Do not accept motherhood as an excuse for chaos. It is better to lower our expectations for "tidiness" to reduce stress while maintaining an overall sense of orderliness. It's what I like to call "Organized Chaos."
Organization is one dimension of family health. Without enough of it, families suffer the consequences of a chaotic environment.
While a wide range of styles or methods for organization abound, finding what organizing method works and makes sense for you and your family is important.
I've been there with a toddler and I know many of you are there right now! Here are some solutions that will help you combat the terrible toddler tornado that destroys your clean house!
While you are cleaning and tidying your home, invite your toddler to be a team player. That's right; invite your toddler to help you. They are most eager to be a part of anything and everything the family is doing at this age and they love to see Mom and Daddy happy with them.
Many toddlers are eager to help with chores, and while their "helping" may not always be appreciated, keeping their excitement and the habit of helping out alive, should be. Sticker charts are a great way to keep toddlers excited about helping. Their chores may have to be completed with you helping every step of the way, but you are laying the groundwork for children that find chores and helping a way of life. Helping you is a great distraction to them and keeps them from creating new messes while you are busy cleaning up.
Below is a list of a few things toddlers can "help" with that will keep them occupied while you clean and pick-up house.
Some chores 2-3 year olds can do…
- Help make the bed.
- Pick up toys and books.
- Take laundry to the laundry room.
- Help feed pets.
- Help wipe up messes.
- Dust with socks on their hands.
- Mop in areas with help.
- Clear small items from the kitchen table.
By implementing these simple solutions, you will find that your toddler will thrive and look forward to cleaning up with Mommy instead of making Mommy clean up after them!
Remember that children mature at their own pace and not all kids will be capable of advanced chores at the same age, just as some children may be ready for more difficult chores at a younger age. The most important guidelines are supervision and evaluation of your child's needs and abilities.