Written By: Breanna Cordeiro
Parenting in itself is challenging. Peaceful and parenting together almost seems like oil and water, it doesn’t mix. I remember having a conversation with one of my friends who didn’t have any children yet; she asked what it was like being a mom. And the first thing that came to my mind was telling her imagine standing up in a plane with a lot of turbulence with a child on your hip and trying to get a hundred and one things done. That’s what parenting felt like to me at that stage of my son’s life. From the moment he got up, to the second his big eyes closed at night my whole presence felt like that. I knew after that conversation I needed to make some serious changes because most times parenting should be enjoyable right? Here are some quick and easy peaceful parenting hacks, that with some significant trial and error on my toddler, work with us.
Get your children involved with the grocery shopping by getting them to make a list with you prior. Getting the opportunity to grocery shop alone is most moms dream. I will never forget how excited I use to get just to have the opportunity to go to Wal-Mart without my son just to grab diapers. Unfortunately nowadays I rarely get that opportunity and I have to bring my threenager with me. Hearing “What are you cooking for me? And “What are we getting?” 100 times while down aisle 5 would make any parent want to rip their hair out. To make the shopping excursions more peaceful I get my son involved and plan ahead. We will go through flyers before and I will cut a couple items out that we need and he will glue it on a sheet of construction paper. My son gets so excited going down the aisles trying to find what’s on his list and feels so proud when he finds them. The 10 minutes we spend planning at home prevents many meltdowns and onlookers looking (who am I kidding? We get looks regardless).
Almost every parent I talk to struggles with keeping their children entertained and engaged with things that don’t involve being in front of a screen. As much as I love playing with my son, my mind sometimes needs a break from pretending to be Chase on the case and reading Goodnight Moon for the 100th time that day. Laundry needs to be put away and no matter how much prep I have done the night before, dinner still needs to be cooked. I keep a small tote in my closet with a bunch of hand busy activities. Sticker books, puzzles, matching games, dominoes, activity books are some things I keep on hand that are easily ready at your local dollar store. One thing I love about this peaceful parenting hack is these activities kept in the tote can be enjoyed anywhere in the house so your child can be with you enjoying them and you can engage in whatever household chore you're am doing.
Dedicate an hour every Sunday night to prepare for the week. Organize your children’s outfits together for the week on Sunday night. This was the biggest game changer in our household. I have a special section in my laundry station where every morning when I wake up, I bring one of the outfits to the bathroom and put it on my sons bathroom stool. He knows that after he does he teeth he tries with the help of me to put on his clothes. Another easy tip is to prepare fresh fruit and vegetables and make them easily accessible in your fridge for your children to grab a quick snack that won’t put them in a sugar coma.
Whether you are a single parent, parent of multiples, trying to balancing a job, or a stay at home parent. I hope that some of these hacks make parenting more peaceful and less panicky.