When my kids were little, I wanted to find a way to stay home with them. Small problem, I was a newly divorced single mom with 0% help from Prince Charming. I also had no desire to be on welfare. I worked outside the home, briefly, until a babysitter assaulted Matty (bit him all over his arms till he was black and blue, that is a whole other post, but yes, I pressed charges!) when he was 2. I decided, hey, since I am spending every lousy dime on the damned daycare, why not become the daycare, and get paid for staying home with my sweeties? I love kids, lots and lots, so that’s what I did.
I read all you wonderful young, mamas with your cute as a bug photos with your adorable kidlets and it all rushes back to me: being overwhelmed, yes, and broke, for sure, but also the fun, the joy, how great the holidays are with a cute little ankle biter in the house. I miss the excitement of GOING! TO! THE ZOO! TO SEE MONKEYS, FOR REAL ONES! and being led by the hand by an excited little person to see a cool leaf or a neat bug. That is the good stuff. Only trouble is, when you are in the middle of it you are too derned exhausted to enjoy it.
I thought I would post my favorite smaller kids ideas from time to time, and if you masterful mamas want to, you could leave your great tips in the comments or on your blog and tell me about it here.
Here is my favorite “Letting Them Help- Easter Edition.” Little guys love to help with chores, as a rule, as long as they are cool, big people chores, like sweeping, mopping, or dusting, and not sticky yucky kid chores, like picking up the toys. I got a cheap feather duster (from Target I think) and a bunny-ear headband (viva la Dollartree!). Each day, a different kid got a turn to be the “Dust Bunny.” The Dust Bunny got to wear the cool bunny ears and dust to his or her heart’s content. The kids frickin loved it, and believe me, I never had to hurt my back dusting the baseboards, every low surface stayed so dust free you could manufacture micro-chips. I would dust the up high stuff, or better yet (to them) put the kid on my shoulders to get the high shelves and pictures on the wall.
Try it with your kids and let me know how the Spring Cleaning goes!