Friday, May 08, 2009

How to keep your children entertained: let them help you!

Cara loves being in the kitchen with Mommy. And it's because I've always welcomed her in! Sometimes, yes, it's hard to get stuff done with a little one in tow, or underfoot, but the lessons I'm teaching her I know will not soon be forgotten. Here are a few things she helps with (over the course of this past week).
Her new favorite thing to do is help mommy 'wash the cups.' I pull her kitchen stool up to the sink. I'm trying very hard to teach her not to waste water, so after I've cleaned the sink good, I let her play while it's filling up (usually while I'm unloading the dishwasher....yes look at all those dirty dishes piled up!!). Otherwise, she just wants the water to run non stop! Look at those gorgeous (unkept this particular morning) curls!! :) She loves dumping water from one cup to another, and I love telling her how one is bigger than the other and the water from it won't fit into the smaller cup. She's not quite grasping 'volume' as a concept yet, but hey, the seed is planted :) Her other favorite thing is for me to put a drop of soap in the cup, then let it fill up with bubbles. "Put bubbles in the cup mommy!!!" I love my girl!

Her other 'chore' she enjoys helping out with is drying and sorting the silverware. Obviously, I do the knives (although, she's been known to pick them up and put them in another cubby!!), but she likes drying...(stop taking my picture already mom!)

and sorting. I ask her to count them as she's putting them in. She knows how to match the forks, the little spoons, the big spoons, etc. That's my little genius (ok, maybe I'm getting a little ahead of myself...ha!).

Another way Cara is great is when Micah is fussing. I ask her to go put the pacifier in, and she ends up 'reading' to him or playing with him, or just overall keeping him entertained. This was such a sweet morning a few days ago. I had washed diapers, but none were stuffed, so I asked her to go play with him so I could stuff one to put him in. She ended up talking to him, playing with him. She is such a good big sis. And of course I had to take a picture of it!

I will soon do a baking day post...but I did want to share some pictures from our baking morning yesterday. First off, I usually put her stool up against the counter, thinking she can stand and help me. Then I go get some ingredients and turn around to this:
Please sit on your bottom honey!! Thanks, that's much better. There is learning in everything we try to do. She counts as she puts the muffin paper cups in the muffin tin. She's great at counting to 12 because we bake muffins a lot :).

And probably their favorite part...taste testing!! (she actually loves these waffles, that was just a silly face) :)

I hope that inspired some of you to find joy in the little things. Or little ones. Yes, sometimes we could do things much faster or better without their help, but soon we will be in the time of our years when we wish they were here underfoot 'helping.' I am trying to cherish these day!! :)

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