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Grandma babysits! From time to time I get to babysit my adorable grand babies. Yesterday afternoon was one of those days. It began slow….both kids, almost 3 year old girl and 8 month old boy were napping! Shortly after mom and dad left 8 month old (Will call him ‘L’) woke up crying…I mean less than 45 minutes later. I was baking the cupcakes as instructed and started cooking chicken for dinner. It was about 3 pm. Upon turning L’s light on in his room he stopped crying. He was on his tummy in a semi-crawl position and looked up at me with big smile! Well that didn’t last…. once he realized I wasn’t mommy or daddy the biggest pout came about and followed by very loud crying with a head plant to the mattress. (Am I really that scary?) I picked him up, changed him with the door closed as big sister (I will call ‘A’) was still sleeping and I wanted some baby cuddles first. ‘L’ cried through the whole process and for pretty much the next 45 minutes! Bouncy seat, saucer, floor sit, couch sit and of course grandma sit didn’t seem to help either. Just when I thought he was done and accepting….. he pouted and began again.
I removed cupcakes from oven, browned chicken and turned it as low as possible. I could not prepare or continue with baby in my arms. Just than I got a call from my teenager. (Oh boy, now what?) The ring tone is Woody Wood Pecker theme song! Wow, ‘L’ stopped crying! I should have guessed, all 3 of my boys loved music as I always have it on. On goes Spotify, on my cell phone. I picked my “Cardio mix” upbeat music and a lot of 80’s songs. Little L completely stopped crying and started looking around, by this time I had put him in saucer in kitchen so I could get dinner back on track. Oh and the cupcakes! Well they were cooled longer than they should have been in pan…. Yup, very stuck!
I love slightly loud music but I was mindful of little ears but when he started bouncing and giggling like crazy in his saucer to ‘Welcome to the Jungle’ (Guns’ n’ Roses) I turned up the music. When I turned it back down I heard little girl singing! Miss ‘A’ was up! (Not my fault, pretty sure she just slept enough!) ‘A’ was a little surprised by me opening her door but took to it well. Of course I reminded her who I was: “A do you want to come play with L and Grandma?” Okay I mentioned cupcakes! Either way she followed me, and had no issues with me being here, after we settled that mommy and daddy were out on a date and would be back soon.
Once we decorated 2 cupcakes with too much icing and “spinguls” (She’s so cute!) I made real dinner and A made me dinner with her play food. I might be bias but her dinner was great! (A “Micdonals hamgurber and O-gurt ink”) The rest of the afternoon went well, grandpa even showed up! (His 1st time to new house) Little Miss A gave him a tour: “L’s room, A’s room (She used herself in 3rd person) and “Our room”. (LOL.. mommy and daddy’s room!) I was told later that mommy and daddy have said a few times to ‘A’ : “Do you want to watch tv in our room or in the living room?” Inadvertently they named their room “Our room!”
‘A’ asked for the TV on while she ate her cupcake. She was glued to ‘Shimmer and Shine’ show. Seemed strange to me, but I had boys so we watched really different shows like ‘Mighty Machines, Dora/Diego, Arthur, Berenstain Bears, Bob the Builder, and of Rescue Rangers. Either way it got me thinking about arts, crafts and learning activities for her age… almost 3!
I used to do home daycare when my kids were little, when we lived in Toronto and out here in the country. I’ve always been partial to toddlers right up until age of 8 or 9 years old. (Sorry teenagers!) I love baby cuddles but toddlers are so full of life and wonder. In the short time that I babysat them yesterday, we had lots to do and didn’t need any more, but it got me thinking about activities that I could do with them. Here are some I came up with while watching
List of 6 Activities or Crafts:
- Sticker bingo: make up 3-4 paper bingo cards with 9 different stickers (3 boxes/row) animal/trucks/princess/paw patrol characters. (Can laminate these later. Use 10-12 favorite toys (or make up key cards that match in a box or bag and pull one out at a time.) Use favorite markers: pennies, smarties, or bingo chips.
- Paint your toys with water: just that; paint trucks, cars, houses, blocks, play kitchen, ride on toy, etc. (on kitchen floor/in bathtub or in backyard)
- Sew a shape: cut a shape or picture out of cereal box or other cardboard, punch holes in it around edges and sew with a shoelace.
- Make a picture frame: use already painted Popsicle sticks and glue together in a square and cut out picture from magazine or use a photo. Decorate with glitter, sparkles or stickers.
- Colour, paint, glue paper pieces all over a paper/cardboard (food box) and have parent cut out either first initial/name/shape/animal (if your an artist) and voila you have a piece of art.
- Sock toss/tinfoil ball: roll up socks or a tinfoil ball put buckets/bowls/baskets about 3 feet away (depending on age) and toss sock ball or tinfoil into bucket or get creative and add 3 buckets for points or as a fun moment between tasks (3 shots than finish eating, cleaning up, changing tasks from tv to quiet time…etc.)