18 March 2008

6 Items That Contribute To A Smooth Routine

The needs and the demands of the little ones are varied from day to day but there are some things in our household that are needed as part of the every day routine. As I am sure I’ve mentioned it before (and will again), I am all for the path of least resistance and although I can’t always go down that path, certain items in our possession at certain times of the day eases the bumpy ride.

The Pacifier / Dummy

I have dedicated a whole post to this here. Enough said on that one I think.


I have a draw in our lounge that has batteries of every kind in there as well as transformers that plug in and recharge other batteries for electric bikes etc. Why do I have these things? Well because you can explain to a 23 month old that their favourite toy has suddenly stopped working and you don’t have any of the correct size batteries for it to come to life. You can explain it but it doesn’t even register. All you get back is a look to say make this work in the next 10 seconds or your day will take a steep decline in happiness. There is no grey area.

Aqua Draw

Lilly and Amy have just got into drawing, they want to draw all the time and because we have to supervise them all the time because crayons rarely stay in the realms of the colouring book, we decided to get them a couple of these wondrous things. If you haven't heard of them before, the things they draw on are covered in a special coating that is activated by water. The pens that they use are just filled with water. They draw on the special paper and pictures come out, they draw on the wall or TV and there’s just a damp spot. So they can play with them on the carpet or table, wherever they like and when they poke daddy in the eye with them when he is asleep he just gets a wet eye. Result!


Dinner time goes a lot smoother with this little item. Emma usually makes a batch of butterfly cakes at the start of the week and they have half of one for dinner. They love them and will always eat the whole thing.
This is a double edged sword though because if they get a peep of a cake or even a slight smell then we may as well kiss goodbye to them eating there main meal. At the moment, there is no comprehension of “eat your dinner and then you can have cake”, there is just “ta, ta, cake, cake” which translated means “thank you for putting in the effort of making me this lovely dinner but I think I will pass this course and go straight for dessert”. Emma and I have learned from this and the cake is well hidden until the right time. Go parenting.

BTW, the picture of the cake is what's left of the first dry run of the girl's birthday cake (it's a good 8.5 out of 10)


As we call it in our house. Maybe in yours, it’s called blankey or blanket. We have 2 identical small blankets that my mum got the girls when they were born and they have been within a few feet of them ever since. This is one item that, as long as they have one of them, they don’t care which one they have, although Amy just wants to swap every now and then. I can’t even think about the consequences if on of those ever gets lost (shudder). I can remember going down every isle of Toys R Us once looking for one of them that Amy had dropped. This is one item that will be with them for a long time.

Pooh Night Light Music Thing.

This thing saved Emma and I from going down a deep pit of misery at the beginning of every bed time. Before we had this device, we would put Amy and Lilly to bed. They would cry and scream until one of us sat in there with them. It was then a trick to crawl out without them noticing. If we made a creak trying to escape then it was another half hour until the next attempt. For me it was nearly impossible to get out without making a sound because as Emma puts it, I am a klutz.

A work colleague suggested that I get a music nightlight to distract them so we did. This thing is so cool; it has music and projects an image onto the ceiling that constantly moves around on a reel. It’s also voice activated so if they start to cry it comes on automatically and plays for 10 minutes and goes off again. The only thing is that Lilly and Amy now know it will come on when they shout so they keep putting it on when it goes off. I think the record is 4 or 5 times. No drama though so another result.

I think that we learned quickly that a solid routine is the key to a happy home life. Our life is a lot happier with these items in our routine. Do you have any items that help keep the peace during the day?

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