one day, I married a great guy and I just worked one job. In a short time, I was pregnant, so when I was about 5 or 6 weeks from my due date, I left the workplace to come home and be ready for my son's birth.
Today, for various reasons, financial pressures have become a strain on our family. But the good news is that my husband and I know that money isn't everything. As I weigh how to be a helpful wife including in finances, I see every hour in such a different light than when I had no child. It seems that every week, my boy grows and changes --- I don't want to miss it! And I know that he needs me around, not only to nurse him, but he needs me emotionally especially at this age. I admit that I struggle with want of certain things, but when it comes down to it, I know I can't spend a bunch of time on a job or two, away from my baby! I just cannot --- it would hurt me, like a knife in my heart! Is the point I'm making that I could never have a job to help out? No. It's just that money isn't as important to me now (even though I'd still like to have it). I'd rather be spending time with my son, and buying thrift store clothes at this time in our lives.
Cherish every moment. Hold your baby a little longer. It's a privilege to be a mother!