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How do you do your housework with a toddler

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#1 Just_Keep_Swimming

Posted 20 January 2013 - 09:20 AM

Hi ladies,

I hope everyone is having a nice weekend.

I was just wondering how everyone manages to do housework with a toddler.  

DS can be quite demanding at times meaning that he wants me to be with him all day and this is usually when he has teeth coming through or he is not feeling to well. Those days I spend taking him for walks or we play together to make him feel better.

However over the last couple of weeks DS has become quite clingy even though is fine health wise and all his 2 year old molars have. broken through.  

During the last few weeks I have been with him and entertained him except for the days he is at pre-school and I am at work. I have neglected my house work and house duties. So today DH have decided to work together and catch up.

However DS has other ideas.

Do you ladies have any tips on how to entertain your toddler as well as tackle the housework.  

Thanks heaps :-)

#2 Aimless

Posted 20 January 2013 - 09:33 AM

I have 2 toddlers and sometimes I just have to give up the housework. But if I really need to do chores, there are a few things that helped: the bubble machine with batteries that spits out bubbles. I put it outside in the backyard and the boys run around for ages. A sand/water table with buckets an scoops. They make a lot of mess which is why I also put it outside but it keeps them entertained. If all else fails or it's hot outside, I turn the tv on. On the days I'm home, I try to do one hour of chores but there are days I just have to give up.

#3 halcyondays

Posted 20 January 2013 - 09:35 AM

I usually do it when they are sleeping. Sometimes mine wants to grab the broom from me, other times clingy, so I find it easier, although more annoying to do it when they are sleeping.
If I have to get something done right now, I use the TV as a babysitter (my youngest loves the television)
Often DH will take toddler for a walk in the pram while I do some, then I take him to the playground while DH does some - I don't mind having a messy house for a couple of years - in a year it all gets much easier!


Posted 20 January 2013 - 09:51 AM

When mine were toddlers I did alot of my housework at night. It''s much quicker. I would even vacuum their rooms at night and they never woke up.

#5 kadoodle

Posted 20 January 2013 - 10:23 AM

Mine help :/

#6 mumma_ox

Posted 20 January 2013 - 10:31 AM

We have a thing made for the little one to stand in when I am working in the kitchen.  Most of the time, she will cry at my feet just so that I pick her up and she is happy once she can see what I am doing.  The box is great because she can see what I'm up to and can even help out if she wants.

As for other jobs, I just try to do as much as I can when I get a few minutes spare.  My little one won't go to sleep until late at night, so the nights are not an option...she's mostly asleep until about 7:30-8ish so I get some time in the early morning to do washing and other bits and pieces.   I also limit the amount of toys she has out at any given point in time - granted it means she picks up every other piece of unattended household paraphenalia, but at least I am not stepping on lego!

I am not a cleaning-freak, and I am comfortable with a bit of mess around...I know that wouldn't work for everyone, but so long as my kitchen is clean and hygienic, then I am happy.

#7 StopTheGoats

Posted 20 January 2013 - 10:32 AM

My toddler 'helps' with the housework. Mostly he just gets under my feet but I pretend to teach him how to do what I'm doing (he has a little cloth and a mini dustbrush) but doesn't mind following me around babbling whilst I get some things done. Luckily, he finds the vacuum quite interesting. I usually save big jobs for the weekend when his Dad can take him for a walk and I do sorting/ organising at night. Some days I just give up and drink wine.

#8 MintyBiscuit

Posted 20 January 2013 - 10:35 AM

I don't wink.gif

But seriously, we have gates up so that DS sort of has the run of the loungeroom and hallway, and the house is set up in such a way that I can see him for the most part if I'm doing things. If I need to pop outside to hang washing, Sesame Street goes on and he sits quite happily for 10-15 minutes. Things that don't get done during the day get done once DH is home when he takes over with DS, and if there's lots to do we both get into it at night and on weekends.

I've found it so variable with DS - sometimes I have loads of time to get things done, other times I have none. The most important part for me has been DH always understanding that I get as much done as I can, and if things aren't done it's not because I'm kicking back. We work together to get stuff done.

ETA - I realise that last bit sounds awful. What I mean is that none of it is "my" housework, it's just our housework that I can do on my own most of the time because I'm home, but sometimes the demands of DS mean it's not do-able. So DH and I both do it

Edited by HollyOllyOxenfree, 20 January 2013 - 10:36 AM.

#9 Guest_Sunnycat_*

Posted 20 January 2013 - 10:42 AM

My DS follows me around and plays with stuff In each room while I clean. It helps that our house is tiny though. He has free reign of the house but honestly the house is the size of a shoe box.

When he is really grumpy I put him in the carrier and continue on but luckily those days are few. I'm lucky with DS because he enjoys independent play as long as he knows where I am he's happy.

ETA: I only do a general clean and vacuum. Mopping and a big clean is done on Sundays when DH is here to do his share.

Edited by Sunnycat, 20 January 2013 - 10:43 AM.

#10 Princess.cranky.pants

Posted 20 January 2013 - 11:07 AM

I just do what I have to do. My toddler is not always happy about it but I have 2 other kids and stuff has to be done.'

I get DD to help. She loves wiping things down. Don't entertain DD all day and encourage independent play. I think it's good for toddlers to learn that mummy has things to do and that there are times when mummy cannot play. DD is getting good at playing interdependently now.

#11 EssentialBludger

Posted 20 January 2013 - 11:19 AM

I'm lucky, DS is more than happy to entertain himself. Or ABC2 entertains him for me. ph34r.gif

Or I give him something to do. Usually a wetwipe and get him to wipe down the cupboards or tv cabinet. He obviously doesn't do a great job but it keeps him busy. laughing2.gif

When he was a baby I just cleaned at night when he slept.

Edited by EssentialBludger, 20 January 2013 - 11:19 AM.

#12 Silver Girl

Posted 20 January 2013 - 11:47 AM

I found it very hard to do any substantial cleaning at that early toddler phase.

I used to rush around madly cleaning while DS sat in his high chair eating snacks and lunch. He was very clingy but would usually happily play in the garden while I hung washing out. He had his own little vacuum cleaner and would follow us around with that.

DH used to carry DS in his carrier while he vacuumed and mopped. Ultimately we had to lower our standards and get the essentials done when we could and during nap/sleep times. Occasionally I had to resort to TV.

I know it's a cliche, but it really will get easier in the next couple of years.

#13 Overtherainbow

Posted 20 January 2013 - 12:11 PM

Night time and nap time were for daily jobs.  I used to get dh to take the kids out on a sat. morning so I could mop an do bathrooms.

I found vacuuming the most challenging task to achieve.  I used to iron standing in a playpen in the playroom.

#14 gabbigirl

Posted 20 January 2013 - 12:45 PM

I have a cleaner now. It was just too hard with two toddlers. For everyday stuff, TV.

#15 Fright bat

Posted 20 January 2013 - 12:52 PM

Dinner gets made and kitchen cleaned up in naptime.

The rest after they go to bed. Laundry gets run through during the day and piled up wet, and all hung up at night. ishwasher gets emptied in the morning first thing, an days dishes get put into it as we go. Toys get tidied up together before dinner (downstairs) and before bed (their room).

I no longer dawdle about housework. I just do it as fast as I can. DH helps. If we both do an hour everyday after they go to bed (as fast as we can) we find that's enough, and we still get a couple hours to ourselves before we go to bed.

#16 noi'mnot

Posted 20 January 2013 - 01:01 PM

Mine is just over two, and "helps". I give her a cloth to help me wipe things and sure the doors and walls get wiped, but I'm only using vinegar/bicarb so it's no big deal. When I'm vacuuming she gets the broom to sweep at the same time, when I'm cooking in the kitchen she gets out her bowls and spoons and does some cooking alongside me, and "helps me mix" and such.

When she was younger if she was being clingy I'd just take her around and explain what I was doing, and engage her with conversations throughout and she was pretty happy with that.

I'm also not a cleanfreak, so that probably helps! original.gif

#17 frozie

Posted 20 January 2013 - 01:08 PM

If DS is the only one home with me, I put on a Thomas DVD as he is obsessed with him although if I have the vacuum on, he follows me round pushing it for me.  If one or two of the other kids are home, they take him outside and play with him.

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