I’ve been getting many questions about how I tackle these projects between working full-time, having a toddler and family, managing the house, and everything that needs to be done in between getting projects done. I have a few ideas to share on what works for me. Predominately around how to occupy your toddler’s attention while you’re trying to get stuff done.
First of all – I am totally going to go on a tangent – I want to be working on dispelling the myth that these projects happen at warp speed. Sometimes when you’re following along over social media, things seem to happen rather quickly, and I can assure you that is not the case. Even if this were someone’s full-time job (which it rarely is), it still would take longer than what more people see online. I can bet that 99% someone’s toddler, baby, kid, husband, whatever needs something during these projects and they don’t always happen in the most perfectly sequential order. Okay, tangent over.
Despite the above, I still get discouraged when things take too long. However, if you’ve been following my mudroom updates, they started close to 6 weeks ago. In six weeks I’ve accomplished a DIY cushion and cover for the bench, trimming out the window and shiplap walls.
Now, when I say it out loud, that’s A LOT, and I need to pat myself on the back. But when you play the compare it game and see people on social media breezing through six projects in that time, you wonder what you’re doing wrong.
Keeping Your Toddler Busy Starts with Quality Time
The truth is, even though there are moments where I don’t sleep (I stay up super late, then I wake up early so I can tackle things) and a lot of these completed projects are a team effort. Team effort meaning, my husband steps up on the weekends and will take Sloane on little walks and entertain her when I’m deep into a project. Sloane also steps up; she will get totally involved (when safe) in my projects, and when she’s bored, she will go off and play with whatever activity set we have in front of her.
That brings me to the point of this post: how to keep your toddler entertained while you get shit done.
I have a bunch of fun toys and activity sets Sloane (who is two at the time of writing this) is totally obsessed with. By obsessed I mean an hour or more of play time with these toys which is incredible for a toddler.
I will also preface with the fact that Sloane’s personality has always been one that gets highly committed to toys she’s playing with. I also always make very certain to have some good quality time with her before setting her up with these toys. Whether we are sitting and having a tea party in the morning, or going out for walks or to the park, I don’t expect her to sit perfectly and play by herself with little attention beforehand while I am on hour 1000 of my project. She needs that quality time before she will play on her own for a little bit.
Assess your toddler’s needs. If the activity set isn’t working right away, they might just need some quality time with you first. Then go back and try again.
The pet salon is what has been keep Sloane the most occupied these days, but she loves her easel and tea set too. Good luck, mamas! Anything to get a project done!!!