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how do you get anything done?!
am I crazy thinking i can do anything but watch baby?


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#1 misse10

Posted 01 February 2013 - 03:19 PM

My DS 8mo is tummy crawling and into everything (as they are). we have a playpen but he cries whenever he's put into that so I leave it for when i really need him safe (for my bathroom, shower, clothes line etc time). he loves getting into everything and learning about the world, but that means that unless he's asleep i spend my life picking him up and moving him away from the dog/cupboards etc.

i kind of expected this, but it leaves me feeling like i'm wasting a lot of time during the day when i should be getting household stuff done. paying bills, organising tradesmen, online shopping, cooking, whatever people do when they're not working (i'm determined to be good housewife even though i'm not sure what that means yet!)

am i deluded thinking that i can get time for this stuff? or am i missing a trick/tactic?  it seems all my girlfriends can have multiple kids while cooking nutritious meals and having clean, well maintained houses...so it seems possible but that i just haven't worked out how/the balance.

when/how do you guys do it?!?

#2 ~Supernova~

Posted 01 February 2013 - 03:26 PM

I let DS go crazy lol. We have locks on cupboards that are dangerous (glass, chemicals etc) but he has free reign of the saucepans, junk draw, plastic cupboard, and utensils. Yeah, I spend my day picking up after him, but he has fun, and I get a lot done. I also let him go in my wardrobe, he has a shoe fetish haha

ETA: You just need to relax. If all the dangerous stuff is out of reach, what's the worst that can honestly happen? IMO they NEED to explore and make mischief, it's how they learn.

Edited by Mareek, 01 February 2013 - 03:33 PM.


#3 MissM86

Posted 01 February 2013 - 04:02 PM

I agree with Mareek- just let him crawl around and make a mess. I have never used a playpen and DD has had free reign of the house. She was walking at 8 months and now at 16 months is a huge climber. I have given up pulling her off tables, chairs, benches etc and just let her go for it. I would drive myself mad if I chased her around all day.

Childproof the cupboards you don't want him to access, secure the oven dials (DD constantly turns the gas on) and toilet lid (DD climbs in yuk) and just get on with your day. Every so often, do a big tidy up behind him and put everything back (But not too often or you will feel constantly defeated)!

#4 Ehill

Posted 01 February 2013 - 04:31 PM

Yes, just make certain areas safe and let him go crazy.  DS has 3 kitchen cupboards that he pulls apart every single day about 5 times.  They are plastic stuff and I just chuck them all back in in 10 secs flat afterwards for it to be destructed half an hour later.  All the toys are in the open area off the kitchen and he can trash that as much as he likes as often as he wants.  So that is how I cook and do stuff in the kitchen.

When I shower he trashes a bathroom cupboard (my DH's  tongue.gif ).  Although this morning he pulled all the toilet paper off the roll which is still sitting on a pile on the flr of the ensuite.  Pffft....care factor.....nil, I will just grab my paper off the floor for the next day!  laugh.gif

He snacks in his highchair while I do stuff.  Find finger food he likes.  

So in short......lower your standards and give him stuff to destroy.

Having said that, I am a bit stuffed outside at the moment.  So no advice there as my area around the washing line is not very safe so I do that one while he is eating or sleeping.

#5 axiomae

Posted 01 February 2013 - 07:01 PM

My tricks with my 7 month old when I need to keep her safe while I do something are the jolly jumper and the jumperoo - I can pop her in both of those and she will play happily in them while I vacuum, hang out washing, cook etc

#6 Babetty

Posted 01 February 2013 - 07:07 PM

Both my kids loved 'clothesline time'. They got to see washing flapping in the breeze and being shaken out, and pegs are the best toys ever!! So just take her with you and let her go for it (occasionally I would need to throw a beach towel over some of the line for shade, depending on time of day).

Cooking - either finger food in the high chair or let them into the tupperware or saucepan cupboards.

Toilet - put down at door to our bedroom, line of sight to the ensuite and watch her crawl!

Shower, well, that was after they were in bed...it's my me time!!

Basically, keep them within sight and let chaos reign for a while - giving them the junk mail provides heaps of entertainment and is surprisingly easy to clean up.


#7 meggs1

Posted 01 February 2013 - 07:12 PM

I did/do a combination of:

Racing around at nap time, after bedtime.
Housework while wearing an ergo
Letting him wreak havoc on the safe cupboards - to this end I have the most accessable one full of Tupperware plus an Ikea unit which holds 4 baskets (toys) and 4 shelves (books) and 2 big dinosaurs which he can pull out.
Letting him "help" - playing with pegs, dustpan, etc
Playpen/gate + screaming if I have to deal with something hot/poisonous etc.  
Lowering standards



#8 mandala

Posted 01 February 2013 - 07:15 PM

I found that it did get better once DS was a bit more mobile and a bit more verbal. He started to understand no, and come to me when I called (sounds like a dog!). He also got better once he could stand up without pulling on things - I didn't have to stop him from pulling things over onto himself. He also learned not to shut his fingers in doors and drawers!

#9 honeylulu

Posted 01 February 2013 - 07:23 PM

I baby-proofed the kitchen/living room area completely. The drawers/cupboards DS can reach are filled with toddler-friendly cloths, tupperware, wooden spoons, pegs, etc and I let him make a mess. The short time it takes to clean up after him is worth the time it buys me to prepare meals, etc.
I put DS in his highchair for morning/afternoon tea and that buys a good 20 minutes each time, especially if I let him have waterplay or yoghurt "finger painting" in the chair afterwards.
Ironing I have to do when DS is asleep.

#10 zogee

Posted 01 February 2013 - 07:29 PM

I don't think there's a magic solution happy.gif as long as we all have something to eat at the end of the day and something clean to wear then I've done my job! It does get easier but during the holidays I'm finding my 4 yo is just as messy as the baby! rolleyes.gif

#11 ubermum

Posted 01 February 2013 - 07:38 PM

When you have more than one, you just have to. If you put a baby down to attend to the other child and the baby screams, they just have to until you can get to them. You can't always make your toddler second to the baby or you will end up with a great deal of jealousy and resentment. Second children learn that you may take a while, but you always come or call out to them. Sometimes they just fall asleep waiting. My baby no.3 spends a lot of time on the floor and scooting around.

#12 Ehill

Posted 01 February 2013 - 07:47 PM

QUOTE (misse10 @ 01/02/2013, 02:19 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
it seems all my girlfriends can have multiple kids while cooking nutritious meals and having clean, well maintained houses.


Can I also add, OP that this is not really reality.  We all have stages where we struggle to get things done.  Some people do have easy babies, my DD never got into anything and I, for the most part, had a tidy house, dinner on the table each night etc etc but she was an exception.  DS is a freakin nightmare and as I type this DH is tuning in the TV as DS decided today he was going to do 'laps' crawling around the TV cabinet and squish himself between the cabinet and wall pulling all the cables out.  

Most mums tidy their house before friends come over and as for nutritious meals......well they aren't going to invite you over for Maccas!  So dont get too stressed about what other mums are doing.  It does get easier and you get better at it and your standards definitely lower after 1!

#13 ~Supernova~

Posted 01 February 2013 - 07:54 PM

QUOTE (Ehill @ 01/02/2013, 08:47 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Can I also add, OP that this is not really reality.  We all have stages where we struggle to get things done.  Some people do have easy babies, my DD never got into anything and I, for the most part, had a tidy house, dinner on the table each night etc etc but she was an exception.  DS is a freakin nightmare and as I type this DH is tuning in the TV as DS decided today he was going to do 'laps' crawling around the TV cabinet and squish himself between the cabinet and wall pulling all the cables out.  

Most mums tidy their house before friends come over and as for nutritious meals......well they aren't going to invite you over for Maccas!  So dont get too stressed about what other mums are doing.  It does get easier and you get better at it and your standards definitely lower after 1!


I have to disagree here. I have one of the most difficult kids known to mankind, but most nights I manage a very complicated meal, and a decently clean house. It's a combination of a very helpful DH and my total love of cooking. Also...I'm happy for DS to destroy the joint lol. Everyone has different priorities. I'm pretty free range though, and will either stick him on the bumbo on the bench, passing him copious amounts of veges to munch on, chuck him in the ergo, or let him go wild in the cupboards. It's doable.

#14 LovenFire

Posted 01 February 2013 - 08:02 PM

I'm still figuring it out BUT, once the kids are awake, the feline is outside.  That's one drama dealt with.

Almost always run a wash last thing at night, so clothes can hit the line as soon as bub head down for his morning nap - often though, he is either in his bouncer or outside with me.  The older one comes out to 'help' me hang out clothes, find ants, lizards, leaves, birds, aero planes etc etc etc.  sometimes, I'll leave them both engrossed in activities and hang out the wash myself ESP if very hot.

We are lucky enough to be able to fence off the kitchen, and have done so, along with fencing off access to the laundry and bathroom.  The rest of the space is for the kids to go crazy in.  We opted for cupboards where you have to press the door in to release them - so far, it's kept the kids out.  But if not possible, totally agree with PP - designate one cupboard to the baby and let him enjoy it.

Lastly, when people come over, I move everything that is messy upstairs and ensure downstairs looks tidy lol!

Good luck OP

#15 LovenFire

Posted 01 February 2013 - 08:06 PM

Mind you, the never ending dusting saga does my freaking head in!  How is it possible for things and surfaces to get dusty so very quickly?!

#16 kpingitquiet

Posted 01 February 2013 - 08:33 PM

Baby gates. Lots and lots of baby gates. We started with a small area just for her to be free of the dogs, then it's grown and grown and grown as she has. Now we've recently just childproofed a bunch of areas so we could eliminate all but the gate around the TV.

#17 Jenflea

Posted 01 February 2013 - 08:44 PM

Sit him in the high chair while you cook. I got a pat Mat which was a water filled mat with plastic shapes in it she could pat and whack at while in the chair.
The bouncy chair was my very best friend for months, it's how I managed a shower each day. And kept her out of the bathroom cupboard.


#18 blackbird

Posted 01 February 2013 - 08:55 PM

QUOTE (axiomae @ 01/02/2013, 08:01 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My tricks with my 7 month old when I need to keep her safe while I do something are the jolly jumper and the jumperoo - I can pop her in both of those and she will play happily in them while I vacuum, hang out washing, cook etc


This!


#19 Charli73

Posted 01 February 2013 - 08:59 PM

QUOTE (axiomae @ 01/02/2013, 08:01 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
My tricks with my 7 month old when I need to keep her safe while I do something are the jolly jumper and the jumperoo - I can pop her in both of those and she will play happily in them while I vacuum, hang out washing, cook etc

This for me too...


Edited by Charli73, 01 February 2013 - 09:01 PM.


#20 Mootmoot

Posted 01 February 2013 - 09:14 PM

QUOTE (Ehill @ 01/02/2013, 05:31 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
So in short......lower your standards and give him stuff to destroy.

Yep.

I used the strap-in bouncy chair thing for a while but DS got too big for it about this age.  It was about the time I discovered that you really don't actually need to shower every day!

I have gated off the laundry/ bathroom, locked the kitchen cupboards with dangerous or breakable things, shut the doors to the bedrooms and let him go everywhere else.  Like PPs, I've made sure a couple of low cupboards have plastic containers only in them and he loves getting into them. I don't bother clearing up until he's in bed, then it's a 5 minute job to throw everything back in the toy box.

Cooking happens during naps or with him clinging to my skirts or after DP gets home.  Mind you we don't have a cool-touch oven so it's stovetop only for the forseeable future, thanks to DS's fascination with the oven.  Also love the slow cooker.

Cleaning?  Housekeeping?  Pah.  It happens sometimes.  I'd rather play with DS or go out than clean until it's too obvious to ignore or DP has invited family over in which case it's his problem too.  In all seriousness, when you're 80 you won't even remember if your house was clean but you'll wish you took more time with your family, especially when they're so little.

#21 Ehill

Posted 01 February 2013 - 09:28 PM

QUOTE (Mareek @ 01/02/2013, 05:54 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I have to disagree here. I have one of the most difficult kids known to mankind, but most nights I manage a very complicated meal, and a decently clean house. It's a combination of a very helpful DH and my total love of cooking. Also...I'm happy for DS to destroy the joint lol. Everyone has different priorities. I'm pretty free range though, and will either stick him on the bumbo on the bench, passing him copious amounts of veges to munch on, chuck him in the ergo, or let him go wild in the cupboards. It's doable.


I just wanted to point out that this endless comparison of ourselves as mums to other "perfect mums" is so unhealthy and unnessesary.  Noone knows what really happens in these seemingly perfect homes so don't try and live up to it.  Maybe you do keep up with it all, but most of my friends (and myself) take a slight drop in the housework standards and pretty simplistic cooking as the norm when their bubs are small.  But having said that, I do think you can leave little adventurous babies to their own devices with the right planning, toys, equipment etc.

BTW my house is always very tidy.....but I have a cleaner once a week  wink.gif .  So there's another hint!

#22 Kant Anchor Us

Posted 01 February 2013 - 10:09 PM

I had the exact same problem OP! I went back to work slightly after and DH became SAHD. He used to do things like put DD1 in the high chair under a tree outside while he worked on the garden, that sort of thing. Maybe yo could try that with some toys for him to play with so you can take a shower etc.

A friend said her DD also did the exact same, but at around 10 months she developed some new skills (cruising furniture) and so she stopped being so demanding as she was busy focussing on that. So I guess at least you can take some comfort that it will improve soon

#23 samshine

Posted 01 February 2013 - 10:18 PM

I think lowering your standards, as said, does help.

Our 10mo is really busy and gets to every room and every cupboard in the house.  I had forgotten this stage! I find there is some stuff that can be only done when she is asleep.  She hates the pram and the high chair and anything that restricts freedom of movement so I have to let her run riot and clean up later.  

My standards have dropped considerably since having her.  I have a 5yo, 4yo, 2 jobs and the 10mo old.  Rather than stress about things like that, I remind myself this stage doesn't last forever, and I'm doing well to get from one day to the next  wink.gif

#24 WaitForIt

Posted 01 February 2013 - 10:42 PM

QUOTE (Ehill @ 01/02/2013, 10:28 PM)
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I just wanted to point out that this endless comparison of ourselves as mums to other "perfect mums" is so unhealthy and unnessesary.  Noone knows what really happens in these seemingly perfect homes so don't try and live up to it.  Maybe you do keep up with it all, but most of my friends (and myself) take a slight drop in the housework standards and pretty simplistic cooking as the norm when their bubs are small.  But having said that, I do think you can leave little adventurous babies to their own devices with the right planning, toys, equipment etc.

BTW my house is always very tidy.....but I have a cleaner once a week  wink.gif .  So there's another hint!


Yes.
I keep getting into patches of self doubt on my capabilities to get everything done when I compare myself, but pretty much every time a little piece of detail eventually comes out from my mum friends and I realise I'm no different to the majority. It's just recently I've realised some of them put on a bit of an act.
Plus, difficult children are not that easy.

#25 Princess.cranky.pants

Posted 01 February 2013 - 11:11 PM

QUOTE
So in short......lower your standards and give him stuff to destroy.


That's about it here too! My kids have always had free rein and I get on with what I have to do. I think it's good to give them freedom to explore... it's the very early stages of learning Independence. Also see 'Circle of Security'... 'support my exploration'. I think that helped my kids learn to play well interdependently. Handy skill when they are toddlers!

I have a 3 kids and our house is only tidy when friends come over. lol Kids live in this house and I accept that it is going to be messy. And I don't always have time to cook a nutritious meal. I think I am a normal mum.. bet your friends are not doing it as perfectly at you think they are.




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