7 Ways My Toddler Helps Clean

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I was happily going about our day and I realized, my kid helps me a lot. Sure, it sometimes makes the work harder, but much of my housekeeping is done with toddler in tow. Kids can clean, and kids SHOULD clean, since it helps the family and they will one day have to do it for themselves.

So here’s my list of seven ways that my toddler helps me clean up around the house:

1. Fetching something

My two year old can fetch diapers for her brother, her shoes, my water bottle if I’m stuck on the couch nursing… you get the gist of it.

2. helping unload the dishwasher

I take the knives and sharp things out first, but I do let her (carefully) help even with some glass items. If she has a stool to stand on, she can sort the silverware by herself.

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My 1.5 year old helper. In the past year, she has learned the art of sorting!
3. wiping up a spill

Lots of spills around here. I usually come help or make sure that she’s done a good job. Miri knows where the paper towels and napkins are, and can usually get one herself and clean up.

4. straightening up

Probably our least favorite chore, but my toddler can definitely help straighten her toys and other household items. Especially if I tell her where to put them, and she gets to hold things that don’t belong to her. She likes fetching and putting away things that belong to others more than she likes to clean her own stuff, and I get it, other people’s stuff is cooler and more exciting.

5. throwing something in the trash or recycling

Goes along well with straightening up. We have full sized trash and recycling cans, but she’s mastered the art of stepping on the little lid flipper. I do still tell her which objects need to go in the trash can, and which need to be recycled.

6. assist in sibling care

I know people have lots of opinions about whether big sister or big brother should be allowed to help care for their younger siblings. My short answer is: yes, definitely, it’s great practice and we work and play as a family. It is hard not to squelch this little desire to help, but I’ve read about a million articles saying you shouldn’t, so I let my daughter do as much as she can.

This looks like assisting with onesie snaps or zippers, doing the velcro part of the diaper change, helping put baby’s socks on or arm through the arm hole. Sometimes I let her bounce the bouncy chair (with supervision, so she doesn’t bounce her brother across the room). Speaking of which, we love this bouncy seat. (Amazon Affiliate Link*)

7. help make a bed

Not that we make our beds every day at this stage of life, but when we do, my little one can help. She can take the pillows off and put them back on, and pull on or off one corner of the blanket. This actually IS helpful, and means I don’t have to do all the work on both sides, just go over it quickly when she’s done.

So that’s it! How do your little ones help around the house? This post is linked up with Kelly over at 7 Quick Takes.


*as part of the Amazon Affiliates program, if you buy something after going through my link, I get a small commission. All thoughts, opinions, etc. are honest and my own of course 🙂

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Bedrest, burgers, and baby’s first ornament

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Saturday

Healthy foods! My OB wanted me to start eating healthier, so I sauteed some chicken breast and put it in one of those southwest salad packs. It was actually delicious, and we will likely be having this again. Unfortunately my healthy eating kick sort of dwindled this week as other health problems popped up *spoiler alert: I’m very, probably, totally fine* and I am glad to have a chicken over salad dinner “recipe” that we all like in my arsenal.

Sunday

Got very dizzy and short of breath in church, and had to stay seated most of the time since I was afraid I’d get worse and pass out. Made it up for communion and then dodged out of there before I got too bad to drive home. Made it home, and Bodie came down and got Miriam and I out of the car. Laid around trying to recover, but had several more dizzy / short of breath spells and so Bodie ordered some take out for dinner.

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Sunday Family Meals Link Up Vol. 2

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Welcome to the second edition of Sunday Family Meals! For those of you who haven’t joined us before:
Here you can share your posts about a family meal you had this week. You can include the recipe or not, but I love seeing pictures of family tables and hearing about how you break bread with your loved ones. Another goal of this link up is to encourage others (and myself) to put some thought into making at least one meal out of the week a special time for family, with some mindfulness, preparation, and care. But if your awesome family meal included hot dogs and slurpees, go for it. That’s cool too. What’s important here is the family.
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Toddlers push boundaries – our approach to loving discipline

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When we set out figuring out how to discipline our child I knew a few things: first of all, I did not want to screw up my kid or give her problems later in life. I knew that there had to be some kind of order. However it happened, I did not want wild kids with zero boundaries. I did not want our method of discipline to exhaust me. (Hard is okay, but it had to be manageable). I also knew that I didn’t want to be cruel, violent, or for my discipline to lack meaning.

What I’ve settled on (for now, I tend to change things when they stop being effective), is that boundaries work for us. Meaning what we say works for us. Natural consequences work for us. We don’t spank, we don’t do time-outs, we don’t assign out punishments that are the same for every offense.

My two year old is a professional boundary pusher
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