Thursday, February 16, 2012

occupy the toddler: making hearts

in the last few days i've come to understand that when my almost 3-year old tells me he has "a great idea," i know, i am bound to be cleaning something up within 10 minutes flat.

apparently, the same can be said of my efforts to occupy the toddler.

case in point: the valentine's day activity i prepared in the hopes of getting something done, i don't even remember what. 

it started off well enough. i had grand plans of delivering these handmade valentines to give to his teachers.

and the boy really did have a jolly good time. and the girl and i had a jolly good time watching him create.

but after only 10 minutes flat, i had a great big mess to clean up.

and a toddler and baby to entertain once again.


to the mothers out there that manage to keep their home consistently tidy because you've managed to make housekeeping fun and get your kids involved,  your laundry done like clockwork even though you cloth diaper your babes, and your arts and crafts table is productive and civilized most of the time, i bow down to your awesomeness and  am desperate to know the caramilk centre secret to your success. 

if you don't know how you do it because you are magic incarnate, at least answer me this (or the simple answer is that i just need to get my act together): how in the world do you keep your toddler from dipping his entire hand in the paint jar? 


and in case you were wondering, i forgot to finish the valentine's for his teachers. good ideas and best intentions. yep. i need to work on following through on those. i know it. i'll be better tomorrow.


  1. cool idea with the pinched toilet roll heart-stamp.

    as to a mess - inevitable. I'd go with one giant sheet of paper to cover the table and let him at it. after it's dry, cut it up into cards. Or, do it on the easel or outside in summer. But, really finger painting is unavoidable so just embrace it. Once (when Christine was not home of course) I rolled up the carpet put down a giant roll of paper on the laminate floor, put tea in painting clothes (or maybe just her undies) and put out dishes of finger paint everywhere. she absolutely loved it...full body painting it was by the end. we did it together while kai was napping, and i threw her in the bath afterwards. LOL. I knew what I was in for, but I also knew how much fun it would be. Turned into a great memory for me, even if she doesn't remember it anymore. It was worth the time i spent scrubbing paint out of the cracks in the flooring. LOL

    1. what a great story!!!i guess the problem is, i know what i'm in for but i'm in denial anyway. z always has a great time. i'm always bewildered by the occupied time vs. clean up ratio! oh well. i truly am looking forward to summer time when we can do all of this outside. then i can just hose it all down. in the mean time, i just need to be prepared for reckless abandon. there will be two of them getting creative at the same time after all. did you know your goddaughter did laps around our the apartment now. LAPS. she's starting to climb, too. and she thinks she can jump.

  2. We've been sticking to water colours lately, the dry disk kind and water colour pencils. It's less messy, but the paper gets pretty soaked. When we use the jars of paint we spend a whole bunch of time picking colours and pouring them into a plastic egg carton, and then after a little painting he's pretty much done. All he wants to do is pour the paint.
    With the ol' 3rd birthday coming up, I'm thinking I'm going to put a little package together for S, including new tempera paint blocks (mel + doug make nice ones) and some stamps and stamp pads.

    1. watercolours. smart. what brand do you use? z is less impressed by pencils and doesn't "get" watercolours, alas. ikea actually does it well but it's hard for us to get out there.

      plastic egg carton, smart! and i love the art package for s.'s bday!!! great idea. we're kinda stumped for z's. but we'll figure it out.